Coriander also commonly called Dhania in central/Northern India and Kothmir in Maharashtra. It is an annual herb in the family Apiaceae. Coriander is native to southwestern Asia west to north Africa. It is a soft, hairless, foetid plant growing to 50 cm tall. The leaves are variable in shape, broadly lobed at the base of the plant, and slender and feathery higher on the flowering stems. The flowers are borne in small umbels, white or very pale pink, asymmetrical, with the petals pointing away from the centre of the umbel longer (5-6 mm) than those pointing to the middle of the umbel (only 1-3 mm long). The fruit is a globular dry schizocarp 3-5 mm diameter.
Coriander has been used as a folk medicine for the relief of anxiety and insomnia in Iranian folk medicine. Experiments in mice support its use as an anxiolytic. Coriander essential oil showed a delay in E. Coli growth, suggesting possible agricultural anti-bacterial applications.
Coriander seeds have also been used to prepare a traditional diuretic in India . The diuretic is prepared by boiling equal amounts of coriander seeds and cumin seeds. The extract is then cooled and consumed as a diuretic.