Ferula (from Latin ferula, "rod") is a genus of about 170 species of flowering plants in the carrot family, native to the Mediterranean region east to central Asia, mostly growing in arid climates. They are herbaceous perennial plants growing to 1–4 m tall, with stout, hollow, somewhat succulent stems. The leaves are tripinnate or even more finely divided, with a stout basal sheath clasping the stem. The flowers are usually yellow, rarely white, produced in large umbels. Many plants of this genus, especially F. communis are referred to as "giant fennel," although they are not fennel in the strict sense.