Fennel Plants And How To Grow Them

Fennel plants are annual or perennial and can reach 1.5m or more, with one to several erect, hollow stems coming from the base and bearing fine, glossy aromatic pinnate foliage. The tiny yellow flowers, borne in umbels, are used in pickling and the small seeds are very aromatic.

Apple And Fennel Sauce Made From Fennel Plants
Apple And Fennel Sauce

Fennel plants prefers a light, well drained slightly alkaline soil in a sunny position but is adaptable and tolerates the cold very well. Raise all varieties by seed sown in spring. Propagate perennial forms by division in spring. Cut down and remove old stems. Harvest foliage and flowers as required. Harvest seeds when ripe then dry and freeze for a few days to kill any insects. Lift roots in autumn and dry them.

Slice the raw bulb thinly and add to salads, or cut in half and roast as a vegetable to bring out its sweetness. See here for a pan fried fennel recipe and here, for a cake recipe. Use fresh fennel leaves in salads, salad dressings and vinegars, with fish, pork and seafood dishes, or as a garnish. The dried seeds are used in cakes and breads, Italian sausages, salads, pickles, curries and pasta and tomato dishes.

information sourced from The Complete Book of Herbs
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28 thoughts on “Fennel Plants And How To Grow Them

  1. I am fennel mad, i cannot go past them and the scent of fennel is divine. We grow it every year. I did not know there was a perennial one, I just thought they re-seeded so i am going to look into that. Though it does get very cold out here. Thanks for the reminder to order these seeds! c

  2. We did grow it one year quite successfully but as we have year round wild fennel in our olives, we don´t grow it anymore. Mind you, I do love a big fat bulb of fennel simply slices and sprinkled with salt, pepper and olive oil 🙂 Have just seen how many followers you have – wow, well done!

  3. I adore fennel, grew up on it and try to incorporate it into many of my dishes. I had no idea how the plant grew or looked tho!!

  4. I have not used fennel often however i have been meaning to try it for sometime now, and it is now on my list for shopping tomorrow.

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