The benefits of having a perennial plant are numerous. Apart from the year-round yield they give, you also have the advantage of peace of mind in adverse weather conditions because of their hardiness.
Nevertheless, it doesn’t mean that annual crops and herbs are bad. On the contrary, most of the plants we benefit from complete their cycle within a year.
So, suppose you have cilantro in your garden for the first time.
In that case, you may want to know whether it’s a perennial or you’ll have to replant every cycle because it tends to keep you guessing if it is annual or perennial as it constantly exhibits traits of annual and perennial crops at the same time.
So, is cilantro a perennial? Cilantro is an annual plant, but it is often mistaken for a perennial due to its self-seeding nature. When seeds from a mature cilantro plant fall to the ground, they tend to in the soil, and when the temperature cools down during fall or winter, they begin to re-germinate and grow right back after the initial plant has died off. Thus, giving people the impression that it is perennial.
Is Cilantro Cold Hardy?
Cilantro is frost tolerant and is an excellent plant to grow during winter. Cilantro is capable of surviving light frosts and can withstand temperature dips as low as 10 degrees Fahrenheit.
Cilantro, being a cold-weather plant, is highly sensitive to heat. Plant Cilantro during winter or fall, but not at the peak of summer.
Cilantro can survive a bit of the light warmth of summer, but a temperature higher than 85 degrees Fahrenheit will cause the rapid withering of the plant’s leaves.
This climate selection means that cilantro will not fare too well in warmer zones (zones 9, 10, and 11). Cilantro plants at not in the minor drought tolerant and cannot withstand either dry season or dry soil.
The ideal garden growing conditions for cilantro will be soil with a pH of 6.5, surplus soil nutrients, adequate shading and irrigation, and mulching if need be.
Cilantro is a cool-season plant, but it does need full sun as well. Therefore, you should best plant cilantro in a spot where it can be accessed by the mild morning sun and shaded from the coarse rays of the afternoon sun.
Which Climate Is Excellent For Cilantro?
When it comes to planting cilantro, climates, and zones, come into play. In addition, cilantro can’t and won’t survive in the face of drought or severe frost.
Different zones have different weather conditions that may or may not be favorable to a cilantro plant. Cilantro is an annual plant, but its lifespan is shorter in warmer zones.
The ideal temperature for cilantro falls between 50 and 80 degrees Fahrenheit. It can survive light frost and cannot tolerate scorching weather.
Considering this, it would be safe to now say the best zones to grow cilantro are zones 5-8. These zones possess frost and heat in moderation, and this is just what a cilantro plant needs to bloom.
Can I Plant Cilantro In My Zone?
Before raising a cilantro garden, it would be advisable to do a little background check and know what zone your region falls into. This would give you a heads up on whether you’re to expect a bountiful yield or not.
When growing cilantro, you’ll have to put a lot of consideration into soil conditions, weather conditions, and of course, climate.
Cilantro does its best when situated in regions with moderate frost. This is because it adapts more readily to cold weather than it foes to the heat of summer.
If you are situated in regions with a relatively hot climate, possibly zones nine and above, your cilantro plant would need regular irrigation and constant shading to keep it alive and happy.
And if you happen to live in regions with a cooler climate, probably zones three to eight, consider planting your cilantro indoors. Cilantro is cold, hardy, valid, but excessive frost can kill it as well.
Cilantro is cold-hardy and can survive in zones 2-4 with slightly high frosty conditions. But zone 1 is not precisely safe ground for cilantro. Cilantro planted in zone 1 will rapidly die off from frostbite.
It is also possible to grow cilantro in zones 9-11. However, concerted effort would need to be put into its irrigation to ensure it doesn’t dry out.
How To Grow Cilantro
Cilantro is self-seeding; it practically grows itself. Once seeds from a dying plant hit the ground, it waits out for a while and begins to grow back immediately after it encounters favorable weather.
Growing cilantro is not a complicated process. You just need firsthand knowledge of where, when, and how to grow it.
So, here are some tips on growing this plant.
1. Cilantro loves moisture and cannot handle extreme heat, so in a cooler climate, grow cilantro during summer, while in a hotter climate, you grow cilantro during the cooler part of the dry season.
2. Transplanting a cilantro plant is not a simple process. It takes care and experience to transplant a cilantro plant successfully. A cilantro plant does not even like to be transplanted. Instead, grow cilantro directly from seed.
3. Soil for cilantro should be a well-drained soil rich in organic matter. Soil drainage and aeration are essential as the plat does not do well in soggy or waterlogged soil.
Cilantro also requires a sufficient amount of soil nutrients for good yield. If the soil fertility is not enough, you should employ the use of fertilizer.
4. The pH of the soil should fall between 6 and 7.5, which is slightly acidic.
5. Cilantro requires adequate spacing. Space out the plants so that they have enough space. They sure would need from to produce big leaves for your consumption.
If you’re planting cilantro for leaves instead of seeds, they would require more spacing.
Furthermore, to keep your cilantro plant living as long as possible, here are some helpful tips.
I) Cilantro plants possess a taproot, so planting it in a pot would not give it all the space it needs to stretch out. Therefore, a garden bed always remains a better option to plant Cilantro on.
But if you must pot the plant, use a big pot big enough to house its stretching roots.
II) Make sure your cilantro never dries out. Exposure to the slightest form of drought would cause the leaves to curl up and either in no time.
Keep your plants adequately moist because excess irrigation can kill them as well. Moderation is vital in all things.
III) Mulching comes in handy too. You could use organic mulch such as hay, straw, or fodder to cover the garden ground. Mulching helps to retain soil moisture. It also refrains the growth of weed.
The cilantro plant also referred to as coriander, is widely grown across the United States for its leaves and seeds, which add an excellent aroma to most dishes.
Cilantro is often mistaken for a perennial due to its ability to self-seed and regerminate in the exact spot a previous plant was.
The time and location of cilantro are planted a significant role to play in its growth rate. Different zones in the US have other weather conditions which may or may not be cilantro-friendly.
Before you plant your cilantro, you should run a little background check to know which some your region falls into.
Cilantro being an annual, will not exceed its 12-month lifespan. It will make it past light frosts in winter, but with the arrival of the harsh rays of summer, the plant will gradually bolt, go to seed, then wither off.