Anethum graveolens, the botanical name for dill, was deduced from the strong scent of its flowers. When the flora has been handled, a prominent smell of aniseed emerges from the plant.
The ridged, hollow stems of dill carry flower heads that somewhat resemble umbrellas. The delicate flowers typically come in a golden yellow colour, while the plant has rather delicate leaves that can grow to about 20cm in length.
Native to the Mediterranean, dill has been discovered in many places across Europe. There have even been traces of it found in some of the Roman ruins in the UK.
Dill is primarily available from springtime through to autumn, but it is cultivated in and exported from many countries around the world, including Cyprus and now even the UK.
Dill is actually the only species in the Anethum genus, but it is related to various other herbaceous plants, like fennel, and some vegetables.
Since dill is primarily grown for its seeds and foliage, it is not particularly difficult to cultivate. One of the only things to which it is susceptible is strong wind, so be sure to keep it well protected and, simultaneously, well exposed to sunlight.
The main focus for anybody growing dill should be to keep the plant free from weeds. It doesn’t require much watering, either, so it is one of the easiest plants to care for in any garden.
Did you know?
- The dill is a floral cousin of the carrot, but the two are not thought to be good planting companions.
- The aniseed scent of the plant has often been utilised for medicinal purposes as well as in cooking. It goes well with fish.