coriander = cilantro?

Aiku(z7 NY)June 23, 2003

Does anyone know if food-grade coriander will grow nicely into cilantro? .. or if different species are cultivated for seed and others for cilantro production?

Thanks! Aiku

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Chances are it will. There's no way to know for sure unless you can track down exactly where it came from and they could tell you specifically what variety it is. Keep in mind that it probably is quick to bolt if grown for corriander seeds. If you're wanting cilantro, you're better off going with a slow bolting variety.

    Bookmark   June 23, 2003 at 2:24PM
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Aiku(z7 NY)

Thanks Violet!

Uh, what does "quick to bolt" mean?

-- Aiku

    Bookmark   June 23, 2003 at 10:42PM
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Helen_vancouver(z8 BC)

Hi Aiku,

'Uh, what does "quick to bolt" mean?'
It means it'll flower and set seeds early. And you wouldn't want that if you want leaves.

    Bookmark   June 24, 2003 at 12:14AM
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Hi Aiku,

Yes, Helen is correct. When a plant "bolts" it is producing flowers and seeds prematurely, before it develops its crop. Many "cold" (spring/cooler weather) crops are subject to bolting. This can be caused by early planting, rapid temperature changes, hot temperatures, cool temperatures, and over fertilization with hot manures.

For a plant cultivated for its leaves, like basil, bolting is an unwanted action. Such plants like cilantro are often bred into "slow bolting" cultivars.

Think of the change in leaves much like the change in leaves on trees in the fall. They get tough. A plant's only mission in life, just like all life is to perpetuate the species. For cilantro, that is producing seed. Once it starts to do that, the life of the plant becomes much shorter. So, the longer you can prevent it by planting a slow bolting variety or constantly picking off the stems (especially the central, seed producing stem) then the longer it will produce leaves for you to harvest. (This is why it is good to harvest herbs regularly.)


    Bookmark   June 25, 2003 at 9:56AM
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Aiku(z7 NY)

would you believe ~ tee hee ~ all this time I incorrectly imagined that bolting meant that when plants didn't get enough light, they grew really fast (hence the term "bolt") to get closer to the sun, and as a consequence, developed really long and skinny necks. I wonder how many other things I think I know and turn out I don't!

Thank you Helen and Violet!

    Bookmark   June 27, 2003 at 10:44PM
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coriander and cilantro and Chinese parsley are all the same. the distinction is between coriander seed and green/fresh coriander. With a perfectly adequate common name for this plant, why do we need to call it anything else. Cilantro displaced Chinese parsley. What's next? Why not kothmir or kothamalli based on statistical number of users? I realise that this isn't an answer to your query, but a mini-rant.

    Bookmark   June 11, 2004 at 2:02PM
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In some countries, coriander and cilantro both refer to the plant, not the seed. In the USA, coriander refers to the seed as a spice, and cilantro refers to the plant as an herb, very few Americans will ever call it Chinese parsley.

Perhaps with communications such as the internet which is bringing people in the world closer together, it will be more possible to come to universal agreements, but in the botanical world, that is what the Latin/Scientific/Botanical name is for.

Check out the FAQ for this forum for more regarding this issue.

As with most of the vegetables discussed here, many of the same plants have multiple common names. These names differ not only due to different countries and thier Languages, but also from different regions and communities within a country.

Humans have a tendency to call something by a name with which they grew up with as a child. This will likely not change anytime soon, just makes the world more interesting...


    Bookmark   June 11, 2004 at 4:19PM
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Then Corriander will be referred as Dhana or Dhania ( seeds)and Cilantro as Kothmir ( equivalent terms ) in Indian subcontinent.
It will be interesting to how these terms are known in different parts of the world.


    Bookmark   June 11, 2004 at 8:03PM
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Chiman... here you go! This is by no means a complete list...

; )
Albanian Koriandër e kultivuar
Amharic Dimbilal
Arabic Kuzbara, Kazbarah
Armenian Kinj
Bengali Dhoney
Bulgarian Koriandur
Burmese Nan nan zee (fruits), Nan nan bin (herb), Naunau
Catalan Celià ndria, Coriandre
Chinese Yan Shi, Fan Yan Sui, Yuen sai, Wan-Swee, heong choy(herb), Hu sui (fruits)
Croatian Korijandar
Czech Koriandr
Danish Coriander
Dutch Ketoembar, Koriander
English Coriander, Chinese parsley, Indian parsley (herb)
Esperanto Koriandro
Estonian Aedkoriander, Koriander
Farsi Geshniz
Finnish Korianteri
French Coriandre, Punaise mâle, Persil arabe
Gaelic Coireiman, Lus a choire
Georgian Khinji
German Koriander, Wanzenkümmel, Chinesische Petersilie, Indische Petersilie (herb)
Greek ?????????, ?????????, ?????????
 Koliandro, Koriantro, Koriandro
Gujrati Dhane, Dhana (fruits), Kothmir (herb)
Hebrew Gad, Kusbara
Hindi Dhania , dhanya(fruits), Hara dhania (herb)
Hungarian Koriander, Cigánypetrezselyem, Beléndf?, Zergef?
Icelandic Kóríander
Indonesian Ketumbar (fruits), Daun ketumbar (herb)
Italian Coriandolo
Japanese Koyendoro, Koendoro (herb)
Latvian Kinzas, Koriandrs
Laotian hong pomn
Lithuanian Kalendra
Kannada Havija, Kambari
Khmer Vannsui, Chi van-suy
Laotian Phak hom pom, phak hom pam (herb)
Malay Ketumbar (fruits), Daun ketumbar, Wansui (herb), Penjilang
Malayalam Kottamalli
Marathi Dhanya, Dhane (fruits), Kothimbir (herb)
Norwegian Koriander
Pahlawi Gishniiz
Pashto Gashneez
Polish Kolendra siewna
Portuguese Coentro
Romanian Coriandru
Russian Kinza, Kishnets (herb); Koriandr (fruits)
Sanskrit Dhaniyaka, Kustumburi
Singhalese Kotthamallie
Slovak Koriander
Slovenian Koriander
Spanish Coriandro, Cilantro, Cilandrio, Culantro
Swahili Giligilani
Swedish Koriander
Tagalog Kulantro, Unsuey, Wansuey, Uan-soi (herb)
Tamil Kothamalli
Telugu Dhaniyalu, Kotimiri
Thai Pak chi met, Phak hom, Phak Cheethai (herb), Mellet pak chi (fruits)
Tibetan Sona pentsom, So na pad tshom
Turkish Ki?ni?, Ki?nic
Ukrainian Koriandr posyvnyj
Urdu Dhania
Vietnamese Mui, Ngo, Ngo ta, Ngò Rí(herb)

For more on the etymology of the word, see these websites:

Spice Dictionary (Scroll Down to Etymology)


    Bookmark   June 12, 2004 at 12:21AM
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Sometimes you intentionally don't want a plant to receive light. This is called blanching... as in blanched garlic chives often called "golden needles" which are more expensive than regular garlic chives at the produce stand.

Also blanched asparagus (white asparagus) at the store. It's not green because the plant wasn't allowed to photosynthesize.

    Bookmark   July 7, 2005 at 3:47PM
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I'm reading this thread with great interest, as I recently moved to the East coast from San Diego. Cilantro is a very prevalant herb in most Baja Mexican dishes, and I love it's distinct flavor. Since we're now in an area where I can actually grow a garden, I wanted to plant some cilantro. My sister came back from the nursery with coriander. I could tell by looking at it that it wasn't what I was used to cooking with, the leaves are very narrow, almost like rosemary leaves. Later, I bought a cilantro plant, with nice, broad leaves, like I'm used to. I planted it right next to the coriander. Now they're the same height, and the cilantro leaves which are higher on the plant, look very similar to the coriander, but those which are lower, look like the cilantro I bought from the store. They taste the same. If it's in fact the same plant, I wonder why the different appearance? Understand, I'm very new to gardening, so there is a LOT I have to learn. So far though, I'm very, very pleased with my vegetables.

    Bookmark   June 16, 2006 at 2:47PM
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It's a bit difficult without pics. Can you post some?

There are many varieties of cilantro (the plant). There are also many plants that taste like cilantro which grow much better in warmer climates.

It might be easier for everyone reading the thread to keep any "plants" to be called "cilantro" and any "seeds" to be called "coriander". It's simply too confusing otherwise.

    Bookmark   June 16, 2006 at 2:59PM
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I can post some pics, unfortunately, it will have to wait about a week. I'm back to San Diego for a week, on business. (I have a terrific neighbor who agreed to watering my herbs, veggies, and potted plants.) So when I get back, I'll post some pics. (presuming I can figure out how to do it!)



    Bookmark   June 19, 2006 at 12:59AM
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joycrick(zone9 FLA)

For those of you who use lots of cilantro and live in hot climates, culantro makes a great substitute. It tastes and smells like cilantro, but looks very different. It tolerates extreme heat really well - it even survives Florida summers - and very few herbs can do that.

I think i still have some seeds if anyone wants some. E-mail me.


    Bookmark   August 4, 2006 at 3:42PM
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Aha! Now I know ... Cilantro is Chinese parsley.
We used to just call it Parsley or Hiong Choy (Cantonese) or Pang Chye (Hokien) in Singapore, then I see it in Publix & Walmart (FL) labelled Cilantro. I've been chewing on Cilantro & 'US Parsley' wondering if I'm all confused with taste, smell, names of herbs, etc - and suddenly reading this post I realise I'm Ok afterall. Thanks.

    Bookmark   August 6, 2006 at 12:31PM
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