Gardening where the sidewalk ends

Fabulous Fennel September 5, 2008

Oh man, this might be the perfect parking strip plant. Tall enough to provide scale and structure, but easy to whack back and see grow again next year. Hardy as heck (in Zone 8), zero care required. OK, it’s classified as a weed in some areas, but just deadhead the flowers before they go to seed, and keep after any sprouting seedlings before they get too big and they’re easy enough to control. At least that’s been my experience! I had a great-looking copper fennel (herb) in my last garden; this year I’m trying a low-growing bulbing fennel (veggie) that doesn’t seem to have much in the way of bulbs yet, hm.

This beauty is practically a grove of trees, in a neighbor’s parking strip garden:

Tall fennel

I love how the flowers attract butterflies and bees. Plus you can eat the pollen, seeds, fronds and stems, all tasting deliciously of anise. Mmmmm.

Would someone please tell me if they ever see fabric with a fennel flower print? I think I need some pillows that look like this:

Fennel sky