How to Grow Cilantro
Coriander to the Brits

There are a lot of people out there who are asking how to grow Cilantro, so much so that one would think it's difficult to cultivate. Well I got good news for you all! It's all nonsense.

 Cilantro or coriander as it is known here in the UK and Chinese Parsley to the Chinese, germinates real quick.

It grows like mad in my hydroponic unit which I like to do to make sure I get it before any bugs get their teeth into it. (That's if they have teeth!)

Coriander cilantro floweringCilantro flowering

In the UK we like to call the herb Coriander but in other lands such as the US, coriander is the name for cilantro seeds, the spice.

There are 2 varieties that I like to grow. Coriander and Coriander Confetti. I will show you the difference between the seeds of both which is hardly noticeable and the leaf formation which is strikingly different.

The Two Varieties of
Cilantro / Coriander

Common Cilantro seedlingCommon coriander

Before I show you how to grow cilantro have a look at the two different types.

There is the wide leaf variety. This is the common kind. The leaf is light to a medium shade of green, very shiny on top with opposite pairs growing along the stems.

The leaf sections are rounded and pinnately lobbed. They are what you call the lower leaves and will stay this shape if you keep harvesting by pinching the new leaves.

Coriander cilantro confetti seedlingCilantro confetti

Then there is the unusual Confetti variety. The leaf colour is a darker green when the plant reaches maturity.

They are paired the same as the common cilantro along the stem and pinnately lobbed but their shape is feathery and pointed.

They are like the upper leaves on the common variety when it is bolting (sprouting flower buds) but the whole plant consists of them

Cilantro in potsHow to grow cilantro - coriander

How do they differ in taste? Most of the comments I have heard say that the confetti is sweeter but does not have the punch that common cilantro has.

But I have grown both at the same time and compared their taste. I like the confetti best. Yes it is sweeter but still has a strong punch to it.

Common cilantro seed
cilantro confetti seed

The seeds look the same as you can see in the photos. The only difference I can see is the confetti coriander seeds are slightly lighter in colour than the common coriander seeds. You will just have to trust what is written on the packet I guess.

How To Grow Cilantro
(Coriandrum sativum)

  1. Growing coriander (cilantro) is easy if you follow the directions for taking care of the plant. After creating an environment that will help it thrive, the plant does all the work itself.
  2. Grow indoors anytime if you don't mind the scent or in April and plant out.
  3. You can sow every 4 to 6 weeks inside on the kitchen windowsill or in a hydroponic unit for a succession of fresh crops.
  4. Better to plant seeds out in Spring from April to June in the ground for a good crop until the first frost.
  5. Keep plants about 25cm apart for enough growing space in a moderately rich well drained soil that is moisture retentive.
  6. Cilantro likes full sun for germinating the seed to light shade when the leaves appear.

How To Strengthen Flopping Cilantro

If your cilantro is flopping try this great tip!

These young cilantro plants in a hydroponic unit are supported using clear plastic diy cylinders.

I altered this tip from a facebook friend who suggested sowing the seeds in cut down clear plastic bottles.

Instead of using the cut down bottle to grow them in, I cut off top and bottom to make a clear cylinder. That way you can just slip it over the pot to support the floppy stalks until the plant shoots up new stronger ones.

Grow A Herb Today - Coriander
Activity for kids

Here are simple instructions for our young participants taking part in the Grow A Herb Today Activity. This is how to grow cilantro or coriander.

  1. Fill your pot with the compost and moisten it with water but don`t soak it.
  2. Make holes 5 cm deep with a pencil and put a seed in each. If you have lots of seeds put 2 in each.
  3. Fill in the holes again and place the pot on a warm windowsill. Don`t sit it where it`s draughty if you want your seed to germinate.
  4. Cover over with cling film and keep the soil moist by watering from the bottom of the pot.
  5. When the seedlings begin to appear, uncover and keep watering now and then when the soil is dry.
  1. HerbHints
  2. How to Grow
  3. Cilantro Coriander

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