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Growing Florence Fennel, also Finocchio

Jan F M A M J J A S O N Dec
    S T P              

(Best months for growing Florence Fennel in USA - Zone 5a regions)

S = Plant undercover in seed trays T = Plant out (transplant) seedlings P = Sow seed

  • Easy to grow. Sow in garden. Sow seed at a depth approximately three times the diameter of the seed. Best planted at soil temperatures between 50°F and 77°F. (Show °C/cm)
  • Space plants: Thin to 6 inches
  • Harvest in 14-20 weeks.
  • Compatible with (can grow beside): Lettuce, Chicory, Cucumber, peas, sage
  • Avoid growing close to: Beans, tomatoes
  • A fennel seedling
    A fennel seedling
  • Ready to use
    Ready to use

This is a perennial grown as an annual as the stems become more fibrous with age. Both seeds and leaves have a mild aniseed flavour. With its feathery leaves it makes a good background plant in a border. Grows to approx 1.5m (5ft) Can be repeat sown throughout the year or left to self seed.

Fennel prefers well-drained fertile soil.

Culinary hints - cooking and eating Florence Fennel

The swollen base of the stem is used.

Slice and steam/stir-fry the bulb, or use raw/grated in salads. Can be cooked and served with sauces or butter.

Your comments and tips

12 Dec 17, Ilka Howell (Australia - cool/mountain climate)
What happens if you plant fennel with beans? I didn't know they shouldn't be grown together and have planted them in a large garden bed together. They are not right next to each other, have lettuce and radishes separating so approx 1m apart. Will they grow ok?
13 Dec 17, Mike (Australia - sub-tropical climate)
From Houzz Fennel is allelopathic to most garden plants, inhibiting growth, causing to bolt, or actually killing many plants. Like black walnut or elder, it produces some chemical or other which does bad things to its neighbours. Although it causes coriander to bolt, the coriander does help to prevent fennel from becoming too much of a weed. It depends which one you want to sacrifice, I guess! It will cross-pollinate with dill, resulting in a horrible-tasting plant. I think fennel will be OK if grown in a pot, but you'll need to be vigilant to stop it from going to seed (a pity if you want those seeds!) - those seeds can travel far and wide, making it a very invasive plant indeed.
30 Nov 17, Anita Groenewald (South Africa - Semi-arid climate)
Where can I find fennel farmers in South Africa? i want to buy fresh fennel and rhubarb in fairly large quantities.
05 Nov 17, joel (Australia - temperate climate)
where in Australia can u grow fennel
25 Oct 17, Poloko Mphatane (South Africa - Semi-arid climate)
Good-day I am very much interested in growing plant's at the back of the yard I want to know how to grow fennel in free state and how to maintain them and protect them Thanks
25 Jun 17, Jay (USA - Zone 5a climate)
Can I plant fennels at 8500 feet high Colorado
02 Jun 17, Carol Grey (Australia - cool/mountain climate)
I have just dug out an enormous fennel in North Tasmania , Have little ones growing.
11 Apr 17, Wayne Grant (Australia - temperate climate)
I planted a fennel seed from a dried herb packet i bought from an organic store. What variety if fennel do they typically sell as a herb?
13 Apr 17, Ken (Australia - sub-tropical climate)
It could be any variety of fennel and chances are it is imported. I suggest you keep growing it and if you like the end result save some seed for next seasons planting.
08 Apr 16, jaye (USA - Zone 10b climate)
I live in Kingston Jamaica in the area where temperature at this time is 85 degrees. Can fennel seeds grow in this area under a shade cloth
Showing 1 - 10 of 48 comments

I planted a fennel seed from a dried herb packet i bought from an organic store. What variety if fennel do they typically sell as a herb?

- Wayne Grant

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This planting guide is a general reference intended for home gardeners. We recommend that you take into account your local conditions in making planting decisions. Gardenate is not a farming or commercial advisory service. For specific advice, please contact your local plant suppliers, gardening groups, or agricultural department. The information on this site is presented in good faith, but we take no responsibility as to the accuracy of the information provided.
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