Some expats have thought incorrectly that culantro is the Spanish word for coriander or cilantro. These are related but different plants, and the production of culantro coyote, as it is called here, is an important crop in the cantons of Siquirres and Turrialba.
To aid the production, the Ministerio de Agricultura y Ganadería just came out with a manual on good practices for raising the biennial herb.
Culantro (Eryngium foetidum) has a much stronger taste than cilantro (Coriandrum sativum), according to Purdue University, which notes that the herb is mostly unknown in the United States cusine even though it grows wild in the south. It also has medicinal value.
The purpose of the new manual is to produce a crop that is safe for national consumption and export, the agricultural ministry said. The manual favors non-chemical and biological control of insect pests.