Cilantro is a popular herb, with a piquant flavor that adds zest to a number of dishes, including salsas, stir fries, salads, soups and curries. Cilantro isn't difficult to grow, but the plant won't tolerate hot weather. If you live in a cold-winter climate, cilantro can be planted in spring for harvest in summer and fall. In warmer climates, plant cilantro in autumn, and harvest the following spring.
Purchase small cilantro starter plants at a greenhouse or nursery that specializes in herbs. Select a compact plant with no yellow or wilted leaves.
Use a spade or a garden fork to cultivate the top 4 to 6 inches of soil. Work 2 to 4 inches of manure or compost into the soil. Select a planting spot in full sunlight. If you live in a hot, dry climate, plant cilantro in a cool, semi-shady part of your garden.
Add a general-purpose time-release fertilizer to the soil before planting. Follow the package directions regarding specific rates of application.
Use a trowel to dig a small hole for each cilantro plant. Plant the cilantro at the same depth at which it was planted in its nursery container, as planting cilantro too deeply can cause the plant to rot.
Water the cilantro plants immediately after planting, and keep the soil constantly moist until the plants are established and showing new growth. After that time, water only during hot, dry weather as cilantro doesn't do well in damp soil.
Control weeds around the cilantro plant by cultivating the top of the soil with the corner of a hoe, being careful not to disturb the roots. Spread 1 to 2 inches of mulch around the plants to deter weeds and keep the roots cool.