Would I plant it in my garden? I might, if I had a large expanse of naturalistic meadow planting. In its favour, it’s native, and rather beautiful. But it can be something of a thug both being a prodigious self-seeder and possessing the ability to reproduce through a spreading rhizome system. It will also hybridize with other members of the carrot family, so if you grow dill or fennel, for example, you will need to sow fresh seed from a trusted source every year in order to keep the plants true to type. In a smaller garden I might be inclined to use something like Bishop’s Weed, Ammi majus, to achieve a similar effect.
Being a native plant it has a host of common names (see here on the excellent seedaholics website for a full list), among them Wild chervil, Lady’s needlework or Queen Anne’s Lace (also a common name for Ammi majus). But my favourites are Devil’s parsley and Naughty man’s oatmeal.
|Adding a frothy element to Andy Sturgeon’s Chelsea garden|
Main image copyright © fionaandneill, on Flickr.