Bulb Fennel, Finocchio, or Florence fennel is grown for unique, anise flavoured bulbs. Planting fennel seeds is easy and rewarding, culminating in bulbs crowned with feathery fronds. Fennel bulbs are coveted in gourmet circles. Finely shaved fennel mixed with orange makes a classic summer salad. Roasted fennel, with its anise flavour makes it a perfect fit for fall meals. Often the fronds are added to a dish for an extra flavour kick and pretty garnish. The anise flavour of fennel comes from anethole, an aromatic compound also found in anise and star anise. The bulbs are best harvested before the flower stalk forms.