Leaf Fennel - Key Growing Information

Planting of leaf fennel, a nonbulbing type showing the characteristic feathery fronds with the aniseed-like flavor.
DAYS TO GERMINATION: 7-14 days at 65–70°F (18–21°C).

SOWING: Direct seed (recommended): Sow seed directly in the garden as soon as possible in the spring after the last frost. Plant 1/4- 1/2" deep, 10 seeds per foot in rows 18" apart. It is not necessary to thin for leaf harvest, but can thin later to 4-6" apart if larger plants are desired.
Transplant: Sow seeds 1/4- 1/2" deep in pots and transplant outside after the last frost. Transplant 4-6" apart in rows that are 18" apart.


Prefers a very well-drained soil.



HARDINESS ZONES: Zones 7-10. Usually grown as an annual or a biennial.

HARVEST: Leaves and stems should be harvested for fresh use before the plant begins to flower. Roots may be harvested in the fall of the first year before the plant flowers. Fennel must usually be wintered over for seed production. It will bolt to produce seed the second summer in areas where it is grown as a biennial or perennial. Plants may produce seeds the first year in areas with a long cool spring. Harvest seeds as they begin to turn their characteristic grayish-green color.

Note: Too much moisture at bloom time can prevent formation of seeds.

SCIENTIFIC NAME: Foeniculum vulgare