Cilantro for all Seasons and Reasons

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Cilantro has a taproot as shown from these that volunteered from a plant I let go to seed last summer. These sprouted last September and provided leaves for Tex/Mex and Asian dishes through the winter. To ensure a fresh year around supply, I’ll need to plant some every month from March through September. Hot weather causes bolting (going to seed) so succession planting and cutting seed heads back are needed to keep leaves coming. It is much easier to grow in cool weather even though we use it in foods that originated in hot places like Mexico and India.

The taproot is a reason cilantro does not transplant well unless it is very young. Having that taproot allows it to reach deep for water and nutrients. The nutrients in the leaves put cilantro in the super food category. Those long roots are also great at improving my clay soil. I am using it as a cover crop in a bed where I set out strawberry transplants last fall. In a few months the strawberries will send runners into the space the cilantro is growing now.

Another benefit of cilantro is the umbell shaped flower heads. Pollinators and predatory insects are attracted by blooming cilantro. And when the seeds come, they are coriander and can be used for flavoring. Even if you are not a fan of the flavor, there may be reason to grow cilantro.

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2 thoughts on “Cilantro for all Seasons and Reasons

  1. Cilantro is so good, but is rather difficult to grow in warm dry areas. Every time I plant it, we get a spell of hot weather and it bolts. I get sad every time.

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