Growing Coriander at the Allotment

Growing Coriander at the Allotment

Coriander is an aromatic herb, often used in curries and Asian cuisine. 

You can start sowing seeds indoors in early spring from March onwards, but it is best grown on from a young plant or sown outside, directly in the soil for a longer crop. Coriander is an annual plant and will die off later in the season. Coriander has long tap roots, which makes it difficult to transport out, once it is established.

Coriander likes a sunny position or shady if you do not want your coriander to seed. You can keep sowing every few weeks for a larger and longer crop. If you are growing coriander for the leaves and not for seeds, pick off the flowers as they form buds. Hot and sunny conditions can cause coriander to go to seed and therefore will depend heavily on the purpose of your coriander plants.

Water regularly and keep weed-free; you may need to protect it from any colder spells with fleece. If the leaves start turning yellow, it is worth feeding it with some general liquid fertilizer.

Coriander leaves can be picked regularly throughout the season once young leaves have grown, which will encourage with re-growth also. If you are growing it for the seeds, wait until the flower heads have died back and pop them in a bag and store them in a cool, dark place. After a couple of weeks, give them a shake and the seeds will fall out.

Coriander can be used freshly chopped and added in cooking as well as salads. It can be frozen in water - ideally in an icetray for storage. The leaves can be dried too. Coriander seeds need to be dried and used within a year; within 6 months to get the best from their flavour. Store dried seeds in an airtight container and keep them in a cool, dark place.

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Growing Coriander in Summary

Sowing Coriander

  • Sow from March in full sun for seeds
  • Sow in partial shade for leaves
  • Sow in final growing position

Growing Coriander

  • Keep weed-free and water regularly
  • Add some general fertilizer 
  • Protect in colder weather with fleece


Harvesting Coriander

  • Pick leaves often, remove flower heads
  • Wait until flower heads have died off if growing for seed
  • Leaves can be frozen, dried and seeds can be dried