So I'm branching out this year and bought three herb plants to grow, oregano, parsley & dill. They all seem to be growing well especially the dill. Since this new to me I'm not sure what to do with it, as in when to harvest and how to harvest. Basically I want it for making dill pickles. Should I cut some off to let dry or let it grow til the cucumbers are ready to make pickles?
Hi deckman22, I grew some dill a few years ago for pickles. I let it grow until the cucumbers were ready and then cut it. What I did not use went to seed. There were seeds everywhere. The next year I had dill growing all over the place!
Post by desertwoman on Apr 5, 2018 21:16:31 GMT -5
When I made pickles I aimed to use fresh dill flower heads anytime from before the flowers open, to after seeds form-green seeds are best, imo, but any stage is fine to use.) Sometimes the dill and cucumbers aren't ready at the same time. In that case use dried dill seed.
And besides that, dill is one of the best great magnets for beneficial insects. That might be a good thing it's all over the place! dave9354,
Northern New Mexico Zone 6b (formerly Zone 5) Posting since 2005
Dill here comes up every year en masse...so much that I use it as mulch here and there...
Besides leaving it to just grow as desertwoman said for the beneficials and to go to seed for next year's crop, I harvest lots of the nice fronds and freeze them...
Gather a whole bunch of them and force them tightly into a cigar shape on a length of Saran wrap, then wrap it up... When you need dill, just slice or shave off as much as you need from the frozen 'cigar'... Tastes just like fresh...
I do the same thing with parsley...
I believe restless said she does a similar thing in a ziplock instead of Saran...
I garden ~~~ Therefore I am
OG Member since 2002 ~~~ Southeastern PA ~~~ Zone 7a
To use as dill weed, I cut the fronds when they are small and very soft to the touch. They can be dried or frozen for future use. As the plant grows, the softness is gone and the fronds begin to look different.
I use celery seed in mine too. I make it kinda like my mom did except I add 2-3 slices of bacon crunched up in bits and sliced olives. Her mom always put olives in hers & I learned to like that.
Thanks to all for the info on dill. I'm told it will die off in the summer heat here so I'll go ahead and pick some now, dry some and freeze some. I've got the cucumbers planted put they are just barely past sprouts, the dill could be gone by the time they come in. Hopefully I can get some seeds too.
Now the dill plant looks like it is going to flower. This is the best part for making pickels?
I have noticed the branches change color as they get bigger, from a paler green to a darker green. I've nipped both so see how they compare. I did try some of the dill frozen. Did not have any saran wrap so I wadded it up and put in a gallon bag rolling it in the bag then to the freezer. No mistaking what it is when you pinch the branches off. I hope it retains the flavor dried & frozen.
Its the beginning of the caterpillar season here and noticed some on the dill plant. I would have thought with the strong smell it would repel them, I guess not. I hate caterpillars and have no problem pinching them unless they are the hairy variety that can sting you. A pair of tin snips works well on those.
deckman22 ...Not a pickle maker...Can't give advice on that... But your caterpillars may be Black Swallowtail Butterfly caterpillars...They love dill... I always have plenty of dill out there to allow them to live and forage as they like... Here's a pictoral link to them...
We had a good downpour weekend before last and the dill has exploded. The heads are beginning to flower and some bug that looks like a small lightning bug is all over the flowers. Looks like they are doing the job of bees so I'm not running them off. I'm told once the heat of summer sets in the dill will disappear, hoping to get cucumbers before that happens.