Please donate to support our ‘Plants to Save the Planet’ Project. The Project is directed at enabling designers of ‘carbon farms’ and ‘food forests’: agroecosystems of perennial plants, to choose the most appropriate plants for their requirements and site conditions. We are working on a subset of plants in the PFAF database identified as having the most potential for inclusion in such designs. We are adding search terms and icons to those plants pages, and providing a range of search options aligned to categories of plants and crop yields, with Help facilities including videos. More >>>

Follow Us:


Persicaria odorata - (Lour.) Soják

Common Name Vietnamese coriander, Asian mint
Family Polygonaceae
USDA hardiness 9-11
Known Hazards None Known
Habitats Wet environments.
Range Southeast Asia - Thailand, Cambodia, Laos, Vietnam, Malaysia.
Edibility Rating    (3 of 5)
Other Uses    (2 of 5)
Weed Potential No
Medicinal Rating    (2 of 5)
Care (info)
Tender Moist Soil Wet Soil Semi-shade Full sun
Persicaria odorata Vietnamese coriander, Asian mint

Persicaria odorata Vietnamese coriander, Asian mint


Translate this page:


This name is unresolved, but some data suggest that it is synonymous with Polygonum odoratum Lour. Not to be confused with Solomon's Seal Polygonatum odoratum - (Mill.)Druce.

Physical Characteristics

 icon of manicon of flower
Persicaria odorata is a PERENNIAL growing to 0.2 m (0ft 8in) by 0.3 m (1ft) at a fast rate.
It is hardy to zone (UK) 10 and is frost tender.
Suitable for: light (sandy), medium (loamy) and heavy (clay) soils and can grow in heavy clay soil. Suitable pH: acid, neutral and basic (alkaline) soils. It can grow in semi-shade (light woodland) or no shade. It prefers moist or wet soil.

UK Hardiness Map US Hardiness Map


This name is unresolved.


Edible Uses

Edible Parts: Leaves  Oil  Shoots
Edible Uses: Oil

Young leaves are used raw or cooked as a flavouring [296 , 301 ]. The aroma is rather similar to coriander, with a hot, peppery but refreshing flavour [296 , 301 ]. Leaves have a coriander-like smell and a spicy, pungent, hot peppery flavour.[2-2]. A few leaves can be added to a mixed salad, or they can be cooked with rice, vegetables etc [301 ]. The flavour is destroyed by prolonged cooking [310 ]. A few young shoots, combined with water dropwort (Oenanthe javanica) are often added when preparing cabbage preserved in brine (like sauerkraut) [310 ]. Older, more red, leaves are generally considered too peppery to be used [301 ]. Although relished by the Vietnamese, the flavour of the leaves is not universally admired, though it is liked by some people who do not appreciate the taste of coriander leaves [310 ]. An oil can be extracted from the plant and is called Kesom oil - used as a flavouring [1-4].


Medicinal Uses

Plants For A Future can not take any responsibility for any adverse effects from the use of plants. Always seek advice from a professional before using a plant medicinally.
Abortifacient  Anaphrodisiac  Antiemetic  Antipyretic  Diuretic  Febrifuge  Stomachic

The leaves are used as a diuretic, stomachic, febrifuge and anti-aphrodisiac[310 , 785 ]. The fresh leaves appear to have abortifacient properties[310 ]. Juice prepared from the crushed leaves is taken as an antidote against poisonous snake bite[310 ]. Externally, the crushed leaves are applied against fever, vomiting, ringworm and phagedaena[310 , 785 ].


Our new book Edible Shrubs is now available.

Edible Shrubs provides detailed information, attractively presented, on over 70 shrub species. They have been selected to provide a mix of different plant sizes and growing conditions. Most provide delicious and nutritious fruit, but many also have edible leaves, seeds, flowers, stems or roots, or they yield edible or useful oil.

Read More

Edible Shrubs Book

Other Uses


Bog, water plant. Coriander (Coriandrum sativum) substitute where bolting is common. Attracts butterflies. Tolerate: Rabbit, Deer, Wet Soil.

Special Uses

Attracts Wildlife  Food Forest


Cultivation details

A short-lived herbaceous perennial plant often grown as an annual. Succeeds in tropical to warm temperate areas[46 ]. Light frost is probably tolerated[310 ]. Requires a moist soil, succeeding in shallow water[296 ]. Fertile soils with adequate soil moisture are essential for optimal production[310 ]. It grows best under partial shade, but full sunlight is tolerated if ample moisture is available[310 ]. The first harvest of the leaves can be taken when plants are nearly 2 months old; subsequent harvests are every 12 - 15 days in tropical areas[310 ]. Plants prefer boggy soils including ones with some standing water. Plants begin to struggle when temperatures dip below 45 degrees F. Pots can be brought indoors in fall for overwintering, but overwintering can sometimes be difficult because of the need to provide moist and humid growing conditions. Bloom in late summer, but bloom infrequently occurs in cool climates. [2-2].


Temperature Converter

Type a value in the Celsius field to convert the value to Fahrenheit:



The PFAF Bookshop

Plants For A Future have a number of books available in paperback and digital form. Book titles include Edible Plants, Edible Perennials, Edible Trees, and Woodland Gardening. Our new book to be released soon is Edible Shrubs.

Shop Now


Seed. The plant is easily propagated by stem cuttings with 4 - 6 internodes (8 - 10 cm long) taken from the top of mature stems[310 ]. These are planted obliquely 5 - 6 cm apart with a row spacing of 10 - 15 cm in raised beds of light, well-manured soil and are watered well[310 ]. Under warm and humid conditions cuttings start rooting after 3 - 5 days and growing after about a week[310 ].

Other Names

If available other names are mentioned here

Rau ram or Vietnamese coriander, Vietnamese mint, Vietnamese cilantro, hot mint, laksa leaf, praew leaf.

Found In

Countries where the plant has been found are listed here if the information is available

Asia, Australia, Cambodia, Canada, Hawaii, Indochina, Indonesia, Japan, Laos, Malaysia, North America, Pacific, SE Asia, Singapore, Tasmania, Thailand, USA, Vietnam.

Weed Potential

Right plant wrong place. We are currently updating this section. Please note that a plant may be invasive in one area but may not in your area so it’s worth checking.

None Known

Conservation Status

IUCN Red List of Threatened Plants Status : Not Listed.

Related Plants
Latin NameCommon NameHabitHeightHardinessGrowthSoilShadeMoistureEdibleMedicinalOther
Polygonum persicariaRed Leg, Spotted ladysthumbAnnual0.6 4-8  LMHSNM120

Growth: S = slow M = medium F = fast. Soil: L = light (sandy) M = medium H = heavy (clay). pH: A = acid N = neutral B = basic (alkaline). Shade: F = full shade S = semi-shade N = no shade. Moisture: D = dry M = Moist We = wet Wa = water.


Print Friendly and PDF

Expert comment


(Lour.) Soják

Botanical References

Links / References

For a list of references used on this page please go here
A special thanks to Ken Fern for some of the information used on this page.

Readers comment

QR Code

What's this?

This is a QR code (short for Quick Response) which gives fast-track access to our website pages. QR Codes are barcodes that can be read by mobile phone (smartphone) cameras. This QR Code is unique to this page. All plant pages have their own unique code. For more information about QR Codes click here.

1. Copy and print the QR code to a plant label, poster, book, website, magazines, newspaper etc and even t-shirts.

2. Smartphone users scan the QR Code which automatically takes them to the webpage the QR Code came from.

3. Smartphone users quickly have information on a plant directly for the website on their phone.

Add a comment

If you have important information about this plant that may help other users please add a comment or link below. Only comments or links that are felt to be directly relevant to a plant will be included. If you think a comment/link or information contained on this page is inaccurate or misleading we would welcome your feedback at If you have questions about a plant please use the Forum on this website as we do not have the resources to answer questions ourselves.

* Please note: the comments by website users are not necessarily those held by PFAF and may give misleading or inaccurate information.

To leave a comment please Register or login here All comments need to be approved so will not appear immediately.

Subject : Persicaria odorata  
© 2010, Plants For A Future. Plants For A Future is a charitable company limited by guarantee, registered in England and Wales. Charity No. 1057719, Company No. 3204567. This work is licensed under a Creative Commons License. Some information cannot be used for commercial reasons or be modified (but some can). Please view the copyright link for more information.
Web Design & Management