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    You are in: Home / Community Forums / Gardening, Herbs, Spices and More / Help! Save the life of a poor defensless cilantro plant!
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    Help! Save the life of a poor defensless cilantro plant!

    HeatherFeather
    Wed Jul 10, 2002 2:19 pm
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    I have a window full of fresh herbs growing quite nicely in my kitchen. My basil, lemon balm, and chives are all growing nicely. However, my poor pitiful looking cilantro is dying! I have no idea how to make ciantro grow properly - does it need sun or shade, how much water should I feed it, etc. At first i watered it very lightly, touching the dirt to feel for dampnes as I do all my other houseplants. I have tried using less water and even skipped a watering day. I have tried trimming some of the leaves, but no luck. The leaves are yellowing and it looks like it needs a trip to the garden ER. Help!
    riffraff
    Wed Jul 10, 2002 3:28 pm
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    Sorry, I can't help. I have never been able to grow it.
    Dib's
    Wed Jul 10, 2002 10:54 pm
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    Eat it! OK, did it flower? I find Cilantro likes dry conditions-at least thats what works for me. Or you can Eat it! Gee, am I repeating myself? Di icon_wink.gif
    Sue Lau
    Wed Jul 10, 2002 11:21 pm
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    Give it to me, I'll eat it if you won't! icon_wink.gif

    *chomp*

    Cilantro doesn't last as long as other herbs; they grow, you eat them, then they're gone.
    HeatherFeather
    Thu Jul 11, 2002 3:53 am
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    Oh fiddle faddle! I wouldn't have paid more to buy a plant then. Lesson learned. There has got to be a way to keep a stash growing - cilantro is not a popular herb here in Germany, so it is not always available.
    dale!
    Thu Jul 11, 2002 4:13 am
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    My cilantro is growing like a weed and self seeding everywhere. I grow it in a combination herb/vegetable/fruit tree garden.
    It is growing happily beneath the lemon tree, a huge clump of multiple self seeded plants.
    It's in average/good soil, part sun/part shade. Gets watered when I think of it but otherwise doesn't mind getting a bit dry.
    Try putting it out in a garden bed if you have any as I find some herbs never do as well in pots.
    HeatherFeather
    Thu Jul 11, 2002 4:19 am
    Food.com Groupie
    I will have to get a larger pot and will try keeping it out on my balcony. I do not have a yard, so I can't plant it for real. Although, we get tons and tons of rain here, so I may have to drag my planter inside when it rains. Thanks for the tips!
    Chrissyo
    Thu Jul 11, 2002 5:20 am
    Food.com Groupie
    Thanks for the question Heather.

    Dale, does Cilantro seed quickly? I was thinking that my cilantro may be getting to much water. The leaves around the base are a bit yellowish. The same goes for my curly parsley.
    dale!
    Thu Jul 11, 2002 8:36 am
    Food.com Groupie
    Quote:

    Dale, does Cilantro seed quickly? I was thinking that my cilantro may be getting to much water. The leaves around the base are a bit yellowish. The same goes for my curly parsley.


    I don't think they like too much water from personal experience. Let it get a bit dry. If it wilts water it. You know how dry it's been Chrissy? Well I've only watered mine once this whole time and it's growing like crazy. If it was summer, that would be different, I'd water every couple of days in summer but not now.

    There is the slow-bolting type and the faster bolting type. Usually they aren't labeled as too what type they are but if your label said "good for seed", it's probably the faster bolting type. Mine is.
    At the moment I have a patch of it growing about 60cmx60cm. It's all self seeded from one plant that I had that went to seed and this is about the fourth generation.
    I love it, thank goodness!
    If it shoots up a flower spike, just leave it and you'll get lots of babies, trust me!

    Could the yellow leaves just be old leaves that are dieing off naturally?

    I had an Italian parsley last year that went to seed. I just left it go and when the flower stalk dried off I shook it around in the garden. Now I have baby parsleys coming up all over! Yay!!

    Herbs really do much better in the garden than in pots, so do put them in the garden if you can.

    Actually the same thing has happened with my basil, baby basils everywhere. At this rate I will have to start pulling them out!
    Chrissyo
    Thu Jul 11, 2002 8:52 am
    Food.com Groupie
    Thank you very much Dale. I will do that.

    I think the cilantro is getting too much water. They get watered twice per week on a watering system.
    The curly parsley must be the older leaves because the rest looks great.
    Dib's
    Thu Jul 11, 2002 9:02 am
    Food.com Groupie
    Hey there Guys-I buy around 3 packs of seeds. I start with 10 or so in the middle of the pot. 1 week after the sprouts pop up, I plant a ring around those. 1 week after those pop up......Cilantro is a basic food group for this family.
    Low water works well once established. You can kick them in the roots with a splash of plant food also. Di icon_wink.gif
    HeatherFeather
    Thu Jul 11, 2002 4:14 pm
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    This is great stuff, everyone. Thank you so much. I think I watered them too much - mine is completely yellow now. Now that I am armed with knowledge, maybe my next plant will survive! icon_smile.gif Thankx!
    Dib's
    Thu Jul 11, 2002 6:17 pm
    Food.com Groupie
    Better be "plant's" if you want to use it! Di
    MarissaBoBissa
    Fri Apr 19, 2013 10:03 pm
    Newbie "Fry Cook" Poster
    Cilantro is tricky to grow but it can be done! Here's a few things to know when you get started:

    1) I think it is always easier to start growth from a small plant than seeds. See if you can buy a healthy, small, green plant. If you’re using seeds, plant them in about 6-8cm of soil. (See step #3 for the type of soil I recommend.)

    2) Cilantro roots need a lot of room to grow downward. If you're planting it indoors like I do, choose a pot that it at least 28cm deep. Clay pots work best because they allow for the water to drain better than plastic or other material pots.

    3) Obtain some potting soil (I like to use a mixture of organic miracle grow and moisture maintenance miracle grow potting mix). If you can't find those types, try to mix any sterile potting soil with some sand. Sand, like the moisture maintenance potting mix, will help to allow the sand to drain properly. Also, make sure that you have adequate drain holes in the bottom of your pot so that the water can flow freely.

    4) Cilantro needs plenty of sunlight, so if you're growing it indoors place it in a sunny window. Try to give it at least 5-6 hours of bright sunlight a day. You can use grow lights in the winter months or if you don't get a lot of sun, but you should allow the cilantro to be under the grow lights for a longer period of time; about 12-14 hours under a grow light is similar to the amount of direct sunlight that the plant needs. Cilantro will grow in the direction of the light source, so make sure that you rotate your pot regularly if you are growing it indoors.

    5) Cilantro is a plant that will bolt easily. "Bolting" in gardening terms refers to a plant growing extremely fast when temperatures climb. Some plants naturally bolt when it gets hotter as a way to survive. The growth rate increases so to produce seeds faster, but that is bad if you're growing the herb to eat. Once cilantro starts to bolt, the taste of the stalks/leaves changes and the plant becomes more fibrous and quickly flowers and produces seeds. You can keep a cilantro plant from bolting longer by regularly trimming it evenly.

    6) When watering your cilantro, make sure to water THOROUGHLY rather than frequently. Cilantro should be watered until you see the water drip through your draining holes in the bottom of your pot so that the soil is thoroughly saturated, but you should wait to water again until the soil is dry to the touch so that you aren't over watering it.

    7) Unfortunately, cilantro usually is only an annual herb. So if you plant it in late spring, it will be good if you can get it to last until fall harvest time. The good news is that when you let cilantro bolt, it will definitely produce many seeds. You can collect the seeds and use them for cooking or you can collect them for replanting. If you’re replanting them, make sure to rinse them, dry them with paper towel and place them in a paper bag (paper works better than plastic because it doesn’t keep the moisture in too much).

    Good luck!
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