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How Often to Water Cilantro

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We like to prepare different dishes with cilantro in our home, so we grow cilantro every year. Occasionally readers write to us asking how often to water cilantro because their cilantro plants are not growing properly. In this article, I will clear up any concerns about watering cilantro. I will explain everything about watering cilantro seedlings, potted cilantro, cilantro outdoors, and cilantro indoors. Continue reading to learn all about how often to water cilantro.

How Often to Water a Cilantro Plant

So, How often to water a cilantro plant? The short answer to that question would be that you should only water cilantro when you notice that the soil is dry (not extremely dry), but different factors must be considered. For example, watering a potted cilantro plant is not the same as watering a cilantro plant outside in full sun.

It is also essential to use a suitable substrate that allows good drainage and favors moisture retention. That is why to know how often to water cilantro should consider certain factors such as:

  • Type of soil: A well-drained substrate that favors moisture retention will need less watering than one that loses water quickly. For example, clay soils do not retain moisture.
  • Type of pot: Some pots tend to retain moisture more readily than other pots. Also, if the pot has insufficient drainage holes, it will be detrimental to the cilantro.
  • Location of the cilantro plant: The site to place the cilantro plant is an important factor to consider. A cilantro plant in full sun will need more water than one in partial shade.

That’s why I will explain how often to water cilantro correctly so that your plant grows and develops appropriately. Continue reading to learn all about watering cilantro plants.

How Often to Water Cilantro Seeds

It is possible to get cilantro seedlings, but the most common way to have a cilantro plant in your home is from seed. If you grow cilantro from seeds, keep the substrate moist but not soggy.

Cilantro seeds take approximately 7 to 10 days to germinate. It would be best to keep the substrate moist but not waterlogged from when you plant cilantro seeds until they germinate. Check daily if the substrate is moist to obtain successful germination.

Did you know that you can grow cilantro in water? I recommend you read our article about how to grow cilantro in water.

how often to water cilantro seeds
How Often to Water Cilantro Seeds? Water cilantro seeds lightly but consistently to keep the soil moist. Aim for daily watering or as needed, ensuring not to overwater.

How Often to Water Cilantro Seedlings

Once cilantro seeds sprout, watering for cilantro seedlings is a little different. As cilantro seedlings grow and have more leaves watering should be decreased. As a general rule, water cilantro seedlings every 2 to 3 days.

Before watering, check the soil moisture by inserting a stick of about 1-2 inches (2.5 to 5 cm) into the soil. When you remove the stick from the soil, you see it is dry. It is time to water the cilantro seedlings. On the other hand, if the stick comes out of the soil and is wet, it means the substrate of the cilantro seedlings is still wet.

Additionally, you can add a layer of organic mulch around your cilantro seedlings to promote moisture retention and prevent weed growth. Cilantro seedlings do not like to stand in waterlogged soil, so be sure not to overwater them. Allow the first inch (2.5 cm) of soil to dry out between waterings.

how often to water cilantro seedlings
How Often to Water Cilantro Seedlings? Water cilantro seedlings every 2-3 days or when the top inch of soil feels dry. Avoid overwatering; maintain consistent moisture for healthy growth.

How Often to Water Cilantro in A Pot

When growing cilantro in a pot, the watering frequency will depend on several factors, including the pot size, climate, and soil type. Generally, water cilantro in a pot when the first few inches (cm) of soil are dry. Hot and dry climates will cause the soil to dry out faster, necessitating more frequent watering. In contrast, cooler and humid environments may require less regular watering.

The size of the pot and its drainage capabilities play a significant role in watering frequency. Smaller pots tend to dry out more quickly, so you may need to water them more often. Ensure the pot has drainage holes to prevent soggy roots, as cilantro does not tolerate excessive moisture.

As mentioned earlier, insert a stick into the substrate of the potted cilantro to check for moisture. If the stick comes out dry, it is time to water the potted cilantro. Additionally, you can use a very inexpensive moisture meter that works very well with all plants.

Remember to check the moisture in the substrate before watering potted cilantro. Also, check that the pot has enough drainage holes and that the drainage holes are not clogged.

how often to water cilantro in a pot
How Often to Water Cilantro in A Pot? Water cilantro in a pot every 2-3 days or when the top inch of soil dries out. Ensure proper drainage and don’t let the soil become waterlogged.
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  • Kindly NOTE: This soil tester can not be applied to test pH value of any other liquid. If the soil is too dry the indicator will not move, and water it before testing.
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  • NO BATTERY NEEDED: Simply insert the meter into soil, wait few minutes, accurate test results will be displayed on the readout panel. No battery is needed.

How Often to Water Cilantro Outdoors

The frequency of watering cilantro outdoors depends on several factors, such as the climate, weather conditions, soil type, and the maturity of the cilantro plants. Generally, cilantro prefers consistently moist but not waterlogged soil.

After transplanting or sowing cilantro seeds, keeping the soil consistently moist is essential to help the plants establish their root systems. Water the plants gently once or twice daily or as needed to ensure the ground remains evenly moist.

Once cilantro plants have established themselves, you can reduce watering frequency. In mild climates or during periods with sufficient rainfall, you might only need to water them every 2-3 days. You may need to water them daily or every other day in hot and dry climates.

As cilantro reaches maturity and becomes more tolerant of environmental conditions, you can space out watering every 3-5 days, or even longer, depending on your climate and weather patterns.

Apply organic mulch to promote moisture retention in cilantro grown outdoors. In addition, using organic mulch will prevent weed growth. A drip irrigation system should be used to water cilantro properly.

How Often to Water Cilantro Indoors

Watering cilantro indoors is slightly different from outdoor care. Indoor cilantro plants are typically grown in pots, and their watering needs can vary based on factors like indoor temperature, humidity, pot size, and the potting mix used.

Typically, water your cilantro in indoor pots every 3 to 4 days while regularly examining the soil moisture by gently probing the top with your finger or stick. After watering, ensure proper drainage by letting excess water escape from the bottom of the pot to prevent problems like root rot, which may result from prolonged exposure to standing water.

Tips For Watering Your Cilantro Plant

Watering your cilantro plant properly ensures its healthy growth and productivity. Here are some tips for watering cilantro:

Consistent Moisture: Cilantro prefers constantly moist soil, so keep the soil moist, not waterlogged. Avoid letting the soil dry out completely between waterings.

Check Soil Moisture: Regularly check the soil moisture by inserting a small stick of about 1-2 inches (2.5 to 5 cm) into the soil. You can also use a moisture meter. Water the plant when you notice the first inches (cm) of soil is dry.

Watering Frequency: The frequency of watering will depend on various factors, including indoor or outdoor conditions, climate, pot size, and soil type. As a general guideline, indoor potted cilantro may need watering every 3-4 days, while outdoor cilantro may require watering every 3-5 days.

Morning Watering: Water cilantro in the morning if possible. Morning watering allows excess moisture to evaporate during the day. It reduces the risk of fungal diseases that thrive in damp conditions.

Drainage: Ensure your pot or planting area has proper drainage to prevent water from accumulating around the roots. If growing cilantro indoors, choose pots with drainage holes to allow excess water to escape.

Avoid Overwatering: Overwatering can lead to root rot and other issues. It’s better to slightly underwater than to overwater. Allow some time for the soil to dry before watering again.

Mulch: If growing cilantro, consider applying a layer of organic mulch around the plants. Mulching aids in preserving soil moisture, minimizing evaporation, and inhibiting the growth of weeds.

tips for watering your cilantro plant
Ensure your pot has drainage holes to prevent water accumulation.

Final Conclusions About Watering Cilantro Plants

So, How often to water cilantro? The watering of the cilantro plant will depend on different factors such as location, substrate, humidity, and other factors. The watering frequency will differ for potted cilantro and cilantro grown outdoors. Always check the moisture content of the substrate before watering cilantro.

Hopefully, this article on how often to water cilantro will clear up all your concerns, and you will be able to water your cilantro correctly to avoid problems during the growth and development of the cilantro plant. I recommend you read our article on how to harvest cilantro without killing the plant.


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About Henry Morgan

Henry Morgan is an agronomist horticulture founder of The Garden Style Company and The Garden Style Website. He previously worked for Mondelēz International as an Agronomist Engineer specializing in agricultural products management in highly populated areas. In 2000, Henry started working with farmer-producers in agricultural businesses selling wholesale fresh produce and retail plants in Van Buren, Arkansas. Nowadays, Henry lives in California, where he offers expert consulting services for organic vegetable gardening. As a science writer working with his wife, Julia, Henry shares his passion for gardening and farming, trying to reach and teach as many folks as possible.

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