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Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs


Other Common Names Include:

Common dill, American dill, European dill, Danish dill, garden dill.

Latin Name: Anethum graveolens

Plant Family: Umbelliferae

Close Relatives: Carrot, fennel, parsley, cilantro

Uses and Markets: Culinary (flavouring, garnish, pickling).  

Young dill plants grown for fresh herb sales. Flower heads of dill are often sold for pickling.
Production Life Cycle in Ontario


Hardiness Zone


Special Notes


Propagation method


Greenhouse Seeding/Propagation Dates

Transplanting is not recommended for commercial production. Can be grown in a greenhouse for the potted herb market.

Field Seeding Date:

Late April, Early May.

Field Transplanting Dates


In-row spacing

1-2 cm typically in bands 5-10 cm wide (dill weed production); 15-20 cm (flower head or seed production).

Between row spacing

30-60 cm

Optimal Soil temperature at planting



No current Ontario fertility recommendations exist. Research and recommendations from outside Ontario do not necessarily apply to Ontario growing conditions. The nitrogen recommendation in Alberta is 65 kg/ha broadcast or sidedressed at planting. Research from the Netherlands shows an optimal nitrogen rate between 30 and 60 kg/ha. Click here for phosphorus and potassium application guidelines and for more information on specialty crop fertility.

Soil type

Well drained soils.

Soil pH


Special requirements for growth habit


Optimal Temperature Range


Temperature sensitivity

Frost tolerant.

Irrigation requirements

Irrigation is beneficial under normal Ontario conditions. Overhead irrigation is recommended at the seedling stage.

Days to harvest

30-55 (dill weed); 60-80 (flower heads); 100-115 (seed).

Specialized equipment:



Dill weed is harvested before flower development when plants are 15-20 cm tall by bunching whole plants with 12-18 plants per bunch. Flower heads and dill seed can also be harvested (e.g. for pickling).

Harvest Scheduling

Single harvest - successive plantings (weekly intervals); Multi-cropping possible.

Hand harvest or machine harvest

Hand harvest

Quality parameters/grades

No established grades. Quality is determined by the market.

Additional Harvest Notes

Harvest during cooler parts of the day to reduce moisture loss and cooling costs. Remove field heat as soon as possible after harvest.

Post harvest
Special handling/curing


Storage Conditions

Relative humidity (RH): 95-100%

Temperature: 0-1°C

Air Exchange: N/A

Duration: 7-14 days

Specific pests observed on this crop in Ontario (observations based on limited experience with this crop)

Insects and Invertebrates: Parsleyworm (Papilio polyxenes)

Diseases: Phoma blight (Phoma anethi), damping off, root and crown rots

Other Potential Pests: The following pests have not been observed on this crop in Ontario. However, they are either significant concerns for closely related plants in Ontario, or are reported on this crop in other production areas. This is not a comprehensive list of all potential pests. Not all of these pests will necessarily survive Ontario’s climate, but could potentially survive in a protected environment (e.g. greenhouse, storage facility).

Insects and Invertebrates: Aphids, plant bugs, carrot rust fly (Psila rosae), cutworms, hornworms

Diseases: Dill blight (Cercosporidium punctum), aster yellows*, fungal leaf blights (Alternaria)


To date the following pests have been the most significant in Ontario: phoma blight, root and crown rots. This crop is in Crop Group 19: Herbs and Spices Group and subgroup 19A: Herb Subgroup when grown as an herb. This crop is in Crop Group 19: Herbs and Spices Group and subgroup 19B: Spice Subgroup, if it is harvested for its seeds. This crop group is being revised and may change in the near future. For more information on Crop Groups, refer to the Pest section.  Always refer to product labels, and follow all directions specified on the label, before applying any pest control product.  For more information, consult an OMAFRA specialist. For pest control products registered on this crop refer to OMAFRA Publication 838.

Additional Notes


Ontario Research Projects Used to Create This Profile
  1. McKeown, A.W., C.J. Bakker and J. Schooley. 1998-2002. Herb Demonstration Garden, University of Guelph Simcoe Research Station, unpublished.
  2. Westerveld, S., Elford, E., Filotas, M. and J. Todd. 2010-present. OMAFRA herb demonstration garden. OMAFRA Simcoe Resource Centre, unpublished.
  1. Cuthbertson, Y. 2006. Success with Herbs. Guild of Master Craftsman Publications Ltd., East Sussex, UK.
  2. Kowalchik, C. and W. H. Hylton. 1998. Rodale’s Illustrated Encyclopedia of Herbs. Rodale Press, Emaus PA.
  3. Lees, B. 1998. Dill. Alberta Agriculture and Rural Development:
  4. Li, T.S.C. 2000. Medicinal Plants: Culture, Utilization and Phytopharmacology. CRC Press, Ann Arbor, MI.
  5. McHoy, P. and P. Westland. 1994. The Herb Bible: The Ultimate Herb Reference Book. New Burlington Books, London UK.
  6. Oregon State University. 2002. Dill.
  7. Small, E. 2006. Culinary herbs, 2nd Edition. NRC Research Press, Ottawa.
  8. The Grower’s Guide to Herbs and Spices. 1995. Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada.
  9. Wander,  J.G.N. and H.J. Bouwmeester. 1998. Effects of nitrogen fertilization on dill (Anethum graveolens L.) seed and carvone production. Industrial Crops and Products 7: 211-216.