Last summer I planted a little Fennel seeding and it grew a little and had a lovely licorice favor. I did not know much about it and mostly overlooked it last year. Well it was not to be overlooked this year! The fennel grew back and by mid-June was over 6 feet tall. This fierce growth was intimidating so it caused me to learn more about it. The fennel type is Foeniculum vulgare; which have feather like leafs which have a sweet aniseed favor.
It filled up with yellow flowers which the yellow-jackets and wasps enjoyed very much.
From what I have read, this type of fennel does not produce a bulb for cooking. The cooking bulb is from the Florence Fennel. I'm in the process of trimming the seeded flowers as they grow yellow and light brown for food seasoning. (I do not want hundreds of fennel plants in my lawn and neighbors' next year!) When I'm finished gathering the seeds, I'm going to dig down and see what the fennel bulb looks like. If I learn that it cannot be used in cooking, I might just place it back in the ground and see what happens next Spring.
Fresh fennel can be sprinkled on fresh fruit and honey to enhance the favor. I'm also adding it to salad greens to kick up the salad just a little. The quantity used should never overwhelm the food, but help a guest enjoy it more.
August 28, 2015 DJ Cards and More