Dreading Winter? Grow Parsley (and Other Crops) Indoors

My 4-year-old daughter’s birthday gift inspired me to beat the winter blues by starting a garden in our home’s windowsill.

by Dawn Combs

Dreading Winter? Grow Parsley (and Other Crops) Indoors - Photo by Crishna Simmons/Flickr (HobbyFarms.com)

The cheery holidays have come and gone, and our crisp white snow is turning to muddy slush in the bleak days of January that remain. If you’re like me, the last few forlorn Christmas cookies are in the cupboard, and you’re trying to encourage yourself to get off the sofa and do that new yoga workout you promised to do. Blah!

It’s so easy to get pulled down this time of year. The holiday letdown leaves us with little anticipation. This past weekend my daughter had her birthday party, and it’s the last holiday we’ll celebrate for some time.

She’s 4 and runs around the house excited about anything and nothing all at the same time. I so appreciate our friends who come to my children’s parties. They’re kind and generous with their thoughtful gifts, but this year, we kept the party small and had a really wonderful time. My daughter wound up with some very fun and educational toys that were perfect and didn’t add to my now free-from-holiday-clutter home. One friend brought something in particular that has become a gift to me as much as my daughter and is sure to brighten up these last days of winter as we wait for the ground to thaw.

Winter Gardening

Dreading Winter? Grow Parsley (and Other Crops) Indoors - Photo by Dawn Combs (HobbyFarms.com)

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This week I will be salving my green thumb with a child’s window garden set. What a great item to sell for a child’s gift! This set of three pots comes complete with its own soil, seeds and trowel. It even has it’s own coasters so you don’t soak your furniture when you water. I think this will be a new tradition in our house.

There are many flowers and herbs that can be grown in a windowsill in the winter to brighten up your house and your mood. This particular set contains basil, zinnia and sunflower seeds. I can already imagine the cheeriness emanating from the flowers as I pass by. I can taste the bright, fresh basil in our evening meal.

I was so inspired by this gift that I sent my husband rummaging through our seed bin. Do you have one? I can’t be the only one who keeps five seeds in the bottom of a packet that weren’t planted, can I? Anyway, we have some great seeds. I am particularly keen to grow some parsley.

Indoor Parsley

Parsley (Petroselinum crispum) is particularly nice to grow indoors. It comes up easily from seed that has been soaked for 24 hours before planting. Once it gets going, you can cut a bit here and there on an almost constant basis. Keep it in a sunny, warm location and water it properly for a lush crop all winter long.

If you have a house water softener, be careful that you aren’t using the water from your faucet to irrigate. In very short order, your plants will die off from the salt overload. Instead, collect snow to melt, set a bucket outside for rainwater or simply get water out of an outside faucet that bypasses your softener.

Parsley is rich in vitamins A, B and C. It’s a digestive aid and natural detoxifier. It’s vitamin profile tells us that it is a support for our immune system—just what we need at this time of year! Only those who are pregnant or nursing need avoid large amounts of parsley on a daily basis. I love to add this fresh plant to my smoothies. Try it, and see if you don’t feel it’s green brightness come over you immediately, lifting you passed the dreaded January doldrums.

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