Belonging to the Anthriscus genus, Chervil has a botanical name of Anthriscus cerefolium.
WARNING: POISON HEMLOCK RESEMBLES CHERVIL, SEE NOTE BELOW ON IDENTIFICATION
Chervil has flat, light green and lacy leaves, which have a flavor somewhere between parsley and anise. The plant strongly resembles parsley and even more strongly resembles poison hemlock. The leaves turn reddish-brown as the plant matures. It blooms in mid-summer, producing tiny white flowers, and reseeds. It is one of the classic French “fines herbs”, but it does not store or transport well, making it an ideal candidate for the garden.
NOTE: If you have poison hemlock growing as a weed in your garden, it is important to learn to distinguish it from chervil. The differences:
1. Poison hemlock is a larger, more robust plant.
2. Poison hemlock stems have purple spots.
3. Poison hemlock leaves smell like parsnips and taste nauseating; chervil leaves have a mild anise scent and taste.
4. Poison hemlock contains a neurotoxin, and eating it will make you feel “not very chervil” as it can result in death.
5. As the old saying goes “When in doubt throw it out”.
Blooms appear in these approximate colours: White. The mature flowers are of a single form. Leaves appear approximately as a Apple green
It is a flowering herb that typically grows as an annual, which is defined as a plant that matures and completes its lifecycle over the course of a single year.
Chervil normally grows to a phorb habit with a max height of 1.62 feet (that's 50.0 cm metric). This plant tends to bloom in mid summer, followed by first harvests in late spring.
This plant is a great attractor for bees, so if you are looking to attract wildlife Chervil is a great choice.
Being a fairly low maintenance plant, Chervil is normally quite easy to grow provided a minimum level of care is given throughout the year. It will be helpful to note the correct soil, sun and water needs of this plant to ensure that this plant thrives.
This plant info is provided by the myfolia gardener's wiki. All details about Chervil have been kindly provided by our members.
Chervil prefers a moist, shady spot in the garden. It bolts quickly, so it is best grown in Spring and Fall. Succession sow for a continuous supply.2
Sow chervil seeds close together. The crowded stems will help each other to stay upright. This method will also suppress weeds and the soil will not splash on the leaves.2
Try to plant in a location that enjoys partial sun / dappled sun and remember to water moderately. Keep in mind when planting that Chervil is thought of as half hardy, so although it can survive a small mild cold snap, it is wise to ensure that this plant is protected from frost damage.
See our list of companion Plants for Chervil to see which plants you should plant in close proximity to encourage growth.
Chervil does not respond well to being transplanted. It’s better to direct sow it.As Chervil is half hardy, ensure temperatures are mild enough to plant out - wait until after your last frost date to be on the safe side.
Pick the leaves.
These estimates for how long Chervil takes to sprout, grow and harvest are from real observations from real gardeners, right around the world.
Average 8 days | Min 2 days | Max 20 days (26)
Average 24 days | Min 14 days | Max 62 days (6)
Average 76 days | Min 56 days | Max 126 days (5)
May promote lust.1
Anthriscus cerefolium (L.) Hoffm.