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Deborah August 13, 2015 01:41 PM

Question About Fennel
Does anyone know why wild fennel has that delicious licorice fragrance but the fennel sold as plants in the herb section has no scent at all?

habitat_gardener August 13, 2015 05:39 PM


I know that mediterranean/California herbs grown in lean soil and neglected, as a general rule, tend to be stronger medicinally and have stronger flavors and aromas than those grown in good garden soil with ample water.

Worth1 August 13, 2015 06:47 PM

Been a long time since I ate wild fennel from the arid slopes of California.


Father'sDaughter August 13, 2015 11:41 PM

I don't know, but herb fennel is easy to grow (not the type that bulbs -- it's a different variety). I've grown it in the past for both the pollen and the seeds, and yes it has that wonderful licorice flavor. Mine was grown from Franchi seeds I purchased from Seeds of Italy.

clkeiper August 14, 2015 12:33 PM

No idea, but I agree, it is easy to grow. it actually becomes a weed.

Worth1 August 14, 2015 02:14 PM

I have a confession to make.
When I was in the Marines in California I had never had anything that had fennel in it.
I had no idea what fennel even was or had eaten Italian sausage.
My experience with fennel comes from an idiotic test.
While on the slopes I noticed a weed growing that smelled like licorice.
So I put w wee bit in my mouth and tried it and it was good.
I didn't die or get sick so I started too increase the amount I tried and I never got sick.
So I just started eating it and the rest of the guys did too.
Then later on in life I was introduce to fennel seeds.
I noticed they tasted like the weed I was eating in California.
It was here or on garden web I asked if the weed in California was fennel.

That was when I found out for sure it was wild fennel I was eating.:lol:


Deborah August 15, 2015 12:53 AM

Worth, thank you for your service. About the fennel, thanks everyone. I'm thinking of collecting seeds next time I see wild fennel. I LOVE what others call weeds-dandelions, fennel, mustard...

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