Cilantro is the leaf of the young coriander plant, an herb in the parsley family, similar to anise. These plants produce an abundance of tasty, young leaves that you can harvest throughout the year. This species is very suitable to growing year round in a sunny windowsill or with the use of fluorescent lights. By following these easy tips, you can make sure that your plant thrives and gives you many tasty leaves for your favorite meals.
Cilantro is also known as Coriandrum sativum. Most experts recommend that you begin growing these plants from seed, as they are not good at being repotted. It is easy to start seeds. All you need to do is sprinkle them on top of your pot, and then cover them with a light layer of potting mix. This should be kept moist, and in no time you’ll have the plants sprouting through the surface.
Space and light are two of the main requirements that must be met in order for your plant to reach its full potential. Artificial lighting, such as fluorescent lights, can meet all of the plants needs as long as they are on for at least 14 hours. If you have a sunny window that will provide at least 6 hours of sunshine this will also suffice. The pot should be rather large to provide for the herb’s central tap root.
You should regularly harvest the young leaves while they are at their peak flavor. This also helps to keep the plant from flowering and going to seed. Fresh leaves are the most flavorful, as dried leaves lose their distinctive taste. Freezing is not an option.
If you want to save your seeds for next year’s crop, this can easily be accomplished. As long as you wait until the seeds are fully mature, you can easily store them until next year. You should take care to keep the seeds in a dark cool environment. These requirements ensure that your seeds will be viable when you choose to germinate them.
Growing cilantro in your kitchen is easy to do if you follow a few simple precautions. This herb requires a lot of lighting, at least 6 hours of sunlight or 14 hours of fluorescents. Since the plants have a central tap root, they need plenty of pot room and they don’t like to be repotted. It’s best to harvest and use the leaves while they’re young and fresh for the most flavor.
Health benefits of cilantro
Cilantro nutritional benefits include minerals – calcium, potassium, iron, manganese and magnesium. Cilantro contains high amounts of vitamin A and vitamin K. It also has beta-carotene, riboflavin, niacin, folic acid, and vitamin C. Cilantro is a natural and inexpensive way to detoxify the body. Using cilantro helps to advance the excretion of lead, aluminum and mercury from the body and this technique increased the body’s ability to heal from both viral and bacterial infection. The compounds in cilantro will help to loosen heavy metals from blood, tissue and organs and then assists in the transportation of these metals out of the body.
The benefits of cilantro include lowering blood pressure, guards against bacterial infection from Salmonella, reduces swelling, helps in the prevention of urinary tract infections, relieves arthritis, helps reduce nausea, reduces cholesterol, reduces cellulite, improves digestion, relief for stomach aches, eases mood swings associated with premenstrual syndrome, reduces cramping, promotes liver function, disinfects and detoxifies the body, lowers blood sugar, helps with insulin secretion, works as a natural anti-fungal and antiseptic for skin, works as a lung expectorant and helps conjunctivitis and other stresses on the eyes. Cilantro is an amazing cure-all, green herb!