Bronze fennel is a terrific foliage plant and a great attraction for butterflies and beneficial insects. It is a preferred host plant for swallowtail butterflies. The anise-flavored leaves and seeds are used in cooking. (Also see Florence Fennel.)
In Color in the Garden, Nori and Sandra Pope describe bronze fennel as "our desert island plant, the plant we would not want to be without." The feathery foliage makes a perfect backdrop for brightly colored flowers.
Bronze fennel is hardy in zones 5-9. It can be grown as an annual in colder climates.
Sowing Bronze Fennel Seeds:
Sow outdoors in late spring. Or sow indoors 6 weeks before the last frost date, 1/8" deep. Full sun to part shade. Spacing 12".