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For versatility in the garden, it's hard to beat beautiful, easy-grows-it dill. This herb fills a planting area with a fountain of graceful, delicate foliage. Flat flower heads beckon butterflies, bees, and other good bugs. Snip tasty foliage to flavor home-cooked fare, from potatoes, to soups, to egg dishes. Save seeds for seasoning bread, stews, root vegetable dishes, and pickles. Dill thrives in dry, sunny spots, and plants self-seed to keep the crop coming year after year. To ensure a steady supply of foliage for snipping, sow seeds every four weeks during the growing season.
Green lacewings, an aphid predator, frequent dill plantings, making dill a great companion for roses and other aphid favorites. Black swallowtail butterflies lay eggs on dill. Look for black, green, and yellow striped caterpillars munching their way along stems.
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how to grow Dill
Pick ferny leaves as needed or pull entire stems to thin plantings. Add fresh leaves to hot dishes just prior to serving because heating dissipates flavor. To preserve leaves, air-dry or freeze sprigs in air-tight bags. To use frozen dill, do not thaw; snip stems directly into dishes. Harvest seeds in fall as they start to turn brown. Clip flower heads and suspend them, upside down, inside paper sacks, so dried seeds will fall into bags.