Why I Let Cilantro Bolt and You Should Too

Cilantro is one of our family’s favorite herbs to grow. We use it in cooking various dishes and always include it in our guacamole. In the garden it tends to be very short lived in the heat of the summer. Cilantro is very heat sensitive and will produce flowers very fast when the temperatures get warm. When a plant begins to flower is called bolting but in the case of this herb it’s not a bad thing. There are lots of great reasons to let your cilantro bolt.

cilantro flowering - bolting

Cilantro produces small tiny clusters of white to pink flowers that are very ornamental. While that might be a great reason in itself to let cilantro flower cilantro also attracts small bees and pollinators to the garden. It’s also never bothered by deer or rabbits so it makes a great plant to keep next to garden areas that may have issues with those creatures. The scent helps to dissuade garden raiders from nibbling nearby plants. After flowering cilantro will eventually go to seed which then becomes the spice coriander. The seed is very easy to collect either by hand or by pulling up the plant to thrash into a box or paper bag. Once the seed is formed the plant fades away and is done but not before producing hundreds of seeds for your use either as a spice or as a way to make more cilantro.

Cilantro Growing Tip:

To help keep cilantro from bolting a little longer try growing it in a pot outdoors where it can be moved into the shade.

Collect and save the seeds to plant outdoors every couple of weeks in the garden to sustain your harvest over the warm season. This is a technique called succession planting. The cilantro seeds will germinate and begin the cycle all over again!

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