As essential herb we can use every time you cook, cumin becomes an important part of your kitchen. What are you going to do to keep it in stock? Sure you can buy tons of cumin so that you’ll never out of it. But it is always better to understand the steps of growing cumin so that you can take fresh cumin anytime without leaving your house.
This annual herb loves the heat so much. But no matter where you live, you can always grow this herb in your garden. Cumin is annual herb that is categorized in parsley family. Many cuisines become better thanks to cumin. Besides, cumin is one of famous spices known around the world. Want to know more about this herb? Enjoy what you’ll see down here.
- 1 What to Know Before Growing Cumin
- 2 Background of Cumin
- 3 Things You Should Know Before Growing Cumin
- 4 Follow These Steps to Grow Your Cumin Seeds
- 5 Things to Prepare Before Growing Cumin
- 6 Tips That Help Growing Your Cumin Successfully
- 7 Treating and Growing Cumin
- 8 Facing Some Issues of Cumin Plants
- 9 Harvesting the Seeds after Growing Cumin
What to Know Before Growing Cumin
The taste of cumin is a little bit bitter, earthy, and warm. This herb is able to enhance the taste of many dish types. Cumin usually is used in Mexican cuisines, North African cuisines, Middle Eastern cuisines, Mediterranean cuisines, and Indian cuisines. Cumin can grow tall up to one or two feet while producing fragrant flowers in white or pink colors.
This herb is growing in the midsummer. You can find cumin growing between feathery foliage that looks like dill. Cumin’s flowers come with fragrant seeds that will be mature only in 120 days counted after you finish growing cumin. Flowers of cumin invite the beneficial insects like predatory wasps, ladybugs, and lacewings.
If you have some crops that are used to suffer from the infestations of pest, you need to add cumin between those plants. Cumin is going to help controlling the pesky insects. If you’re also interested in growing cumin, you’ll need to know its history first. Then you’ll understand the right things to do to make it grow.
Background of Cumin
Cumin comes from eastern Mediterranean. Back to India and Middle East, everybody knew cumin since this herb is well known as famous aromatic herb. It has been used in both cuisine and medicine. Ancient Egypt is used to growing cumin and use the herb not only as spice but also as preservative that helps the mummification process.
Ancient Greeks would love to keep cumin seeds in shakers then put them on table. They used the cumin seeds just like using black pepper, for daily use. In both Ancient Greece and Rome, cumin seeds were also commonly prescribed in order to aid the reproductive health of women. Cumin contains active ingredient which is volatile oil that has carminative and antioxidant properties.
Even today, Ayurveda tradition is still growing cumin and using it for medical purpose. They use this herb to make tea, to improve the digestion, to assist fats assimilation into body, and to relieve bloating. Because of cumin is highly adaptable to assorted different climates, it can grow in various places but the best home for this herb is still India.
Things You Should Know Before Growing Cumin
Do you know the most ideal place to start growing cumin? Since it was Mediterranean crop, this herb cannot tolerant the frost. Cumin also requires hot and long growing season. Can you plant and grow it in colder climate? Yes you can. However, you better start planting your cumin seeds indoors before transplanting seedlings to your garden once the temperatures become higher than 60 degrees.
There are methods to follow for successful transplants. Make sure each step is followed carefully so you will be successful in growing cumin.
1. Planting your cumin seeds inside the house
Plant your cumin seeds indoors for four weeks to eight weeks. Germination will take fourteen days. By soaking your seeds for around 8 hours before sowing them is going to increase the rates of germination. Consider using biodegradable pot that allows you to start growing cumin and transplanting it directly into garden.
2. Growing Cumin using soil blocks
Starting your cumin seeds can also be done in the soil blocks. By doing this, you will let the seeds to propagate in homemade blocks that have compressed soil. The soil is going to eliminate plastic pots need. Soil blocks will also reduce the transplant shock threat. This is a good way in start growing cumin.
Follow These Steps to Grow Your Cumin Seeds
- Sow your seeds at quarter inch deep inside your potting mix. Keep your soil moist by misting it regularly. Keep misting until the sprouts appear.
- Your plants are ready to be transplanted outside to your garden when they turn one or two inches tall. After growing cumin for between four and eight weeks, and making sure that the nighttime lows stay at 60 degrees Fahrenheit, your plants can be transplanted outside.
- If you live in the warmer climates and there is more than four months free from frost, sowing cumin seeds outside since the beginning is the right solution. It is going to eliminate transplant shock risk.
- Direct sow your seeds in a place that gets full sun for some hours each day. When planting your cumin seeds, make sure that you add some space between each seed. Leave 18 inches space between every cumin seed.
- Instead of sowing your seeds in rows, you better sow them in clumps. Doing this is going to let your spindly plants to support one another when they’re growing.
- Your soil must stay moist for the next one or two weeks until your cumin seeds germinate.
- Remember that your cumin plant produces only small seeds number. If you need the seeds of your cumin plants, you might want to plant lots of them.
Things to Prepare Before Growing Cumin
Cumin plants need sunny and hot weather for about four months to become mature so that they can set the seed. So try to find the best spot in your garden that is exposed to full sun in long period for the whole day. Cumin plants prefer the sandy loam that is well drained. Yet, this plant is going to tolerate soils that are rich of nutrient. You can plant this herb in soil with 7.0 to 7.5 pH range.
You might think of how hard growing cumin is. But actually, when you start the maintenance, it won’t be harder than planting. Cumin plants are drought tolerant. Yet, they do benefit from watering, especially when the weather becomes hot and dry. So water your cumin plants thoroughly before your soil dries out completely.
But don’t overwater your cumin plants since it is going to cause the root to rot. Be careful so that you won’t drench your plants. If you grow your cumin plants in areas that have long dry heat periods, regular misting will be necessary to keep your cumin plants moist but won’t cause the rotting. Mulch your cumin plants with shredded leaves, straw, or grass clippings.
The step above is going to help regulating the moisture of your soil while preventing your cumin plants from being drying out or waterlogged.
Tips That Help Growing Your Cumin Successfully
- Always start the seeds inside the house where the climates are colder.
- Plant out your cumin when the temperatures of nighttime are higher than 60 degrees Fahrenheit.
- Make sure you plant the cumin in location that’s exposed to full sun and in sandy loam that’s well drained.
- Grow your cumin plants in the clumps to make your cumin plants support one another.
- Mist your cumin plants regularly in order to keep them moist. But be really carefully so that you won’t overwater your plants.
- Mulch your plants to regulate the moisture of your soil.
Treating and Growing Cumin
Cumin plants are perfect plants. They produce the culinary herb. They also are incredible plants that attract the beneficial insects. Ladybugs, lacewings, also predatory wasps can be attracted by your cumin plants’ flowers. Those are incredible insects that will much away other insects like caterpillars. If the bugs that kill your plants are gone, you’ll grow more useful plants in the garden.
Unfortunately, cumin plants are susceptible to fungal diseases and some pests. Tiny pests might attach to foliage then make lots of holes in the leaves while shooting and sucking the sap. They cause most damage that makes you lose the plants’ younger parts. Aphid infestation is showed by some signs like curling leaves, stunted growth, and the yellowing foliage.
Aphids will also secrete the sticky substance that’s named honeydew. This is a dangerous substance since it is going to encourage sooty mold growth. Save your cumin plants from aphids by spraying them with strong water blast from hose. Make sure you spray your cumin plants on sunny and warm day in order to let your plants to dry immediately.
If you figure out some cases that are more serious, what are you going to do? Here is something to help.
- Consider applying insecticidal soap. Create this soap by mixing water solution with dish soap in small amount. Dilute a gallon of water that’s lukewarm with five tablespoons soap. You might also find some diseases when growing cumin. How to face them?
- Some fungal diseases like powdery and blight mildew will give problems to your cumin plants. Watching your cumin plants seriously and also avoiding overwatering your cumin plants are going to help keeping the diseases to minimum range.
- Some fungus comes when the conditions are humid and warm. They usually come during flowering stage to prevent seeds from maturing. They make your seeds shriveling up before blowing away. Prevent blight fungus by weeding your cumin plants in order to improve the air circulation of each cumin plant. Avoid overwatering but use the drip irrigation will also help.
Facing Some Issues of Cumin Plants
1. Anticipating the growth of powdery mildew when growing cumin
White colored powdery mildew that develops on plants foliage will inhibit the seed formation. This problem will also make your developing seeds become discolored and small. If the mildew comes to your cumin plants, remove them and dispose the leaves that are affected by the mildew immediately.
2. Protecting your cumin plants from powdery mildew
To help you preventing the powdery mildew from spreading, you must try applying a secret formula. Create this formula by mixing soap, oil, and baking soda. A tablespoon baking soda, a teaspoon horticultural oil, a teaspoon dish soap all mixed in one gallon water will create extraordinary formula. Spray this mixture on your cumin plants to prevent the disease.
3. Preventing your cumin pants from being attacked by another fungal
There’s one fungal disease that will cause wilting along with foliage discoloration. This fungal disease lives in soil and seeds. It can also spread through your soil via wind or water. The solution to face this problem is by harvesting your cumin seeds as soon as the seeds ripen. It is going to prevent this fungal disease to destroy the growing cumin plants.
Harvesting the Seeds after Growing Cumin
Averagely, cumin plants are going to produce cumin seeds after you plant them for 120 days. Some cumin plants provide the seeds only in a hundred days while the other plants need 150 days to provide the cumin seeds. During growing season you must watch your beloved cumin plants. Once you miss one harvesting window, your cumin seeds are going to dry out before scatter.
Cumin plants don’t have to ripen together at once. This means you must be ready to harvest your cumin plants bit by bit during the harvesting time. Some signs telling that your cumin seeds can now be harvested are the flowers that finished blooming and the clusters that start drying out and turning brown. Usually, it happens during the autumn.
Do you think you’re ready to start growing cumin? First, make sure your climate can support the growth of your cumin plants. Second, you should understand all steps to grow and maintenance cumin plants. Next, you must be ready to keep your cumin plants healthy. And finally, you must be prepared so that you can harvest your cumin seeds at the right moment.