No success with parsnips

Hi, just wondering what peoples strategies for getting successful parsnip germination were? I’m having no luck so far (or last year). Have tried direct planting, and pre germinating on a windowsill but nothing. seeds are this years but were free seeds from magazines. Any thoughts?

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They are notoriously slow to germinate. Last year, on my allotment they took about 6 weeks! Maybe you just need to hold your breath a bit longer?

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I’d second @Brianl’s suggestion, I also find they get lost among the weeds and are very slow growing initially, making them all to easy to weed out. Which I suspect is actually at the bottom of the hard to grow element.

What is the cultivar you are growing? I have generally had the best success with ‘Gladiator’.

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Hi Melanie,
Parsnip seeds also need a bit of warmth so maybe the soil hasn’t been the right temperature. Try and sow individually in a drill and at either side plant a row of spring onions. Quite close. These will germinate first and will leave you knowing where your parsnip row is. Don’t weed the parsnip row until you know they are through. In a warm soil about 4 weeks so I would try again now we are into late May. You should still have time to have whole parsnips for winter.

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Well I gave up and ‘weeded’ the row to find probably only I parsnip had germinated. Going to try again now it’s warmer. Can’t exactly remember the exact type but it had Gem’ in the name. Fingers cross3d this time.

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Good luck Melanie! Keep us updated on the parsnip adventure, still time!

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hot off the press - first parsnips have been seen, in two different beds so there will be roast parsnips this winter and I think ignore the packets timing and plant much later!

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Hooray! Same pack or the new sowing?

New pack, two different areas and both have come up - so I’m guessing the others were just too early.

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Yes it sounds like that is the answer