A long lasting annual herb growing to 3-4 feet tall, resembling wild carrot. It has an upright growth habit and a very dense leaf mass and yellow flowers. The dark blue-green ferny foliage is highly aromatic. often used used in pickling. Grow in a nice sunny piece of land that is fairly well drained; soil type is not critical – dill is almost “weed-like” in its ability to adapt to soil and climate conditions. Cut in bunches about 2 feet from the soil. Use the top half of the plant – particularly the seeds, and the fresh or dried flower heads and leaves in making dill pickles.
Dill is native to southern Russia, western Africa and the Mediterranean region. It has been used for its culinary and medicinal properties for millennia. Dill was mentioned both in the Bible and in ancient Egyptian writings. It was popular in the ancient Greek and Roman cultures, where it was considered a sign of wealth and was revered for its many healing properties. Dill was used by Hippocrates, the father of medicine, in a recipe for cleaning the mouth. Ancient soldiers would apply burnt dill seeds to their wounds to promote healing.
The curative properties of dill have been honored throughout history. The Conqueror Charlemagne even made it available on his banquet tables, so his guests who indulged too much could benefit from its carminative properties. Today, dill is a noted herb in the cuisines of Scandinavia, Central Europe, North Africa and the Russian Federation.