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What we love about planting heirloom cilantro
- Thrives in bright, sunny areas
- Great for succession planting offering a continual harvest
- Harvest the entire plant for versatile uses
- Wonderful flavor, known as a kitchen garden staple
The Best Heirloom Cilantro for your garden
Heirloom cilantro, often known as Chinese parsley, is a resilient cool-season annual crop. This fragrant herb has a citrus and spice flavor that brightens Mexican, Chinese, Southeast Asian, and Indian dishes. Although the leaves of the fresh heirloom cilantro plant are normally the most popular, the pungent seeds (also known as coriander) and tangy roots promise a delightful treat.
Learn to plant heirloom cilantro
Heirloom cilantro seeds are actually two seeds enclosed in a stiff husk. After crushing the husks, soak the seeds for 24 to 48 hours. Remove the seeds from the water and set them aside to dry.
As soon as the threat of frost has passed, direct sow heirloom cilantro seeds in the early spring. Heirloom cilantro can also be planted in the fall and spring in warmer climates. If a continuous crop is desired, seeds can be sown every two to three weeks. Heirloom cilantro seeds enjoy a cold, sunny environment, but the plants will bolt if the soil temperature reaches 75°F. Choose a light, well-draining soil for your garden. Cover seeds with 1/4 inch of soil and sow them in rows approximately 12 inches apart.
How to harvest delicious heirloom cilantro
Thin out seedlings to a spacing of three to four inches apart once they reach around two inches in height. In around seven to ten days, the seeds will germinate. You can harvest your leaves at any time, but the fresher leaves should be removed first, followed by the older, more mature leaves. Heirloom cilantro, unlike most herbs, can be eaten fresh and does not require drying for storage or future use.
The leaves will lose their flavor once the plant bolts (producing a stalk on which flowers will develop), so pinch back periodically to keep blooms at bay. During a hot spell, growing plants in partial shade can help prevent bolting.
Health advantages of heirloom cilantro
Heirloom cilantro has a long list of health advantages. It has anti-inflammatory and antibacterial qualities thanks to a variety of phytonutrients and antioxidants.
For more information about planting, growing, and caring for heirloom cilantro / coriander seed, see the Cilantro Seeds Planting Guide.