Florence Fennel is an organically grown and very sweet and deliciously flavoured fennel variety. It's grown for its delicious, fleshy, fragrant and anish flavoured bulbs. This plant grows to about 92 cm in size and is also suited for smaller gardens and plots. The bulbs can be steamed, cooked or used raw in salads. It's feathery foliage is often used with chickendishes, fish, in sauces and saladdressings.
Florence Fennel is an organically grown and a deliciously sweet and great-tasting vegetable. Florence Fennel is also called Florentine Fennel. This type of fennel originally comes from the Mediterranean and is still a very popular and widely eaten vegetable there. This vegetable is increasingly becoming well-known and poppular, in our colder climate (the Netherlands). This vegetable is specially grown for its fleshy and delicious aniseed-tasting bulb, but the leaves of this fennel are also edible and can be used to season all kinds of dishes with its aniseed-like flavour. This leaf tastes great with chicken dishes, fish dishes, in soups, in sauces and in salad dressings.
Fennel is a very healthy and versatile vegetable. It contains the following vitamins and minerals, among others: vitamin A, B1, B2, B3, B5, B6, B11, C, E and K. and the minerals: calcium, phosphorus, iron, iodine, copper, magnesium, manganese, sodium, selenium and zinc. Fennel is also high in fibre and low in calories. This versatile vegetable can be boiled, stewed, stir-fried, grilled and steamed. Fennel can also be used in casseroles, in stews, in soups and sauces. Raw thinly sliced fennel tubers are also delicious in salads. Fennel combines well with salmon, prawns, cod, chicken, goat cheese, garlic, rosemary, thyme, tarragon, curry powder, avocado, crème fraîche and pasta. The following vegetables also combine well with fennel: beets, courgette, tomatoes, pumpkin, leeks and onion. Non-hardy annual.
Indoor sowing: late March - half May
Outdoor sowing: May - June
Sowing depth.: ½ cm
Germination: 10 - 20 days
Germination temp. : 20 - 22 °C
Plant distance: 20 cm
Plant distance between rows: 45 cm
Plant position: sunny - sheltered
Harvest period: July - October
Sow fennel indoors, for an early harvest. Sow from late March to mid-May. Keep in mind that the plants should be put in the open ground 4 - 5 weeks after sowing. So take night frosts into account. Use seed trays with separate compartments or small pots. This is to make transplanting the seedlings into the open ground easier without disturbing the roots too much. Use well-moistened sowing soil and ensure good drainage. Cover the seeds with a thin layer of sowing soil. They need light and warmth to germinate. Fennel needs a position that is sunny and sheltered. This plant does have some requirements for its location: the soil should be well fertilised beforehand, moisture-retaining but well-draining. Heavy clay soil, stony soil and poorly draining soil are not suitable. On these, the fennel will bolt very quickly and not produce any bulbs.
Sow outdoors from mid-May, after all chance of night frost is gone. When sowing in rows, keep about 45 cm space between the rows. Cover the seeds with a thin layer of sowing soil. As soon as the seedlings are large enough to handle, they can be thinned out at 20 cm. Fennel needs a sheltered, sunny spot with good drainage. Water regularly to prevent drying out. Remove weeds carefully. Raising the soil around the roots makes the tubers whiter and sweeter. Don't sow too close to dill and other fennel varieties to avoid cross-pollination.
When the fennel bulbs are about 5 cm in size, they can be harvested. Remove the bulbs carefully from the ground with a pitchfork. Carefully cut off the bulbs just above the ground.This allows the roots to remain in the ground, from which feathery shoots soon emerge. These can be cut of and used as garnish a.o. Fennelbulbs can be stored in a cool place for about 3 weeks .Fennel can also be frozen.