Ferula communis

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Giant Fennel
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Plantae
(unranked): Angiosperms
(unranked): Eudicots
(unranked): Asterids
Order: Apiales
Family: Apiaceae
Genus: Ferula
Species: F. communis
Binomial name
Ferula communis
Ferula communis - MHNT

Ferula communis (the giant fennel) is a species in the genus Ferula of the Apiaceae. Despite the name, the plant is not a type of fennel proper, which belongs to another genus (Foeniculum).

Ferula communis is a tall herbaceous perennial. It is found in Mediterranean woodlands and shrublands.[1] It was known in antiquity as narthex.[2]

The name of the phenolic compound ferulic acid comes from the giant fennel Latin name, where the compound can be isolated.

In Greek mythology, Prometheus steals fire from the gods to give to man by hiding it in a fennel stalk.[3]


  1. ^ Flora of Israel Online entry
  2. ^ Kandeler, R.; Ullrich, W. R. (2009). "Symbolism of plants: Examples from European-Mediterranean culture presented with biology and history of art: MARCH: Silphion and narthex". Journal of Experimental Botany 60 (3): 715–717. doi:10.1093/jxb/erp041. PMID 19269995.  edit
  3. ^ Hesiod, Theogony, 561-584

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