By Jennifer Poindexter
When you think of fresh dill, what comes to mind? For me, I instantly think of pickles because they’re amazing when made from scratch.
No matter what you typically do with fresh dill, it’s important to know what your options are for any plant you choose to grow and cook with.
What you may not know is there are many varieties of dill. If this is news to you, or even if you’re curious to learn of a few extra options, you’ve come to the right place.
Dill is a celebrated herb for both its culinary purposes and use in fresh bouquets. Let’s discuss the different types of dill you can incorporate into your garden for these purposes:
What You’ll Learn
- The general growing conditions for dill
- The importance of choosing the right variety of dill for your needs
- Detailed information on 12 different varieties of dill, including Fernleaf, Delikat, Hercules, Hera, Bouquet, Teddy, Dukat, Compatto, Greensleeves, Superdukat, Long Island Mammoth, and Vierling
- The specific characteristics of each variety, including their growth habits, flavor profiles, and special features
- Tips on how to choose the best dill variety for your garden based on your purpose, available space, and climate
General Growing Conditions for Dill
Before we begin discussing different varieties of dill to choose from, it’s important to discuss the basic growing conditions dill needs.
Be sure to select a growing location with full sunlight. This means the plant should receive a minimum of six hours of direct lighting a day.
Dill must grow in soil that’s amended with compost and drains adequately. This herb also doesn’t require much fertilizer, if any, due to amending the soil prior to planting.
Also, be mindful that though dill can survive temperatures in the mid-20s (Fahrenheit), ideal soil temperatures are around 70-degrees Fahrenheit.
By starting your dill in the right growing conditions, you’re creating a firm foundation for this plant to thrive.
Types of Dill to Grow
Now that you have a better understanding of what dill requires of you when growing in your garden, let’s discuss the options available for this plant:
If you don’t have a large growing area, fernleaf dill could be the solution. This plant maxes out at two feet tall and is a compact variety.
Like most dill, this variety prefers temperatures between 50- and 80-degrees Fahrenheit. Also, be sure to provide fernleaf dill with well-draining soil that’s kept evenly damp and full sunlight.
Expect this variety of dill to germinate in approximately two to three weeks.
Dill is a great option for growing in a container. Delikat is a variety great for container gardening due to its low-growing habits.
Plus, this variety is known for having some spicier notes. It’s great for growing outdoors or in a windowsill indoors.
This allows you to enjoy fresh dill year-round, so if you’re looking for a container-friendly variety of dill with a little extra spice, this could be a good option. Expect delikat dill to germinate in approximately two to three weeks.
When you think of Hercules, what comes to mind? Probably something big and robust which fits the description of this type of dill well.
This is a taller variety of dill and known for being a grand producer. Though a larger variety, it still works well for growing in containers.
However, be sure to provide ample growing space, plenty of sunlight, and well-draining soil to keep this kind of dill healthy and productive. Hercules dill typically germinates in three to four weeks.
The hera variety is what many people recognize as traditional dill. This variety is known for being fuller and keeps a uniform growth pattern.
It’s a great producer and is slow to go to seed. If you’re interested in growing a variety of dill that you can harvest over a longer period of time, hera may be for you.
Expect this variety to germinate between one and three weeks after planting in temperatures ranging from 60- to 70-degrees Fahrenheit.
Bouquet dill is another common variety. This plant is known for producing flowers earlier in comparison to some other varieties.
Judging by the name, you’ve probably guessed this type of dill is frequently used in the creation of flower arrangements. It’s a great variety for this purpose as it’s known for being a prolific bloomer.
Expect bouquet dill to germinate in one to three weeks.
Teddy is a fluffy and fuller type of dill. The leaves are packed tightly, similar to pine needles. It’s a great variety to incorporate into a container garden.
Expect teddy dill to have a longer growing season as it’s known for taking longer to bolt. This type of dill could be great for culinary purposes or for filler in a bouquet.
If you’re considering growing teddy dill in your garden, expect it to germinate in approximately one to three weeks.
Dukat is a unique variety of dill as it has green foliage with a hint of blue. It also has a sweet flavor with a strong scent.
This type of dill is wonderful for culinary purposes, but you can also let it bloom to enjoy its appearance and to draw pollinators to the garden.
Dukat is a versatile variety of dill that germinates faster than some of the other options listed here. Expect this plant to germinate in one to two weeks.
Compatto dill is a nice variety for those who wish to grow in a kitchen window instead of in a traditional garden plot.
This type of dill is known for being a richer green and stockier than other varieties. These qualities make it an excellent addition to a container garden as it’s smaller and pleasing for aesthetic purposes.
Expect this variety to grow to be less than two feet tall and to germinate within ten days of the time of planting.
Greensleeves is a compact, slow-bolting variety of dill. This means the plant takes longer to create seed.
This is great if you need a longer harvesting window for fresh dill. If you’re growing dill for the seed, this may not be the best fit. Take your purpose for growing dill into consideration when selecting a variety.
Another perk to greensleeves dill is since it’s a compact variety, it grows well in containers. Greensleeves not only has a sweet flavor profile, but it’s also fast to germinate as the seeds typically sprout in seven days or less.
Superdukat is another variety of dill known for having a slower bolting rate. Again, if you’re growing dill for the foliage, this makes it an excellent option.
This variety is commonly used for brining or for aesthetic purposes. Since this variety grows in a uniform pattern, it’s a beautiful addition to most garden spaces.
Once you’re done harvesting, allow the plant to flower. The blooms invite pollinators into your growing space which is beneficial for any nearby plants. Superdukat should germinate within one to three weeks.
11. Long Island Mammoth
If you’d like a larger type of dill, you’re in luck. Long Island mammoth dill is a larger variety. This type of dill can grow to be over three feet in height.
This variety is best for inground garden plots or large containers. It’s also known for having a stronger scent than some of the other varieties mentioned here.
Long Island mammoth dill is great for use in brines, bouquets when flowering, or for drawing pollinators to your growing space. Expect Long Island mammoth to germinate in one to two weeks after sowing.
Vierling is known for being useful for culinary purposes and in creating homemade bouquets. It produces fragrant and delicious foliage, gorgeous blooms, and useful seeds.
The beautifully colored flowers produced by dill are also helpful for drawing pollinators to the area.
Therefore, if you need a variety of dill that is multi-purpose, this could be a great option for you. Vierling typically germinates in one to three weeks from the time of sowing.
You now have twelve different varieties of dill to consider incorporating into your growing space. Decide what purpose you’d like dill to serve in this space.
From there, pick the variety which meets this need. You may also want to consider the germination time along with the growing window in your planting zone.
When you take these things into consideration, you should be able to grow a gorgeous variety of dill that’s useful and aesthetically pleasing.
- Dill needs full sunlight, well-draining soil amended with compost, and a temperature around 70 degrees Fahrenheit for optimal growth.
- There are many varieties of dill to choose from, each with unique characteristics, making them suitable for different purposes and growing conditions.
- Some dill varieties are great for small spaces or container gardening (like Fernleaf and Delikat), while others are more suitable for large garden plots (like Hercules and Long Island Mammoth).
- Certain varieties have special features, like a slower bolting rate (Greensleeves, Superdukat), unique foliage color (Dukat), or a particularly strong scent (Long Island Mammoth).
- Many dill varieties not only serve culinary purposes but also have aesthetic value and can attract pollinators to your garden.
- Choosing the right variety involves considering your purpose, the available space, and the climate in your planting zone.
Quick Reference Chart for Dill Varieties
|Dill Variety||Characteristics||Why to Grow|
|Fernleaf||Compact, max 2 ft tall||Ideal for small spaces, prefers temperatures between 50-80°F|
|Delikat||Low-growing, spicier notes||Great for container gardening, can be grown indoors|
|Hercules||Tall, robust, productive||Ideal for containers, requires ample space and sunlight|
|Hera||Full, uniform growth, slow to seed||Longer harvest period, traditional dill variety|
|Bouquet||Early bloomer, prolific||Ideal for flower arrangements, common dill variety|
|Teddy||Fluffy, full, slow to bolt||Great for container gardening, useful for culinary purposes and as a bouquet filler|
|Dukat||Green-blue foliage, sweet flavor||Ideal for culinary purposes and attracting pollinators, quick to germinate|
|Compatto||Rich green, stocky||Ideal for container or window gardening, aesthetic value|
|Greensleeves||Compact, slow bolting||Longer harvest period, grows well in containers, quick to germinate|
|Superdukat||Slow bolting, uniform growth||Useful for brining and aesthetics, attracts pollinators|
|Long Island Mammoth||Large, strong scent||Ideal for large containers or inground plots, useful for brines and bouquets|
|Vierling||Fragrant, multi-purpose||Useful for culinary purposes and bouquets, attracts pollinators|