Dill, Fernleaf

'Fernleaf' Dill or dwarf dill, grows best in full sun, good drainage area with rich-loamy soil. Plant starter plants in clumps to get a maximum bushy effect. A hardy annual that grows about 18" high. Grown more so for it's foliage than it's seed, does well in potted gardens. Stagger your plantings of dill to ensure a continuous supply. Blooms late summer with flat, yellow umbels that give away to seed late fall.

The aromatic blossoms of 'Fernleaf' dill are sweet and spicy with foliage that has a crisp, grassy scent. Black swallow-tail caterpillars are attracted to dill.

Dill produces seed heads which are edible. Mixed with garlic, sugar, vinegar, salt & pepper and filled with young cucumbers in a sealed jar, produces dill pickles. Various precise pickle recipes are found at: allrecipes.com / epicurious.com Dill leaves are good in sour cream for a dip or sprinkled at the last minute on sautéed green beans and squash. Snip 'Fernleaf' dill with scissors, instead of ripping with a knife, to avoid losing essential oils.

Though dill looks a lot like fennel, it's not recommended not to plant them together. They'll cross pollinate and the individual flavors will be lost. Dill blossoms attract beneficial garden insects, like 'lady bugs', which eat aphids. Companion planting dill enhances the growth of cabbage, onions, and lettuce, but not helpful to carrots.

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