My good crop of parsnips are spoiled buy a brown, rough surface round the crown. What can I do to avoid this next year? I do hope you can help.
From your description, it is possible that the soil is too heavy and may well have become waterlogged over the winter months. This often leads to brown colouring around the crown of parsnips. While they are a reasonably straightforward vegetable to grow, try raising the beds 100-120mm above exsiting ground level before planting your next season parsnips. The other possible explanation is exposure to light. If the mature parsnips have emerged slightly above soil level before harvesting, it is quite common for brown markings to appear on the crown. In this instance, either harvest immediately or cover the crowns with some free draining soil.