Pimpinella anisum
Family: Umbelliferae

A highly aromatic annual, aniseed has a long history of use as a medicinal herb as well as a culinary and flavoring herb. It was known to the ancient Greeks and Romans who used it as a food additive for its aromatic and digestive qualities. It is also mentioned in the Bible. Aniseed is still used today in medicines, confectionery and for flavoring liqueurs. It is only one species in a genus of about 140 which occur naturally in parts of Africa, Europe and Asia. It generally grows to about 50 cm (20 in) high, with masses of small white flowers.


Plant in well-drained soil in a warm position. Propagate from seed, sown in early to mid-spring where the plants are to grow.


Most conditions except tropics. Fully hardy.