Lemongrass

Name

Botanical Name

Family

Native to

Water

Sun

Soil

Height

Width

Space

Lemongrass

Cymbopogan citratus

Poaceae

Malaysia, Sri Lanka, and southern India

Plenty of moisture

Full sun

Fertile; well-drained

3-5 feet

24-30"

Price

4" Pots:  $2.20

6" Pots:  $3.50

Clay pots and other planters:  Price Varies

Description

  • A clump-forming plant with linear grass-like leaves.  

  • Has a distinct, fresh, lemon scent when crushed or chopped

Keeping it Going

  • Loves fertile, moist, well-drained soil

Won't Tolerate

  • Temperatures below 45 degrees (in-ground plants can be overwintered in warm climates with extra mulch at its base.  This will protect it from severe damage.  Plant will grow back in the spring.  Plants in cold climates need to be overwintered inside.

  • Too little moisture will affect flavor and stunt growth.

  • Standing water.  Lemongrass likes moisture, but does not like to sit in it.

History

Points of Interest

  • Uses:  Medicinal, culinary and aromatic

  • Medicinal:  The essential oil has antiseptic properties and is used to treat rheumatic aches and pains (external application) and sometimes taken for indigestion and gastric upsets.  Always consult a physician when trying home remedies.

  • Culinary:  Young white stems are chopped and stir fried in Asian style cooking.  The leaves may also be infused to make tea.

  • Aromatic:  The essential oil is used in both home and commercial perfume industries in the manufacture of soap, perfume, and cosmetics.  In the food industry, it is used as a flavoring for food and liquor.

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