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Dill in the garden - WCAX.COM Local Vermont News, Weather and Sports-

Dill in the garden

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BURLINGTON, Vt. -

Here at the Shelburne Museum's heirloom garden there's a beautiful patch of dill in full flower!

Of course you can use dill for a lot of things in the kitchen. You can use the leaves for cooking or let the flower heads form into seeds which you would use for making dill pickles and all kinds of other food items. You should wait until after the flowers pass before harvesting the heads for dill seeds. For pickles, use them in full flower.

The nice thing about dill also is, if you check really closely you can see a lot of insect activity on these flowers. All kinds of insects are also interested in dill flowers. Everything from honey bees, to wasps, to many kinds of different beneficial insects are feeding on the nectar that comes from the dill flowers. That's a good thing because you want to have these bees in your garden so they'll fight the other pests that might be eating your cucumbers, your tomatoes, or some of the other plants that you have in the garden.

So, if you have a dill patch, let it go to flower even if you aren't going to use the seeds. In fact, if you have radishes, mustard, lettuce, or even old carrots, if they grow up and form a nice flower head, leave some in the garden. The bees really love the flowers of these types of vegetables. You'll also get some self sowing dill seedlings for later in the season. 

So if you have dill in flower in your garden, don't necessarily rush to pull them up to get rid of them,  leave a few in there for the bees, so that they can have a place to get their food.

By Charlie Nardozzi

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