Saturday, April 24, 2010

Dill. Grow it from Seed.

Dill - grows well in Alberta

Early in the spring garden there are foraged treasures, young plants to eat, wild onions, cilantro and dill, oregano and chives. Plants that just grow - without any prompting. 

Wild green onions grow year after year - around the edges of the garden. Tiny oregano leaves appear as soon as the ground has thawed. Old faithful - chives - are up early. Tarragon buds peak up quickly. A careful observation of plant growth (even weeds) provides clues of the warmth of the soil for spring planting. 

Today I am scanning for dill sprouts. Last year the dill flower heads dropped their seeds, and now, after a cold winter, the seeds are sprouting.  

Dill grows wild in the garden
Start growing dill.

One packet of dill seeds may be all you will ever need. Seeds can be saved year to year. In fact, if you let a flower head go to seed in the garden, next year dill will pop up. It is called dill weed, after all. 

Grow dill from seed directly in the fertile garden. Don't bother starting it early indoors and don't buy dill ‘bedding plants’ because dill will readily grow from seed and it doesn't like to be transplanted. A dill plant likes a sunny place in the garden. It's best harvested when young. 

Dill flowers are bright, bold and beautiful in the garden - a visual treat. Will dill take over your garden? No - it is easy to pull up. 

Dill is bright and beautiful in the garden.
Throw a few dill sprigs into a leafy salad. Dill is tasty in a Greek or potato salad. Add fresh dill to sour cream to put on top of grilled or broiled salmon. A yogurt dill sauce goes well with a chicken stew. Try a dill dip with your garden carrots.

And in wintertime....

Dill lovers rejoice! Grow dill microgreens all winter for the freshest, healthiest taste of dill. Save the seeds in autumn, and then plant in shallow containers. Dill seeds take a few days to sprout. Here's a video I made on how to grow dill microgreens at home.

Check out my video on how to grow garlic in a cold climate.

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