Coriander: An Herb with Many Names
Coriander is often referred as an herb with many names. Why so? It’s because people are often getting confused over cilantro, Chinese parsley and coriander. So what is the difference?
They are all actually the same plant! Coriander pertains to the seeds and the cilantro, or Chinese parsley, pertains to the leaves. It’s just that some call them both names or they interchange them. This confusion is partially due to several dishes that contain both ingredients.
Coriander and cilantro come from the Mediterranean centuries ago. Chinese dishes and dishes in Latin America, mainly Mexico, have coriander as a significant ingredient. Coriander and cilantro can be must-haves for those who like the taste. Adding a bit of coriander to your sandwich will take it to the next level.
Due to its dual uses, growing coriander to harvest both the seeds and the cilantro leaves can be a great use of your garden. Read on for our guide on how to grow coriander yourself.
Coriander is a fast-growing plant. From bolting to seeding and finally to harvesting, you would wonder where time has gone. Listed below are the tips on how to grow healthy coriander.
- Transplanting coriander is a bad idea so pick the place to plant it from the start. As what have said, it grows quickly. In less than 10 days, you will notice that it has already bolted. In 4-6 weeks, expect Coriander to develop from sowing. Coriander can grow in your garden outside or in a pot indoors.
- A shallow soil will be a good spot to sow the seed. The soil should be moist and well-drained. A loose soil will do wonders for your coriander’s development. Do not overwater your coriander plants.
- The spring and autumn are the coriander’s favorite seasons. It loves the cool weather but hates the frost. When growing coriander, be wary of the frozen ground as it will die on the frosted soil. Most people grow Coriander once the last snow melts.
- Coriander loves the sun. Place it on an area where the sun shines through, although a nice shade is also good if placed in a very hot spot.
- Expect coriander to be as tall as 2 to 3 feet high. The plants should be sown at least 5cm apart if you are growing them for the leaves. If you are growing them for the seeds, allot at least 20 to 24 cm of space.
- If you are after coriander’s lush the leaves, consider taking out the flower. Only keep the flower if you need the seed.
- Coriander is self-planting and can spread out easily, so keep an eye on stray seeds.
So how to harvest the seeds? A good method is by cutting the whole stalk and storing it in a container. Return to it in a couple of weeks. Shake your container after the seed dries, some even bash the containers. After some time, the stalk will fall off by itself. Finally, be wary of different insects like flies and bees, even birds will also visit at times as these pollinators are attracted to coriander. It is best to place the plant near pollinated plants. Taller plants can also act as support.
May it be sauces, soups or sandwiches, coriander is a great addition to any dish. It can be hard to grow at times but it can give you the best tasting dishes in return.