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Occasionally it happens that freshly sown parsley does not grow optimally or even dies. This can have different causes. In some cases, the plant can be saved with appropriate measures.

Overview of possible causes

The dying of parsley plants never happens without a reason. It may not be obvious at first glance and you need to take a closer look. It is also quite possible that several of the causes listed below are present at the same time.

  • unfavorable location
  • Non-compliance with crop rotation
  • tired soil
  • soil prone to waterlogging
  • fungal diseases
  • errors in care

Unfavorable location

Several factors can determine an unfavorable location:

  • little light
  • direct sunlight

When parsley grows in a pot, the easiest way to fix the location problem is because of its mobility. In direct sunlight, for example on the south window, she urgently needs to move or at least be moved further away. If, on the other hand, it is too dark, it must be brighter from now on. Subsequent shading in the bed can be helpful. For example, through higher planting in the immediate vicinity or through an awning, etc. Otherwise, vital plants can be transplanted to a suitable place. You can also sow the plant in a more favorable location and destroy the old plants.

Non-compliance with crop rotation

In order for parsley to germinate in the garden bed and for healthy growth to occur, crop rotation must also be taken into account. For example, the parsley herb may only be sown in the same place at intervals of three, even better four years. This time interval must also be observed if other umbellifers such as carrots, parsnips or fennel have previously been grown on it.


Tired soil

If the soil has been depleted by previous planting and has not been replenished with new nutrients before sowing the parsley, the plant will not be able to grow due to nutrient deficiencies.

  • fertilize if necessary
  • however, an organic fertilizer must not be fresh

Notice: Yellow leaves could also be an indication that the soil is too acidic. Measure the pH and add lime if necessary.

Soil prone to waterlogging

A soil that tends to waterlogging is a disadvantage for this herb. If you didn't loosen it up before sowing and mixed it with sand if necessary, you can only do this to a limited extent without damaging the roots. For example, you can draw fine grooves so that rainwater can drain off better. It may be necessary to sacrifice a few specimens for space reasons.

diseases and pests

Diseases and pests can also cause problems for the young parsley plants. Look for stains or slips on the leaves. If you look closely, lice can also be seen with the naked eye.

  • Cut off all leaves close to the ground
  • wait for healthy new growth

Alternatively, you can sow parsley elsewhere or in a new pot, as it is not 100% certain that cutting back will solve the problem.

errors in care

After the parsley has sprouted, its growth is slow. This can tempt some owners to fertilize heavily. But the consequences are different than expected. Yellow leaves appear first, a little later the entire plant can die from over-fertilization. Stop further fertilizing immediately, maybe the plant can still recover. If the plants are strong enough, they can be transplanted into fresh soil.

The second mistake is made when watering, by watering too often or too much. If your plants are too wet, take a long break from watering and then only water as needed:

  • Never let roots dry out completely
  • water only when the top layer of soil is dry

Tip: If the parsley is sown in the pot, the excess irrigation water must be able to drain off easily. If necessary, repot the plant into a pot with plenty of large drainage holes.

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