How to Grow Cilantro Plants? When you grow coriander, you get two appetizing herbs for the price of one: the plant itself is coriander (you can think of it as a spice or seed), and the green leaves and stems are considered coriander. The leaves, also known as Chinese parsley, are by far the most versatile part of the plant. Many dressings, soups, dips, side dishes and meat dishes contain this green herb for an immediate taste increase. If you cook recipes that require coriander or just want to keep fresh herbs ready, growing coriander at home is a wise investment, not to mention the delicious one.
How to grow coriander from seeds
Find a container that is at least 20 cm deep or a vacant lot. Prepare the soil by processing compost or organic matter to a depth of at least 30 cm and then raking smoothly. In late spring or autumn (before or after extreme heat), plant 1/4 inch deep coriander seeds and 6 to 8 inch space plants. Water the plants well and often and feed them with nitrogen fertilizer once they are 2 inches high.
Plants will go nuts as the days get longer and temperatures rise. Therefore, make sure they are in a place with full sun or partial shade if you live in a particularly hot climate. If there is a risk of frost, protect your coriander plants with row covers. After about 50 to 55 days, the plant should be at least 6 inches tall and you can start picking the leaves. Pick the leaves individually at harvest or cut 1/3 of the way with kitchen or garden shears so the remaining plant can continue to produce coriander. Coriander is a short-lived herb. Therefore, harvest the leaves once a week to prevent seeds from developing. As soon as seeds develop, they sow themselves, causing small plants to appear in the current or following season.
How to Grow Cilantro Plants
Bonus: If you plant coriander in pots, you can move them indoors when the weather is cool to harvest more fresh herbs (if you set it up correctly, of course).
Follow these tips to make sure you take good care of your coriander plant:
- Timed coordination: Plant coriander in late spring (two weeks after the last frost) or early autumn to avoid hot temperatures. Coriander, which is planted during the summer heat, has a bitter taste and is shorter. Check your USDA plant hardness zone to determine the best time to plant coriander. For example, gardeners in USDA Zones 8, 9, and 10 should opt for fall sowing.
- Soil and irrigation: Coriander grows best in a neutral soil with a pH of 6.2 to 6.8, but is quite tolerant and grows in almost any rich soil. You can determine the pH of your soil by doing a soil test at home. After planting your coriander, make sure that the soil is moist and still well drained.
- Weed: Mulch around the coriander plants as soon as they are visible above the ground to avoid weeds. If in doubt, use a weed killer.
- Pests and diseases: The most common problems for coriander are wilting, wilting, aphids, whitefly and mildew. Fight insects with antibacterial soap and remove dirt or dead leaves to control wilting and mildew.
- Screw connection: If you do not set the time correctly, coriander can shoot before you have a chance to harvest. To avoid screwing, harvest the leaves frequently and keep the plant in the shade and watered. For coriander worth one season every three to four weeks.
Storage and use of harvested coriander
After the screws of your plant, collect all visible coriander seeds and crush them for cooking or baking. If you’d prefer to keep the seeds for further planting, gently crush the coriander seeds to crack the peel and put them in water overnight. Let the seeds dry completely and plant them next season.
However, your cilantro leaves are best fresh and should be used at the end of the cooking process to get the full flavor. Wrap wet paper towels around fresh coriander and store in the fridge to extend shelf life. If you can’t eat all the cilantro before it turns, cut off the individual leaves and put them in a freeze-proof bag before storing them in the freezer. Cut the cilantro for certain measurements and store it in an ice cube tray in the freezer. The rest is up to you: throw it in vinaigrettes, make your own guac, or dress up a simple chicken dish.