How do you keep the plant productive for 'picking a few stalks to add to that great salsa'? I know with some herbs it is best to pinch it back before it flowers. My plant has grown several 2-3' stalks and has just begun flowering so I'm a little late to be pinching. The smaller-than-usual stems on the stalks do not have the same leaves and aroma as the ones used for cooking. Will a new plant spring up after it flowers? .... Thanks!
Cilantro is notorious for going to flower/seed quickly and early in the season. You must be very persistant at pinching off the flower buds before the flower and go to seed. That is the ony way to get the plants to keep producing foliage. It sounds like your plants may have already gone past the point of return! You might want to buy some fresh plants and start a new crop.
It's awfully hard to keep cilantro from bolting when the weather is warm or hot as it tends to get in Texas quite early in the year. It seems to be one of those plants that does best in cooler weather.
Joined: Sun Jun 08, 2003 10:53 am Posts: 21 Location: Austin, Texas
I plant cilantro from seed or plants in October or November and it grows well all winter. As soon as it gets warm in Feb. it starts to bloom. You might keep it a little longer in spring in a cool spot that gets afternoon shade but we Texans are forced to buy it in the summertime. Fortunately it is widely available and not too expensive.
When you buy it at the grocery store, treat it like flowers: cut the stems put them in water (I use a pint jar) and make sure leaves are not in the water. I put the plastic produce bag loosely over the bunch of cilantro and place it in the refrigerator. It will generally last for several weeks when treated in this manner. Change the water in the jar if it looks cloudy or dark.
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