Sweet Florence is the old traditional variety which is best used for later summer sowings when bolting is not normally a problem. It has a fine flavour and the leaves can be used as a herb in fish dishes etc.
A vegetable plant to grace any plot, an attractive vegetable with tall stems and feathery green foliage. Unlike the fennel in the herb section which is grown specifically for its leaves, the Florence Fennel is grown for the bulbous swollen plant base which can be used chopped raw in salads, braised as a vegetable or added to delicious winter casseroles. It has a delicious mild aniseed flavour and a texture which is much like that of celery.
WHEN TO SOW
April to May
Where to Sow
Sow direct into vegetable plot , sow seeds thinly along rows 2cm (3/4in) deep and 30-45cm (12-18in) between the rows.
What to do next
Fennel does not like root disturbance so should not be transplanted. Thin seedlings as soon as large enough to handle to 25-30cm (10-12in) apart. Water well until plants are established. As the swollen stems start to develop, gradually build earth up around them to preserve the whiteness and flavour.
Bulbs ready from September and October, Leaves can be used from July.
The whole plant has a flavour, leaves for fish dishes, stems and bulbs raw in salads or braised as a vegetable.
Rich in antioxidant flavonoides and vitamin C as well as a good source of fibre.