Fennel Foeniculum vulgare Mill. (Foeniculum officinale L.)**



Fennel is a one-year or perennial herbaceous plant of the family Umbelliferae (Umbelliferae). One year old plants have a long, slightly branched root, and the stem reaches a height of 1 m. Perennials have a highly developed spindle, long and thick root. In the case of adult root crops, there are several annual stems reaching up to 2 m in height. Stems are upright, round, bare, interspersed, blue-green. Flowers are yellow, collected in sophisticated shades. The fruit is a two-part, almost cylindrical, gray-green, naked. It blooms in the summer, and the fruits ripen in autumn. The plant has a strong, pleasant smell.

In Bulgaria fennel is cultivated, usually where the vine grows.

The fruit (Fructus Foeniculi) is used. Picking in July - September. During waxy maturity it contains the most essential oil. It comes back when the fruit begins to turn yellow, the entire surface of the plant or the sunshine rises early in the morning or in the evening.

Fennel is used in medicine as gastric, gingival, coughing and facilitating digestion, in colic in children, to increase milk in nursing mothers.

The essential oil produced by the frying is used in perfumery, food, canning, liqueur, soap and bakery industries, and anethole in the distillation industry for the preparation of mastic.