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Chinese Plant Names | Family List | Apiaceae | Foeniculum

Foeniculum vulgare Mill.


Description from Flora of China

Anethum foeniculum Linnaeus, Sp. Pl. 1: 263. 1753; A. pannorium Roxburgh; Foeniculum officinale Allioni; F. pannorium (Roxburgh) de Candolle; Ligusticum foeniculum (Linnaeus) Crantz; Meum foeniculum (Linnaeus) Sprengel; Selinum foeniculum (Linnaeus) E. H. L. Krause; Seseli foeniculum (Linnaeus) Koso-Poljansky.

Plants 0.4–2 m. Lower petioles 5–15 cm; blade broadly triangular in outline, 4–30 × 5–40 cm, 4–5-pinnatisect; ultimate segments linear, 1–6 × ca. 0.1 mm. Umbels 5–9 cm across; peduncles 2–25 cm; rays 6–29(–40), unequal, 1.5–10 cm; umbellules 14–39-flowered; pedicels thin, 2–10 mm, unequal. Fruit 4–6(–10) × 1.5–2.2(–2.5) mm. Fl. May–Jun, fr. Jul–Sep.

The stem, leaves, and fruit are commonly used as the dietary herb “xiao hui xiang” in traditional Chinese medicine to aid digestion. The leaves are used for flavoring and the fruits are used as a spice (fennel).

Cultivated and adventive; 200–2600 m. Throughout China [native to the Mediterranean region; cultivated and adventive worldwide].


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