How to Grow Fennel In Paperpots (Paper Chain Pots)

Growing Fennel in Paperpots


Better germination!

No hand transplanting!

Less transplant shock!


Fennel is a perfect crop to grow in paper chain pots. Starting the seeds in the nursery, versus the field, gives you great germination rates; and the fennel seedlings transplant easily with the Paperpot Transplanter.

Fennel is a crop that most market gardeners wouldn’t think of as a paperpot crop, but it’s one that works really well in the Paperpot system. 

The Paperpot Transplanter can transplant seedlings quickly and easily into the field 28 days after starting the seeds.

All without bending over and less transplant shock!

The fennel bulbs will size up perfectly – the paper chain doesn’t affect bulb formation.

The Specifications for Paperpot Fennels


PAPER CHAIN POT6"
ROWS PER 100’ X 30” BED4
TRAYS PER 100’ X 30” BED 3
KWIK KLIK™ TOP PLATE Plate: Paperpot (264 holes) / Thickness: 3mm / Hole Diameter: 5mm
SEEDS PER CELL 1
SEED PER 100’ X 30’ BED760 seeds (+/-) *Always round up when placing seed orders to ensure having enough
RECOMMENDED CULTIVARSOrazio, Preludio
GERMINATION 72 hours at 78°F
DAYS TO TRANSPLANT 28 days (+/-) *time from seeding to transplanting in the field
DAYS TO MATURITY 60 days (+/-) *time from seeding to being ready for harvest
HARVEST WINDOW14 days (+/-) *time crop is at ideal stage for harvest after reaching maturity
TOTAL DAYS IN FIELD 46 days (+/-) *DTM + harvest window - days to transplant
HARVEST UNIT Bulb (3-5" in diameter)
TARGET CROP YIELD 760 bulbs (+/-)
PRICE PER UNIT $1.5 *depending on local market pricing
REVENUE PER BED $1140 *depending on local market pricing
SEEDINGKwik Klik™ Drop Seeder, Paperpot Germination Trays, Paper Chain Pots
TRANSPLANTINGPaperpot Transplanter
TILTHINGPower Harrow or Precision Depth Roller (With no tractor: Tither)
AERATIONMeadow Creature Broadfork
SHAPINGBed Preparation Rake
WEED CONTROLFlame Weeder
CULTIVATIONWheel Hoe w/ Bio-Disc Cultivator or Flex Tine Weeder
tools-paperpot

Suggested Tools for Paperpot Fennels


Bed Preparation for Paperpot Transplanting


Recommended Cultivars:

  • Space
  • Red Kitten
  • Gazelle

Days to Maturity:

  • 55 days (+/-)

Target Crop Yield:

  • 60 lb (+/-) per 100’ bed (average 3 cuttings per bed, 20 lb per cutting)


Tools Needed:

  • JP5 or JP1 (JP5 recommended)
  • Tilther or Power Harrow
  • Bed prep rake
  • Flame weeder
  • Row cover or insect netting (depending on the season)
  • Flex tine weeder
  • Quick Cut Greens Harvester (or harvest knife if preferred)

Seeding Fennels in Paperpots


Prepare trays with 6” paper chain pots, and fill with potting mix. 

Install Paperpot bottom plate and specified top plate into Kwik Klik™ (KK) Drop Seeder. Pour seed onto the top plate and rotate until one seed fills each hole. 

Position the KK Drop Seeder over the tray, ensuring the holes are lined up with the cells, and click to drop the seeds. 

Water the trays, then place in germination chamber for 72 hours at 78°. 

Transfer the trays to greenhouse tables after germination. 

Thoroughly water trays before heading to the field for transplanting.

Using the Paperpot Transplanter, plant the four rows of fennel.

There should be 6” between rows with 3” from the outer rows to the edge of the bed. 

Reference https://paperpot.co/learn/ for instructional videos if needed.

paperpot transplanter

Transplanting Fennels with the Paperpot Transplanter


Irrigation


Water the beds thoroughly with overhead irrigation or four rows of drip.

Frequent shallow waterings will support rapid growth.

10-14 days after transplanting, cultivate using a Terrateck Wheel Hoe with the bio-disc cultivator attachment.

A weekly pass with the flex tine weeder is also an effective tool for preventing weeds.

Cultivation (Weeding)


Harvesting Fennel


Fennel is ready for harvest when the bulbs are 3-5”.

Fennel is harvested while straddling the 30” bed and cutting at the base with a harvest knife.

Discard any fennel that has blemished or softs spots.

Spray all sides of the bulbs one at a time with the high pressure Washdown Gun.

Transfer the washed bulbs to totes, and store at 35° until taken to market.

Washing and Packing Fennel



Overall Paper Chain Pots make fennel a much more farmer-friendly crop.


Time savings, ease of transplanting, and high germination rates are some of the reasons why fennel is one of the most popular market garden crops grown in paperpots.

Get started growing fennel on your farm using a Paperpot Transplanter and download the Growers Notes below.

INTERESTED IN PURCHASING A PAPERPOT TRANSPLANTER?


If you have any questions, please reach out hello@paperpot.co or 877.850.1555.