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Cilantro Help

Posted by Nimkel 6 (My Page) on
Thu, May 12, 05 at 15:05

Why won't my cinlatro stay upright. They are healthy plants but they won't stay upright. This happened to my Italien Leaf Parsley as well, but they are standing upright now. Any suggestions? Thanks!


Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: Cilantro Help

How much sun are they getting?


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RE: Cilantro Help

They sit infront of our balcony door, so they should get about 3 hours if not more of sunlight. The parsley did the same thing and now it is standing up. The cilantro are very vibrant green and have big leaves, just kind of lanky. Thanks for your help.


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RE: Cilantro Help

Hi. I am new to the site and also at growing herbs. Ibought potted cilantro and the top is growing lacy looking. Should I take the top off. The tag that came with the plant said full sun, but that is a lot of sun in texas. Please tell me all I need to know about growing and harvesting cilantro


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RE: Cilantro Help

  • Posted by Cain z7 AR (My Page) on
    Fri, May 13, 05 at 15:24

Cilantro is easy to grow, but it goes to seed (bolts) quickly so you must sow seeds often for a continuous supply. I sow seeds about every two weeks. The hotter it is, the faster it bolts.

You mention that it only gets three hours of sunlight - I don't think that's enough. I would suggest 6 to 8 hours.

I have more success growing it in the spring than I do in the hot summer here in Arkansas. Some years I just grow it in the spring and freeze bags of the leaves for later use.

Annie, it sounds like your cilantro plant is bolting if you say it is getting lacy on top. I would suggest letting it fully produce seeds then pick the seeds and resow. The seeds look like little balls - pick them off when they're brown. In the meantime you may want to get a pack of seeds from Wally World and reseed.

You can essentially begin to harvent cilantro leaves as soon as they appear.


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RE: Cilantro Help

That 3 hours of sun is what's doing it. Cilantro really needs full sun - meaning at least 6 hours of full sun. It will survive on less, but won't be as full or vibrant (or upright).

Parsley can take less sun & can frequently be grown in partial shade, but again it won't produce as heavily for you as it would if it had more sunlight.


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RE: Cilantro Help

After it bolts is it inedible?


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RE: Cilantro Help

No - it's definitely not inedible. I've still used the bolted fernier foliage in dishes. It's just not quite as good.

If you don't have a garden area that gets more sun, just try sowing some seed in pots in a sunny area. Works really well. I try to sow some Cilantro every 2-3 weeks during the growing season to keep a crop going. I also allow some to go to seed & harvest, dry, & use them as well. Cilantro seed is commonly called Coriander, & when mature & dry can be harvested & ground for spice use.


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RE: Cilantro Help

After Cilantro is fully blooming, there won't be many leaves left that are the larger ones you want. Those lacy ones aren't very desirable. Fall and winter are good for growing Cilantro here in Texas, but I don't know about colder parts of the country.


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RE: Cilantro Help

OK, so if my cilantro begins to bloom and becomes "lacey" at the top, has it run it's course and should I reseed?


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RE: Cilantro Help

Yes, it's run its course for foliage use, but you can leave some of the flowers to set seed which, once mature & dry, you can easily store, dry, & grind for use in recipes. The seeds are what you commonly buy in the market as "Coriander". "Coriander" & "Cilantro" are the same plant - one name is used for the seed; one for the foliage. Once the seed is mature I usually freeze it for a short spell to kill any bugs that might be present - then I just store it in a jar with my other spices.

I usually sow Cilantro every few weeks so that I always have a fresh supply coming on.


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'Slo-Bolt'

There's a new variety of Cilantro called "Slo-Bolt" that I'm going to try this season but haven't planted yet.

Supposedly it is supposed to be more heat-resistant & slower to bolt & go to seed.


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RE: Cilantro Help

There are some "slow bolting" varieties that have worked out for me in Mass and Maine. Not sure how they'd work in hot areas. 3 hrs not enough for sturdy stems.

Yep. grind those corriander seeds up and smell them, makes you want to do some cookin.


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RE: Cilantro Help

  • Posted by per27 USDA 10 Los Ang (My Page) on
    Wed, May 25, 05 at 20:15

Everyone so far has sort of bemoaned the "bolting" or flowering of Cilantro (Coriander, Chinese Parsley). Personally, I find the small white flower clusters and the somewhat lacy gray-green leaves rather pretty - especially en masse, as mine are now: about ten plants all in bloom at once.

As for the resulting coriander seeds, I find I need not re-sow: they tend to do it themselves. But, of course, for a continuous supply, frequent plantings are necessary.

And I find the "lacy" leaves have the same aroma and flavor, but having less "mass", require more for the same level of flavor in recipes.

In my garden here in a very moderate climate in So. Cal, the cilantro gets roughly 4 hours of direct sunlight, and does qite well. It's been growing in the same spot for several years now - reseeding itself. (Being readily available in stores here, I need not replant.


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RE: Cilantro Help

Exactly what do you mean by bolting?


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RE: Cilantro Help

Bolting is when a plant - be it Cilantro, Parsley, Lettuce, whatever - suddenly sends up a flower stalk & sets seed. Once the plant has done this, quality leaf production effectively comes to an abrupt end as the plant has accomplished what it was supposed to do.


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RE: Cilantro Help

As an aside, certain cultures, Thai in particular, use the roots of cilantro as an ingredient as well. This is the first year I've grown my own, so I don't really know what the flavor is like.

Anyone out there know?


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RE: Cilantro Help

Can we keep cutting the top off, so the bottom leaves keep producing? Thanks.


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RE: Cilantro Help

catherine,

after reading all the wonderful posts about cilantro - i was going to ask the same question you did - good question! when you deadhead flowers, you get more flowers - does this work with cilantro? i was wondering the same about dill and herbs in general. should you cut it back before it goes to seed to get more dill. does the dill start to diminish after it flowers?

vickey


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RE: Cilantro Help

I'm bumping this up, since it went to the second page, and there are questions. Thanks!


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RE: Cilantro Help

I also would like to know:

good question! when you deadhead flowers, you get more flowers - does this work with cilantro? i was wondering the same about dill and herbs in general. should you cut it back before it goes to seed to get more dill. does the dill start to diminish after it flowers?


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RE: Cilantro Help

Unfortunately, deadheading doesn't work with Cilantro because once it bolts, the foliage it produces is thin & ferny - like dill - & the flavor is quite diminished. Cutting off the flowers just produces more of this highly inferior foliage. It's not worth it.

And since Cilantro grows so quickly from seed, you're much better off just sowing more. I usually sow every 2-3 weeks during the summer to ensure a constant good supply.


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Cutting the flowers off does not work, but will cutting the leaves off help? I mean, we eat cilantro almost daily...so I am constantly trimming off leaves. Will this slow down the bolting?

Thanks!


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Won't help once the plant decides to flower. Again - sow new seed every couple of weeks. That's really the only way to ensure a steady supply of quality Cilantro.


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Thanks.

Think I will start harvesting it now and freezing it. I've got 5 plants going right now. Some look like they may be getting ready to bolt. Some are just starting out.


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RE: Cilantro Help

Someone mentioned freezing cilantro -- what does that involve? Just putting the dried leaves in a bag?? Any complications? How long is it good for? Is the taste the same or similar?

Thanks!


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RE: Cilantro Help

I just got a cilantro plant (already started growing) and have transferred it to a pot which I plan on keeping it and any other resulting plants in as they grow during the year. Since I've transplanted it, the stalks have wilted down quite a bit. I know with other plants I've had, like sage, if I cut them back at the stem, they grow back stronger and better. Will this work for cilantro too? Also, I'll try exposing it to more sun in the meantime to increase the stalk strength.
Thanks


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RE: Cilantro Help

  • Posted by gshann Z6 PA ChesCo. (My Page) on
    Wed, Jun 14, 06 at 16:19

So when harvesting cilantro, it sounds like about 40 days from planting? When harvesting, do we snip it or rip it? If we snip it, does the plant grow back, or is it game over? I'm thinking of starting a salsa garden, and my wife and I both love cilantro. Also, how much should I expect to get out of a single seed packet? Thanks!!


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RE: Cilantro Help

Just thought I'd mention....after mine bolted and was transplanted into the ground from a container where it was restricted, I had problems with slugs. Watch out for those little buggers.

An open container (can or small bowl) of stale beer buried at ground level will attract them and they will drown. They're attracted to the yeast smell, or something like that.


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RE: Cilantro Help

Cilantro stems have a flavor similar to the leaves and can be used. Good for stews.


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I am new at gardening, I just kind of got swept away in it a few months ago. This is probably a stupid question but, I was wondering if I could start growing cilantro any time of the year if they are inside? my apartment is always 72 degrees and the four cilantro plants I have now are doing well and starting to bolt.


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RE: Cilantro Help

Cain, i am also from Arkansas, and have just begun growing herbs for my mother. She wanted fresh herbs, so I took charge of trying to get her some fresh herbs.
She was really interested in cilantro. I have planted Sweet Basil, Oregano, Cilantro, Parsley,Garlic Chives, and onion for her.
AR_Dramaqueen


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RE: Cilantro Help

I just got a small cilantro pot a few days ago and some of the leaves have dried up. The plant has also slumped over, it is not upright. I thought the plant was wilting so I watered it frequently, but it still doesn't look very healthy.

Does anyone know what is wrong with my plant? What should I do?


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RE: Cilantro Help

It needs sun, and doesn't like a lot of heat. If the primary leaves have died out, they will not return. Once they do die out, the plant will start to send up a thinner group of leaves, more like a fern. Then stalks of tiny flower clusters, which turn ito coriander seeds (actually fruits). Once it starts to bolt, it will not grow back to form new flat leaves again. Pick the flat leaves that you can see, that are still green. Avoid overwatering.


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RE: Cilantro Help

To freeze cilantro, parsley, basil etc:

Harvest the leaves/branches, wash with cool water. Remove any undesirable parts (stems, brown or discolored leaves, etc) and spin the leaves dry in a salad spinner. Put into a ziplock freezer bag and burp all of the air out.

I've found it works well to squish it all fairly flat when filling the bag for freezing. That way its easy to open the bag, break off a tablespoon or so, and then zip it shut again.


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RE: Cilantro Help

If you are growing it for leaves you need to sow directly outdoors in partial shade. However if you are growing it for seeds only you need to plant it in full sun.
It dislikes excess moisture or humidity. Coriander roots are tall and it is difficult to transplant. Hence does best if sowed in its final place.You can try growing it indoors in peat pots 4-6 weeks before planting outdoors.
Seeds need darkness to germinate.Each seedball has 2 seeds. Thus,to prevent overcrowding lightly crush it with a rolling pin before soaking and planting.
Hope it helps ! :)
Neerukat


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RE: Cilantro Help

I much perefer not to use 'peat pots'. They simply don't break down well enough, and fast enough. I used to start some seeds in them, but when I pulled up the plants in late fall, the still had most of the peat pot holding on many roots. Cow Pots are new and work well, as to regular plastic pots. Because I start many items from seed, I bought a 1000 pots that will last me for quite some time as many are reusable. The size I prefer are square 2x2x3-4 inches deep. I also use seed starting mixes that are sterile and contain no disease, bugs, or weed seeds. In all the years of planting this way, rarely have I lost any plants after being transplanted outside.


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Paper pots also work fine. Cilantro also likes its roots cool to prevent from bolting. Mulching works.Does not like hot afternoon sun. JUst morning sun is enough.


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A couple of people have asked the same question that I have but the suggestions don't seem to work. I planted cilantro seeds about 4 weeks ago and the plants are 4 inches tall with small leaves but the stem looks very frail and the plants seems unable to stand. I have been watering them very carefully and moving the pot around to allow for sun during the morning and late afternoon but kept it in the shade during the heat in the afternoon but it has not helped. The leaves are also very small. Any suggestions?


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It sounds like they are not getting enough sun and heat.

But you can pour a fistfull of fine soil around each to hold them up untill they grow stronger roots.
True that cilantro is a cool crop but in order to get established they need sun and heat.

Don't worry about getting too much heat at this stage. Let them grow more first.Then provide then cooler spot with less sun.


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Cilantro is a cool loving plant and will bolt in hot weather. As for freezing it depends on how long you Want to keep the leaves. If you are just going to use it in a few months I just place it into a baggy and freeze. If you want to save it longer it needs to be vaccum sealed or it will get freezer burn (the mosture will come out of the leaves and they will dry out and lose a lot of flavor as well as take on flavors you just won't like.


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RE: Cilantro Help

A few very simple, very important things to remember when growing Cilantro. They love being grown in bunches. They do not like a lot of heat, but love a lot of sun.


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RE: Cilantro Help

Ok, not sure if anyone still reads/checks this forum? I have found the information very helpful. I do have a question? My cilantro is in a large pot and is nicely forming the coriander seeds. They are still green. There is also very little of the fern type leaves still on the plant. I see that the general opinion is that the seeds need to dry out turn tan/brown before harvesting. this might be silly, but do I continue to water the plant or just let it dry out?


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if the seeds are fully formed i'd cease with the water...


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I'd continue watering. You don't want to kill the plant; you want to let the seeds dry naturally on the living plant, then harvest the seeds. The plant itself will die at some point, but don't kill it by under- (or over-) watering.


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RE: Cilantro Help

This subject may have been beat to death by now, but I'll throw in my 2 cents. Remember that cilantro is an annual, not a perennial like sage; it grows for one cycle, sets seeds and the plant dies. As others have pointed out, the best way to ensure a continuous supply of cilantro during hot weather is to keep planting seeds, and the plants do best if sown and not transplanted. However, germinating seeds in soil temps above 80F is difficult. Mulching and sowing seeds in a garden spot that is shaded in late afternoon by other plants can help. Also, root temperatures above 75F triggers bolting, so plants growing in a pot are likely to bolt sooner. Here in zone 7, we let our cilantro go to seed each spring and reap a double bonus: the white flowers attract beneficial insects and the resulting seeds sprout again in the fall...everywhere! Sometimes we have plants overwinter and we can even scrounge a few leaves for winter cooking.


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