Nutritive Value: Coriander, popularly known as dhania forms an important ingredient of salads and is used to flavor soups and snacks. The dried seeds of coriander are used as a homemade medicine and as spices to give better taste and flavor to the food. Coriander contains 86 percent water, 6.3 percent carbohydrates, 3.3 percent proteins, 0.6 percent fats and is rich in calcium, iron, carotene, and vitamins B and C.
Soil and Climate: Coriander is grown on fertile soil. Sandy loam soil is the best for its cultivation. As it is a cool season crop it should be cultivated in winter. High temperatures can cause stunted growth.
Important Varieties: CIMPOS-33, CO.2 and Lam C.S.6 are the
major coriander varieties grown in South India. Lam C.S 6 is a
bushy and foliagetype plant that can be harvested within 30 days of
planting the seeds.
Planting and Irrigation: Before planting, coriander seeds are soaked in water for 12 hours which reduces the seed germination period from 15 to 7 days. It is sown on beds keeping two rows that are 10 cm apart. Well decomposed farm yard manure should be mixed with soil before sowing the seeds. Immediately after seed sowing the area should be watered. Coriander requires frequent watering during its vegetative growth period. Irrigation should be given at 46 day intervals.
Plant Protection: Coriander is a comparatively pest and disease free crop. However, at the initial stages wilting can be observed in illdrained and heavy soil which can be controlled by treating seeds with trichoderma biofungicide before sowing.
Harvesting: Coriander is normally harvested by uprooting the whole plant or by picking only tender leaves as a leafy vegetable 30 days after sowing but before flowering. For seed production the crop is harvested at full maturity after 130 to 150 days depending on the variety grown.