By: Heather Rhoades
Dill is a popular herb in the kitchen, flavoring everything from pickles to fish. Gourmets know that you can’t beat fresh dill for the flavor. The best way to have the very freshest dill possible is by growing dill in your own garden. Let’s look at how to grow dill.
The best way how to grow dill is directly from seeds rather than from a transplant. Planting dill seed is easy. Dill planting is simply done by scattering the seeds in the desired location after the last frost, then lightly cover the seeds with soil. Water the area thoroughly.
Growing dill plants and caring for dill plants is also very easy. Dill weed plants grow best in full sun. Other than this, dill will grow happily in both poor and rich soil or in damp or dry conditions.
One of the benefits of growing dill is that both the leaves and seeds of dill weed plants are edible.
To harvest the dill leaves, regularly trim off the desired amount of leaves you need for cooking. If you wish to harvest dill seeds, allow the plant to grow without trimming until it goes into bloom. Once dill weed plants go into bloom, they’ll stop growing leaves, so make sure that you don’t harvest any leaves from that plant. The dill flower will fade and will develop the seed pods. When the seed pods have turned brown, cut the whole flower head off and place in a paper bag. Gently shake the bag. The seeds will fall out of the flower head and seed pods and you’ll be able to separate the seeds from the waste.
There are many recipes that use dill. Planting this herb in your garden will keep plenty of fresh dill on hand for all of these recipes. Now that you know how to grow dill, you have no reason not to be planting dill seed out this year.
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Are you interested in dill for a garnish? Or how about to flavor pickles?
There are more ways to use dill than you can count. But in order to have the most success with the uses of dill, you have to identify the correct type to grow.
I am recommending five general types of Dill Plants when learning how to grow dill from seed.
These are the easiest dill to grow from seed and plant. Also, these four provide the most uses.
Bouquet Dill is the most common dill in the entire world.
This is typically what you see in your average grocery store and farmers’ markets.
This type of dill has dark-blue & green colors, is aromatic, and can be sprinkled on a wide array of food and is perfect for pickling.
Bouquet Dill grows 2 feet tall and is ready 90 days after planting your seeds.
Best of all is that you can grow this dill in a pot, raised garden bed, or in a traditional garden.
Dukat Dill is also known as tetra dill and is mainly grown for its rich foliage and strong aroma.
This Dill is the perfect type of dill for salads and other green leafy dishes.
The seeds of the Dukat Dill herb is perfect as an added condiment to almost any dish you need to add a subtle, but tasty flavor.
This type of dill is an annual herb that grows 2 feet tall and is also ready to pick 60-90 days after you plant your seeds.
Superdukat is the newest type of dill. It was introduced in 1997 and has the same uses as the dukat dill.
It was introduced to gardening to make it easier to harvest than other types of dill.
And if you are looking for a dill herb that has the most oil in its stems than look no further. This is the best way to add the most flavor to your food dishes.
This type of dill is an annual herb that grows to be 2 feet tall and can be harvested within 60 days.
Fernleaf dill is a great dill that can be planted in containers or indoors.
This type of dill only grows 18 inches, so it does not be staked and can grow literally anywhere in your yard.
This is the perfect type of herb that can be used in a flower arrangement.
DAYS TO GERMINATION: 7-21 days at 65–70°F (18–21°C).
SOWING: Successive sowings can be done every three weeks to harvest fresh greens continuously.
Direct seed (recommended): Sow in spring as soon as the soil can be worked. Plant seeds 1/8- 1/4" deep, 2 seeds per inch. Thinning is not necessary, but a 4" final spacing produces healthy, full plants.
Transplant: Dill can be started inside in individual containers or cell trays. Sow 3-5 seeds per cell and thin to 1-2 plants each. Transplant to garden using 4" spacing in rows at least 12" apart.
LIGHT PREFERENCE: Sun.
SOIL REQUIREMENTS: Prefers a rich, light soil, but will grow in most soils.
HARVEST: Foliage may be harvested once the plants have become established right up to flowering. Harvest seed heads just as the seeds begin to turn a golden brown. Foliage and seeds can both be dried and stored for future use.
Dill grown outside matures about 90 days after seeding. Although the leaves can be harvested as soon as they are big enough to use, they contain the most flavors if picked before flowering begins. Clip them close to the stem in the early morning or late evening.
Once the flowers form, they will bloom and seed. Cut the seed heads 2 to 3 weeks after bloom. Place the cuttings in paper or plastic bags, and allow them to dry the seeds will fall off when they are ready.
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Do you have a question -or- need to contact an expert?
Dill is a savory and attractive addition to the landscape – not to mention the kitchen – but gardeners should give some thought and attention to where it is grown.
Combined with the right plants, it will thrive or enable others to thrive.
Do you do dill? In the comments section below, share your experiences growing this flavorful herb.
If you’d like more information about growing herbs, check out these articles next:
© Ask the Experts, LLC. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. See our TOS for more details. Originally published on January 10, 2020. Last updated: March 25, 2021 at 23:57 pm. Uncredited photos: Shutterstock.
A former garden editor for a daily newspaper in Austin, Texas, Gretchen Heber goes through entirely too many pruners and garden gloves in a year’s time. She’s never met a succulent she didn’t like and gets really irritated every 3-4 years when Austin actually has a freeze cold enough to kill them. To Gretchen, nothing is more rewarding than a quick dash to the garden to pluck herbs to season the evening meal. And it’s definitely time for a happy dance when she’s able to beat the squirrels to the peaches, figs, or loquats.