Wild Herb That Looks Like Anise
Answered by: Conrad Richter
Question from: Elaine McCarley
Posted on: June 28, 2005

Do you know of anyone having a photo or image of Pimpinella Anisum (Anise)? I found a wild herb growing by my back fence and am trying to identify it. All I have is a black and white photo from a book and it doesn’t reveal much. This plant looks like Anise but has small yellow flowers instead of white flowers. I’m puzzled. Can you offer any assistance?

There is a picture of anise on our website:

http://www.richters.com/Web_store/web_store.cgi?product=X1140

In this picture the flowers should be white. The flowers in the online picture are a little past their prime and seeds are beginning to form, but anise flowers definitely are not yellow.

Anise belongs to the parsley family, the Apiaceae, and there are many weeds and wild plants that belong to the same family. These plants often are close enough alike that they can easily be misidentified as safe-to-use herbs. But the parsley family has poisonous members, so it is critical that you know exactly which plant you have in your garden before you use it. There are books that help to identify wild plants and weeds, but if you are not sure what you have then don’t use it.

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