Common Anise Guide

Get out your teapot and sweet tooth! Anise is commonly used in tea, cookies, and other baked goods and has a delicious licorice flavor. Anise can help the digestive system as well as nausea, and is full of iron, manganese, and calcium. When in bloom Anise produces beautiful delicate white flowers.

TO SOW

Anise grows best after all danger of frost has passed in warmer weather between 60°F-90°F. They do great in containers and small gardens. Bank on Seeds recommends direct seeding.

If Direct Seeding

  • Direct seed outside 1-2 weeks after last frost date; or
  • Direct seed into a container 8-10 inches deep and wide anytime of the year. It can be placed outside when the temperature is between 65°F-90°F; or

If Transplanting

Begin the growing season early and start the anise seeds indoors in biodegradable trays or pods that let the roots grow through 6-8 weeks before the last frost date; germination is best between 70°F-80°F. It can be transplanted outside 10 weeks later.  Anise grows a tender taproot so be incredibly careful when moving.

Sow seeds ¼ inch deep and an inch apart with rows spaced 18-24 inches apart. Germination will take 8-14 days. Thin the seedlings to 10 inches apart if they start competing for space or light.

TO GROW

Grow anise in well-draining soil rich with organic matter. Anise likes partial shade and regular watering at the beginning of their growth. Once matured, water anise when the ground starts to dry out on the top 4-6 inches or if in a container, water when the top 2-3 inches are dry. Overall, underwatering is preferable to overwatering as anise can withstand periods of drought.

If grown outdoors, stake the plant, as its long tender stem can break in strong winds.

Option to add compost onto the top layer of soil or mix into the soil for continued nutrition for the plants. Fertilizer is usually unnecessary but general- or all-purpose fertilizer such as 10-10-10 can be used just before anise begins to flower.

TO REAP

Days to maturity take 120-130 days. Starting around the 100th day, you can start to snip the leaves for use as needed before the plant blooms. Don’t take more than a fifth of the leaves at a time. Since anise is an annual, you can harvest the seeds to plant next year.

*Companion plant anise with cabbages and coriander but avoid planting with basil, carrots, or radishes. *