Fennel is native to Southern Europe and grown extensively all over Europe, Middle-East, China, India, and Turkey. This herbaceous plant reaches up to 2 meters (about 6 feet) in height with deep green feathery (lacy) leaves and bears golden-yellow flowers in umbels. In general, fennel seeds harvested when their seed heads turn light-brown. The seeds, which closely resemble that of anise seeds in appearance, feature oblong or curved (comma) shape, about 3-4 mm long, light brown with fine vertical stripes over their surface.
In general, fennels are harvested during early hours of the day to avoid loss of seeds in the field. As in caraway, its stems stacked until they were dry and then threshed, processed before dispatching to the markets.
Fennel bulb (Foeniculum vulgare var. azoricum), used as a vegetable, is closely related to seeding fennel. It has grown for its anise-flavored sweet taste fronds in many parts of Mediterranean region.