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How do you discourage cilantro from bolting too quickly?

I have a Coriander plant that I think is bolting. It started flowering and got quite tall.Most of the standard coriander leaves have gone, and have been replaced by Fennel-like leaves.

I assume I can't cook with these? Is there anything I can do to make it produce the standard type leaves?

  • Cilantro is the Spanish-American name for Coriander. The site is using US tags - so I've added the existing cilantro tag.
    – winwaed
    Commented Jul 24, 2011 at 17:26

1 Answer 1


We've had a lot of problems with cilantro bolting. I understand the leaves lose their flavor, as well as looking a bit odd. We've let it go to seed, and let it seed itself (with Texas weather that means the late spring/summer seed becomes the autumn crop).

You could also collect coriander seed - this is a herb/spice as well.

Cilantro/coriander bolting is a response to heat. It is a defense against dying - much better to produce new seed and to pass the genes on to the next generation. So you choices are to let it go to seed and accept there's a limited growing season; or to find a cooler place for it.

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