Herbs forum: Foeniculum vulgare - Fennel

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Name: Deb
Pacific Northwest (Zone 8b)
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Bonehead
Nov 6, 2015 3:15 PM CST
I find this to be a very stately plant, particularly the bronze form with its billowy copper fronds. It self-seeds but I like to pull the young seedlings for that fresh anise scent (be sure to pull seedlings before they get too big, as it has a long tap root). Fennel seed, leaves, and root are used both for culinary and medicinal purposes. Strangely, one of my herb books notes that chewing fennel seed will banish hunger, while another notes that a leaf infusion will accelerate the digestion of fatty food, thus a help in weight loss. Apparently good for the gut one way or the other. I have not used this herb personally, so can't speak to any of the claims. It is a beautiful plant, though, and well worth growing. Be cautious about growing it too close to dill, as they may cross-pollinate. This is also a very good host plant for various insects.

I want to live in a world where the chicken can cross the road without its motives being questioned.
Name: Linda
Medina Co., TX (Zone 8a)
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LindaTX8
Nov 6, 2015 4:12 PM CST
It's a host for Black Swallowtail caterpillars.
Thumb of 2015-11-06/LindaTX8/0d4874

I would feel more optimistic about a bright future for man if he spent less time proving that he can outwit Nature and more time tasting her sweetness and respecting her seniority. E. B.White
Integrity can never be taken. It can only be given, and I wasn't going to give it up to these people. Gary Mowad
Name: Margaret
Delta KY
I'm A Charley's Girl For Sure
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Mindy03
Nov 6, 2015 6:12 PM CST
I grew the bronze fennel from seed a few years ago keep means ng to replant it but always forget.
It is used in gripe water for infants.
Name: Donald
Eastland county, Texas (Zone 8a)
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needrain
Nov 7, 2015 5:45 PM CST
It is a perennial plant, isn't it? Anyone know it's minimum temperature? Or is it best to treat as an annual?
Donald
Name: Deb
Pacific Northwest (Zone 8b)
Region: Pacific Northwest Organic Gardener Herbs Dragonflies Dog Lover Keeper of Poultry
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Bonehead
Nov 7, 2015 6:13 PM CST
Our database indicates it is a perennial. Rodale's Herb Book states "it is a biennial with a tendency to become a perennial where soil and climate are favorable." I have only planted mine once and always have plants in the same general spot as the prior year, PLUS seedlings here and there where the wind has sown the seed. I am not sure if my returning plants are new seedlings, 2nd year biennials, or if my circumstances allow for it to be perennial. I can't put my finger on the zone requirements, but I am in Zone 8 and my sister is in Zone 5 and it is hardy for both of us, so you should be OK. It's certainly worth a try, I love the anise aroma and feathery fronds.
I want to live in a world where the chicken can cross the road without its motives being questioned.
Name: Margaret
Delta KY
I'm A Charley's Girl For Sure
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Mindy03
Nov 7, 2015 6:22 PM CST
Mine didn't survive my husband and his weedeater.
I'm in zone 6
Name: Deb
Pacific Northwest (Zone 8b)
Region: Pacific Northwest Organic Gardener Herbs Dragonflies Dog Lover Keeper of Poultry
Birds Lover of wildlife (Raccoon badge) Garden Ideas: Master Level Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Garden Sages Plant Identifier
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Bonehead
Nov 7, 2015 7:26 PM CST
Ah, Mindy, how well I know that struggle... Whenever I introduce a new shrub to our driveway border, I diligently mark it with a stake, but then simply pat it on the head and say 'good luck' for that very reason!
I want to live in a world where the chicken can cross the road without its motives being questioned.
Name: Cinda
Indiana Zone 5b
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gardengus
Nov 8, 2015 6:12 PM CST
I have bronze fennel here in zone 5 and it is a perennial here . I have a tendency to loose the large clumps at about year 6 . I think the clump just gets too large and maybe the snow ice gets to the root tops and rots them. There are always new volunteers to replace them .

I know I made a comment in the database about this : but beware if you grow fennel it will cross with dill and make your dill seed not produce ''good'' dill .
Keep believing ,hoping,and loving
all else is just existing.
Name: nell mcguire
north little rock Ar (Zone 7b)
nell
Nov 15, 2015 7:17 PM CST
Margaret, What is gripe water? just curious. never heard of it. nell
Name: Margaret
Delta KY
I'm A Charley's Girl For Sure
Forum moderator Charter ATP Member Hosted a Not-A-Raffle-Raffle I helped beta test the Garden Planting Calendar I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Beekeeper
Seed Starter Permaculture Region: Kentucky Garden Ideas: Master Level
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Mindy03
Nov 15, 2015 8:14 PM CST
It is what they call the drops or water doctors prescribe for the colic in babies.
Another herb used in it with fennel is ginger.

(Not being a
Name: Linda
Medina Co., TX (Zone 8a)
Charter ATP Member Salvias Herbs Bluebonnets Native Plants and Wildflowers Lover of wildlife (Raccoon badge)
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LindaTX8
Nov 16, 2015 1:37 PM CST
Some use Anise also.
I would feel more optimistic about a bright future for man if he spent less time proving that he can outwit Nature and more time tasting her sweetness and respecting her seniority. E. B.White
Integrity can never be taken. It can only be given, and I wasn't going to give it up to these people. Gary Mowad

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