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Thank for your help
It is fennel.
looking close up at the joints, I would say it may be bamboo. Someone else here will tell you more
The dead flowerheads suggest Fennel to me too.
Sorry artjak, it's definitely fennel. Seed heads on top photo and new foliage growing at base of plant in the second photo confirm it.
100% not bamboo, ah Fennel, perfect thanks for that, I thought both pictures would help
Oh one question, I looked on RHS Fennel and it said no pruning required, so am I not to cut down the old material down to the base so that new growth occurs???
Cut the old stems down to the base. You can see already the new foliage coming through and the shoots will follow. You don't need to do anything else.
Ok thanks Daintiness
Fennel is easy to identify. crush a few leaves between your fingers and smell the aniseedy type smell.
Paul, I think "no pruning required" means, it dies down of its own accord but you can just snap off the old stems. " no pruning required"
You can cut the old stems down with secateurs, but at this time of year, the old stems will just snap off. Usually, heavy snow would have flattened it by now,
Save the old stems to dry out and put on the BBQ when cooking fish - will give lovely aroma - or use them to make a bug box
I always grow a few fennel plants in an odd corner, they are the favourite food for swallow tail butterflies, you can see the caterpillars on them in late summer.