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A picture of a Cow Parsley

Cow Parsley

Anthriscus sylvestris

Also known as

Queen Anne's Lace, Cow Weed, Deil's Meal, Keck, Mock Chervil, Orchard Weed, Wild Caraway, Wild Chervil, Wild Parsley, Bur Chervil, Woodland Chervil

Photo by orange_tamarisk1 (All rights reserved)

Full Sun
Moderate care
Moderate watering
Frost Hardy


RHS hardiness


Minimum temperature

Expected size








2 years to reach maturity


  • spring
  • summer
  • autumn
  • winter

This plant has a mild fragrance

More images of Cow Parsley

A photo of Cow Parsley
A photo of Cow Parsley
A photo of Cow Parsley
A photo of Cow Parsley

Cow Parsley Overview

Cow parsley is a pretty, wild flower native to the United Kingdom, commonly found in hedgerows, field margins and verges. The white flower umbels on tall stems sway gently in the breeze in spring across the British countryside. It has become a very popular plant at the Chelsea Flower Show, and is often used in natural garden schemes.

Common problems with Cow Parsley

May be attacked by slugs, snails and caterpillars when young. Sometimes affected by powdery mildew.

How to harvest Cow Parsley

Seed can be collected in late Summer when ripe. Flowers can be picked throughout the flowering season for display.

How to propagate Cow Parsley


Sow seeds in a cold frame or under glass in spring or autumn, or sow directly into the ground in Summer.


Spreads naturally via underground roots or rhizomes.


Seed, division.

Special features of Cow Parsley

Attracts useful insects

Flowers are good source of nectar for bees, hoverflies and other insects.

Other uses of Cow Parsley

A useful plant for dry partially shaded areas it suits informal cottage gardens or wildlife friendly gardens/pastures.


Cow parsley is said to be bitter, but edible. However, it is not recommended for consumption, as the plant looks very similar to several highly poisonous varieties.

Flowers to Sow Outside in October

Direct sow these during October where you want them to flower next year!

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Looking Good In May - Top 10

Traditionally flowering in May, these flowers will be at their best this month.

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