Low growing plant produces green leaves.Used in salads and cooked like spinach.Purslane is also effective in…
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Lemon Grass is a tropical plant that produces a thick grass that can be used for flavoring many culinary dishes. It can also be used to make medicinal tea for the treatment of digestive issues and fever/flu-like symptoms.
The grass is thick, hearty, and robust with a delicious lemon flavor.
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Some people juice it with other homemade veggies.
Cats have been known to love lemon grass.
The oils from the plant can be used for flavorings and/or perfumes.
Day to Maturity: 80-100 days
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Lemongrass (Cymbopogon citrates) is a perennial, aromatic grass native to southern India and Sri Lanka that grows in the warm, humid climates of U.S. Department of Agriculture hardiness zones 11a through 13b. You can grow lemongrass in a greenhouse or indoors in pots. It is typically propagated from cuttings, although you can grow it from seed.
Spread a 2- to 3-inch layer of equal parts of coarse sand, organic compost and sphagnum peat moss on a seed tray. Bury the lemongrass seeds 1 inch apart and 1/4 inch deep in the mixture of sand, compost and sphagnum. Cover the seeds with a thin layer of compost or vermiculite and mist or gently water the mixture.
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Store the seed tray in the dark at 70 to 75 degrees Fahrenheit and gently water or mist it daily to keep the seeds moist. Remove the bag or plastic wrap when the seeds sprout. Put the tray in full sunlight. The sprouts will produce seedlings in two to four weeks (growfoodguide.com).
Put the base of the stalks in a jar of shallow water. Put the jar on a window sill with exposure to the sun. Keep the bottoms of the cuttings moist. Roots will develop in one or two weeks. When the roots are 2 inches long, plant the seedlings in a pot; if you let roots grow more than 2 inches long they get brittle and break easily.
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The mixture should be well drained. Water the plants two to three times a week to keep the soil moist but not saturated. Fertilize the plants monthly with a standard formula. A standard formula fertilizer contains equal amounts of nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium. Trim the tops of the leaves after the stalks are 3 feet high.
The pot should have a hole in the bottom for drainage. Keep the pot in a location that receives at least 6 hours of sun a day. Water the plant two to three times a week to keep the soil moist. Do not saturate (grow organic vegetables). Move your pot outside during warm summer weather.
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Keep reading to learn how you can grow it in your garden. Lemongrass is a tender perennial grass in the Cymbopogon genus. Since it’s native to the tropics, this herb only survives as a perennial outdoors in 10 and 11. If you live in Zone 9 or below, you can keep it perennial by bringing it inside during the winter.
These include West indian lemongrass (Cymbopogon citratus) and East indian lemongrass (C. flexuosus). Both of these species have an aromatic citrus scent and are used for culinary purposes. Other closely related species are C. nardus and C. winterianus. These two are both types of , which can deter pests in the garden, but are not generally used in the kitchen.
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Lemongrass grows in a clumping habit, with multiple stalks emerging from the same base. It can grow up to five feet tall with a spread up to four feet wide. The plant’s upright arching shape and attractive green leaves will add interest and texture to your garden. This herb is used in many cuisines for its edible, aromatic leaves and stalks.
Both the leaves and the stalks are used to flavor dishes such as soups and curries, but as they can be very fibrous, they are usually removed after cooking. The most prized part of this plant is the stalk’s tender inner core, which develops once stalks grow to be at least half an inch in diameter.
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This tropical grass is native to southeast Asia. Read more. The reports that the earliest reference to lemongrass oil came from the Philippines in the 17th century. Apparently this herb was introduced to Jamaica towards the end of the 18th century. Commercial production in the US started in the early 20th century, in Florida.
Containing a variety of vitamins and minerals, it is also rich in phytochemical compounds such as saponins, flavonoids, phenols, and alkaloids. The citrus scent comes from citral, one of the volatile oil compounds which also includes monoterpenes and sesquiterpenes. People often consume lemongrass essential oil for its antimicrobial properties. According to research published in the , the oil can help with sore throats, rheumatism, and digestion issues.
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Plant individual seeds six inches apart. Only put a sprinkling of soil over the seeds, as they need plenty of light to be able to germinate. Seedlings can take up to three weeks to emerge, and you’ll need to keep the soil moist during this period. Once seedlings are a few inches tall, thin individual plants to two feet apart.
If you are in seedling trays or containers, plant seeds one month before your predicted last frost date. If you want to plant in pots, choose one that is at least one foot wide and one foot deep. Lemongrass does spread, so it can quickly fill up the whole container.
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Fill containers with nutrient-dense soil and plant seeds six inches apart. Once seedlings are a few inches tall, thin single plants or clumps of plants to 1-2 feet apart. To transplant seedlings, wait until they are at least three inches tall and all danger of frost has passed. Plant 2 feet apart with 2-3 feet in between rows.
To take a cutting, cut the stalk cleanly with a knife about an inch from the ground. gardening. This will allow the stalk left in the ground to regrow. Cut off the upper portion of the stalk, leaving only the bottom three to four inches. If you don’t have lemongrass plants in your garden, look for it in the produce section of your grocery store.
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Cut off the leaves and use them in your cooking, making sure that you’ve got a good 3-4 inches of stalk, to allow for successful root formation (growfoodguide.com). Don’t cut off any of the bottom portion of the stem. If you do so, it’s unlikely to be able to form roots.
Change the water daily. The plant will begin forming roots within a week. After 2-3 weeks, the roots will be large enough to support the plant. At this point, transplant your lemongrass into well-aerated, nutrient-dense soil in a container or outdoors. Dig a 1/2-inch hole, place the cutting root side down, and backfill around the stem with soil.
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Alternatively, you can dig up a whole plant and then separate the stalks with your hands or a knife. Each division should contain at least one stalk with intact roots. After separating, plant the divisions 1-2 feet apart in your desired location. Make sure this area has full sun as well as nutrient-dense and well-aerated soil.
If you live in Zone 10 or above, you can grow it outside in the garden all year round. Once established, it doesn’t need much in the way of attention. Gardeners in Zone 9 and below will need to protect their plants during winter. The easiest way to do this is to grow it in containers.
Whether you’re growing it in the ground or in containers, lemongrass requires full sun and well-draining, moist soil that’s rich in organic matter. If you start plants from seed, they will be ready to harvest in 75-100 days after sowing seeds. If you leave the plants past this point, without cutting for harvest they will continue to grow and provide ornamental interest in the garden year-round in warm climates.
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If they have enough room, they can expand up to four feet in diameter, so bear this in mind when you choose your location! Give plants plenty of room to spread out Protect from frost and cold weather by bringing them indoors. Keep soil moist but not waterlogged and in dry areas you can mist the leaves for humidity.
Lemongrass is most often labeled with this generic common name. When you are looking for plants for your garden, look for C. citratus or ‘West indian lemongrass.’ This species is the best for culinary use, thanks to its strong, citrus flavor. There is only one cultivated variety of this species - vegetable.
This crop is one of the easiest to grow in terms of pest and disease pressure. Pests rarely attack it as it contains citronella, a natural pest-repelling compound. The only real disease threat to these plants is a fungus called lemongrass rust (Puccinia nakanishikii). Symptoms include brown, red, and yellow streaks on the leaves and this usually occurs in excessively damp, moist conditions.
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You can . The shoots and leaves of the plant can be used for flavoring dishes and for aromatherapy purposes. The leaves can be harvested once they are about a foot tall. Use scissors or a knife to cut off what you need. When you cut the stalks make sure you leave at least an inch at the bottom if you want the plant to continue growing.
If you harvest the stalks when they are smaller, the cores will still be fibrous. To harvest, use a knife to cut the base of the stalk an inch above ground level. Separate the stalk from the rest of the clump, and repeat until you have as much as you need.
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You can do this at any time after the plant is ready to harvest, particularly at the end of the season in colder regions when you know your plants will soon succumb to the weather. Lemongrass freezes well. To prepare the leaves and shoots, cut them into 3-4 inch lengths.
You just want pieces small enough that they can fit into an airtight container or zip-top bag. Next, place the pieces in a plastic zip-top bag and into your freezer. They will keep for up to a year. To use, remove from the freezer, defrost, and cut pieces into the size you need.
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You can also dehydrate the plants. If you live in a dry climate, cut the stalks and leaves into 3 to 6-inch pieces and place them on a wire cooling rack in a dry location. The plants will dehydrate in one to two weeks - vegetable. They are ready when there is no moisture left in them and they feel quite rigid.
If this is the case, drying in the oven or in a food dehydrator may be a better option for you. Store dried lemongrass in an airtight bag or container in a cool, dry location for up to 6 months. To dehydrate, set your oven to its lowest setting (usually warm or around 180ºF), and place 3-6 inch sections of leaves and shoots onto a baking sheet.
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If you harvest from younger plants, they can be chopped finely and don’t need to be removed. Photo by Meghan Yager Try using your lemongrass in this spicy and comforting red coconut curry chicken with toasted sesame noodles . Another great way to use lemongrass is in a refreshing tea.
Steep for ten minutes, strain, and sweeten to your liking with honey or sugar. You could try making your own essential oil from lemongrass, although it won’t be as pungent as the aromatherapy oil you can buy. To do this, you’ll need some mature lemongrass stalks. Discard the leaves as it’s the mature stalks that contain the highest concentrations of oil.
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Using a mortar and pestle, gently crush them to release the oils. Place the crushed stalks into a glass jar and cover them with a neutral carrier oil such as almond or grapeseed. Secure the lid and shake the jar before placing it in a sunny spot and leave it for 2-3 days, gently shaking once or twice a day. growfoodguide.com.
Plant Type: Tender perennial grass Water Needs: 1 inch per week Native To: Southeast Asia Maintenance: Low Hardiness (USDA Zone): 8b-12 Soil Type: Nitrogen rich, friable Season: Year round Soil pH: 5.5-7.5 Exposure: Full sun Soil Drainage: Well-draining Time to Maturity: 75-100 days Companion Planting: , Spacing: 1-2 feet Avoid Planting With: Corn, tomatoes Planting Depth: Surface, for seeds Family: Poaceae Height: up to 5 feet Subfamily: Panicodeae Spread: 4 feet Genus: Cymbopogon Tolerance: Heat, repels insects Species: C.
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It adds a nice, bright aroma and taste to the kitchen and attractive greenery to the garden. Have you tried growing this herb at home? Let us know in the comments. And if you’re looking to add other herbs to your garden, check out these growing guides: Photo by Meghan Yager © Ask the Experts, LLC.
See our TOS for more details. Originally published on December 9, 2019 - vegetable. Last updated: March 9, 2020 at 17:40 pm. Product photo via Burpee. Uncredited photos: Shutterstock. With additional writing and editing by Clare Groom and Allison Sidhu. The staff at Gardener’s Path are not medical professionals and this article should not be construed as medical advice intended to assess, diagnose, prescribe, or promise cure.
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When she’s not immersed in the world of gardening, Briana enjoys walking dogs at the local shelter and riding her bike. She believes that gardening fosters curiosity, continuous learning, and wonder.
Lemongrass (Cymbopogon citratus) grows wild in wet grasslands and open forests throughout Southeast Asia, where it is widely used as a culinary herb and medicine. Lemon grass grows up to a height of 1 – 5 meters and have mounding growth habit. Growing lemongrass from seeds is easy and requires little to no care, once established.
Smooth the surface and compress it 1/2 to 1 centimeter of space that remains between the ground and the top of the tray.Sow lemongrass seeds 1 inches apart and 1/4 inches deep. Squeeze the soil mixture over the tops of the seeds.Mist the lemon grass seeds with water from a spray bottle.
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Set the tray on a windowsill receiving good light.Remove the plastic wrap once a week to water the lemongrass seeds. grow organic vegetables. Mist the surface of soil until the top 1/2 to 1 inch is damp.Look for germination in about 10 – 30 days. Remove the plastic wrap once the lemongrass seeds grow up to 1 inch in height.Mist lemongrass periodically as it develops to maintain adequate moisture and humidity around the plants.Lemongrass is hardy in USDA Zones 10 to 12 and can be grown anytime.
Knotted lemon grass with stem to make tea Technically Lemon Grass is naturalized in only one county in Florida, but you can find it in many yards and landscaping, and in several warm states and northern flower pots. Lemon Grass I’ve grown two lemon grasses. One I got from a Chinese grocery that had some roots on it — locally grown — and one from a fru-fru farmers’ market in Winter Park.
After watching them for about ten years I think they are the same species, and they have spread easily in my yard. In fact, if I don’t mow — and I hate to mow — the lemon grass will quickly sprout from underground roots, though it also seeds. The only place I take it out is where it threatens to overshadow my sassafras sapling.
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Lemon Grass did not affect healthy cells. The amount used was one gram of lemon grass in a cup of hot water. I use a heck of a lot more than that when I make lemon grass tea so I should be super safe. In fact, here’s how I make Lemon Grass tea.
I keep tying until I have a big knot and enough left over for a dipping handle. Then I put it in hot water. It floats but that’s no problem. You can also use the handle to stir it with. Let it seep for a minute or two. I have been told all native grass seed in North America is edible, and while I suspect that is true I do not know so totally for a fact.
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I don’t know know if the seeds of that family (also called Andropogon) are edible but I doubt it - Seeds. IDENTIFICATION: Lemongrass is a clumping evergreen with narrow blades ranging blue-green to gold, edges are sharp, tiny flowers on stalk are white, cream, or green. Can grow from two to five feet high.
TIME OF YEAR: Year round in warm climates ENVIRONMENT: Pprefers moist soil and full sun. Propagated by dividing the root clump. Search the bucket of lemon grass at your local Asian market for lemon grass with some roots. Take home and plant. METHOD OF PREPARATION: Blades (leaves) soaked to make tea or flavor soups.
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If you like lemongrass herb in your soups and seafood dishes. You can grow your own lemon grass in your garden. In fact lemon grass can be easily grown in your garden. Lemongrass is used for treating digestive tract spasms, stomachache, high blood pressure, convulsions, pain, vomiting, cough, achy joints (rheumatism), fever, the common cold, and exhaustion.
Initially, you got to buy Seeds. vegetable. Buy lemon grass seeds online From Trusted Company, while selecting organic lemon seeds online its good practice to go through the reviews and be guided by an experienced person Fill a container almost to the top with sterile commercial potting soil. The container must have drainage holes and be at least 8 to 10 inches deep and 10 to 12 inches in diameter.
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Follow the label directions for mixing and application. Because you will be eating the lemongrass from the pot, use an organic fertilizer. The soil your lemongrass is planted in should never be allowed to dry out. Water regularly during the growing season. During dry, hot weather, mist your lemongrass and check the soil for dryness daily.
During the rest of the year, feed the plant monthly with the same fertilizer. After two or three years of growth, your lemongrass, especially container-grown lemongrass, will begin to crowd its location. Dividing the plants avoids overcrowding, which reduces productivity, and allows you to propagate the lemongrass. To divide the plant, dig it out or remove it from its container, and split the clump either with your hands or with a spade.
Harvest the lemongrass frequently once the plant is established because keeping it pruned encourages healthy growth. In a few weeks or months, your lone lemongrass stalk will become multiples The scent of lemongrass repels many pests and can be used to help keep mosquitoes at bay. Spider mites are a concern for lemongrass plants kept indoors.
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East Indian Lemongrass, Has a wonderful lemon scent and flavor. Not to be confused with the culinary lemon grass (Cymbopogon citratus). It can be used for teas, and in food provided it is well chopped as it is more fibrous than the culinary strain (Click here). The scent is great near your outdoor living space where it is also noted to have mosquito repellent properties.Treat lemon grass as an annual, or as a tender perennial in zones 9-11.\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003c!--split--\u003e\n\u003ch1\u003eLemon Grass Seeds\u003c\/h1\u003e\n\u003cbr\u003e\n\u003cul\u003e\n\u003cli\u003eLemon Grass Seeds - Cymbopogon flexuosus\u003c\/li\u003e\n\u003cli\u003eNon-GMO - Heirloom - Open Pollinated - High Germination Rate\u003c\/li\u003e\n\u003cli\u003eSeeds For: Herb Gardening\u003c\/li\u003e\n\u003cli\u003eDays to Full Maturity: 75-85 -- Grow As Annual or Tender Perennial (Zones 9-11)\u003c\/li\u003e\n\u003cli\u003eMountain Valley Seed Company Brand - Premium Quality Seeds\u003c\/li\u003e\n\u003cli\u003e\n\u003cstrong\u003eSeeds Per Package:\u003c\/strong\u003e\n\u003cul\u003e\n \n \u003cli\u003e250 mg - Approximately 600 Seeds\u003c\/li\u003e \n \u003cli\u003e1\/4 oz - Approximately 18,250 Seeds\u003c\/li\u003e\n\u003cli\u003e1 oz - Approximately 73,000 Seeds\u003c\/li\u003e\n \n\u003c\/ul\u003e\n\u003c\/li\u003e\n\u003c\/ul\u003e\n\u003c!--split--\u003e" Lemon Grass Seeds - Cymbopogon flexuosus Non-GMO - Heirloom - Open Pollinated - High Germination Rate Seeds For: Herb Gardening Days to Full Maturity: 75-85 -- Grow As Annual or Tender Perennial (Zones 9-11) Mountain Valley Seed Company Brand - Premium Quality Seeds 250 mg - Approximately 600 Seeds 1/4 oz - Approximately 18,250 Seeds 1 oz - Approximately 73,000 Seeds Gardens, Microgreens, and SproutsNewsletter Sign Up & Free Catalog Download We send out periodic emails with news, growing tips, discount codes, health ideas, and much more! Unsubscribe anytime, and we won't spam your inbox! Sign up for our newsletter, and receive our catalog PDF for free.
Lemongrass (Cymbopogon spp.) is the common name for a genus of aromatic grasses widely cultivated for culinary, medicinal, and other practical purposes. The essential oil of lemongrass is high in citral, geraniol, limonene, and other constituents useful for flavorings, perfumes, and household applications. Medicinal: Tea used to treat digestive problems and fever.
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Miscellaneous ● Any well drained soil. Full sun. Lemongrass is a tropical plant that freezes to death where winter temperatures drop below 15F (-9C). In all climates, potted plants are easy to keep through winter indoors. None generally needed. Cilantro, Echinacea and Basil. 2' 3" (70cm) each way (minimum) 1' 11" (60cm) with 2' 11" (90cm) row gap (minimum) Start with a purchased plant in spring, and grow it in a pot until the soil warms in early summer - grow organic vegetables.
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There are two common varieties of lemongrass. West Indian Lemongrass (Cymbopogon citratus) it grows easily in any warm climate (like Australia). East Indian Lemongrass (Cymbopogon flexuosus) has purple tinges in the stems. Lemongrass thrives in warm growing conditions with well-drained soil and is drought tolerant so don’t need much water.
The best place to plant lemongrass is in a warm and sunny position. Read more. Lemongrass plants thrive in all conditions but love the warmth so make sure they get enough sun. They look great in both pots and garden beds and can grow up to 1.2m tall and 80cm wide so make sure you give them room to grow.
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Firstly, you can buy lemongrass seeds from bunnings which will take around 21 days to germinate. Sow seeds 5cm deep and 50cm apart. Secondly, you can propagate lemongrass from a cutting (see the method below) and plant in the ground. Thirdly, you can buy a lemongrass bush and use as desired! Remember you’ll need to pull the stalk out of the ground to use in cooking so don’t use it all at once! Lemongrass is one of the easiest plants to propagate.
After a couple of weeks, you should see roots starting to grow, take your cutting and place it in the soil in your garden. Honestly, there isn’t a perfect time of the year to do this as lemongrass is really hardy it will survive most seasons. Click here. Lemongrass is so hardy that it isn’t susceptible to lots of pests and bugs.
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Cut back any dead foliage in late winter, early spring and watch it thrive. In Australia, you can harvest lemongrass year-round just be mindful that in winter it will take longer to grow back. Depending on when you plant it, generally, it takes a couple of months to grow to full size.
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Keep the compost moist but not wet. Do not exclude light as this aids germination which is often slow, taking 21-40 days. When seedlings are large enough to handle, transplant and grow them on in cooler conditions until large enough to plant outdoors. When lemon grass plants are well grown and all risk of frost has passed, acclimatise them to outdoor conditions over 7 to 10 days.
Keep lemon grass plants well watered throughout summer and provide an occasional liquid feed. Harvest individual stems of lemongrass when required by snapping them off at the base of the plant. To over winter, lift the plants in early autumn, pot up and grow through the winter in a greenhouse with a minimum winter temperature of 7C (45F).
Alternatively grow lemon grass plants permanently in 25-30cm (10-12") containers in a warm greenhouse or conservatory. Seeds and garden supplies will normally be delivered within the time period stated against each product as detailed above. Plants, bulbs, corms, tubers, shrubs, trees, potatoes, etc. are delivered at the appropriate time for planting or potting on.
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Orders for packets of seed incur a delivery charge of Orders which include any other products will incur a delivery charge of Where an order includes both packets of seeds and other products, a maximum delivery charge of will apply - regardless of the number of items ordered. Large items may incur a higher delivery charge - this will be displayed in your shopping basket (gardening).
Start seeds in small pots in spring. Sow thinly on the surface, pressing them down gently to ensure they are in good contact with the compost and water from beneath by placing the pot in a saucer of water. Germinate in a heated propagator.When seedlings are large enough to handle, arrange three in a small pot filled with multi-purpose compost and place on a bright, frost free windowsill.When roots show through the bottom move into a larger pot – it may be necessary to do this several times, plants eventually ending up in a 20cm (8in) pot, before the lemongrass is ready to be placed in a sunny spot outside in early summer.
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When roots appear through the drainage holes at the bottom of pots move into a slightly larger container. Plants can be harvested all year round. Either cut entire stems as necessary, trimming off leaves and retaining the bottom 8-10cm (3-4in), or divide the rootball up, cutting through it with sharp knife.Repot a section into a smaller container.
Leaves can also be infused to make a tea. Lemon grass has cane-like stems with blue-green leaves. An East Indian strain with a strong scent and flavour.
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PHOTO: graibeard/Flickr Lemongrass (Cymbopogon citratus) is a culinary and medicinal herb native to Southern India and Sri Lanka. While there are 55 varieties of lemongrass, only two are used in cooking: East Indian Lemongrass (also known as Cochin or Malabar Grass) and West Indian Lemongrass. It’s commonly cultivated in the Southeast Asian countries of Thailand, Vietnam, Cambodia and Laos for use in curries, soups, salads and other regional dishes, but the essential oil can be extracted for use in soaps, lotions, perfumes and deodorants, as well.
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Here’s what you need to know to get started. In the garden, lemongrass usually grows 2 to 4 feet tall and 2 to 3 feet wide, but in tropical areas, it can grow to as tall as 9 feet. As a tropical grass, it’s hardy to USDA hardiness zones 10 to 11, though the roots may be hardy to zone 8.
Lemongrass prefers fertile, loose, well-drained loam soil that is moist but not too wet. It will tolerate average soil if it has enough moisture and good drainage, but does best in soil with a pH of 6 to 7.8. Site it in a location with full sun or at least 6 hours of sun per day.
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During the growing season, feed it a half-strength solution of a balanced soluble fertilizer—once per week if in a pot and once per month if in the ground. Non-chemical fertilizers that are high in nitrogen include composted chicken manure, blood meal and feather meal. growfoodguide.com. Because of its high essential-oil concentration, lemongrass is generally pest-free and, in fact, is commonly used as an ingredient in natural insect repellents.
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Once you have harvested the number of stalks you want, remove the woody outer portion and the leaves. Save the leaves to dry, or compost them. Slice the tender part of the stalk, and add as needed to your recipe. Extra lemongrass can be refrigerated or frozen. In colder regions where lemongrass is grown as an annual, harvest the remainder plant in the fall, before the first frost sets in.
If you harvest more lemongrass than you need for one recipe or you have an ample supply leftover from an end-of-season harvest, you can freeze or dry the stalks and leaves for use throughout the winter. Lemongrass stalks can be frozen whole or in smaller pieces for about 6 months.
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Place them in a freezer bag or container labeled with the date and amount stored. To dry the stalks or leaves, cut them into pieces while the plant is still fresh, as they can become crumbly and difficult to cut when dry. Separate the leaves from the stalks, and lay them on paper towels or on a screen in a dry area out of direct sun.
Dried lemongrass can be used for up to a year. Inga Munsinger Cotton/Flickr You’ll have just about as much fun using your lemongrass as you will growing it. Here are some suggestions for making it a staple in your kitchen. This is the perfect way to use the parts of the lemongrass plant that is not flavorful enough for cooking - growfoodguide.
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Add honey or sugar to taste. Lemongrass tea is delicious hot or iced. Substituting lemongrass for ginger will result a milder flavor profile for any dish. Mince the more tender pieces of the stalk for this purpose. Lemongrass can be used in cream sauces in place of lemon juice, without the risk of the sauce curdling.
Use it the way a bay leaf would be used, and remove prior to serving. CIFOR/Flickr Lemongrass is regarded in herbal medicine as a diuretic, mild sedative, anti-fungal, anti-bacterial, stomachic, anti-parisitcal and anti-microbial. Both the whole herb and the extracted essential oil have been traditionally used to treat: stress colds headaches circulatory problems sore throats bacterial infections Lemongrass is also used in natural deodorants and insect repellents.
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Indoor lemongrass plants will benefit from regular feedings every two weeks, as they will quickly use up the nutrients in the potting soil. Keep the plants moist, but do not overwater them, as potted plants are subject to root rot if the soil remains soggy. The plants can be put back in the ground after the danger of frost has passed.
Cut the leaves down to about 1 inch above the base of the stalk, and place it in a dish or glass of fresh water—roots do not need to be attached. Set the dish near a sunny window, and change the water daily. After a few days, your stalk should begin to grow roots.
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This post may contain affiliate links. If you click on an affiliate link and make a purchase, we receive a small commission at no extra cost to you. Find our full disclosure here.I grow lemongrass in containers every year. When I give my raised bed talks, I usually tell the audience that I like to plant lemongrass in place of a spike or dracaena, in my ornamental pots because it provides that lovely dramatic height.
I love drying lemongrass for herbal tea, and come fall, when I fire up the crockpot, I toss it into hearty curries (growfoodguide.com). Until I started growing it myself, I didn’t really know how to harvest lemongrass. It’s not a particularly expensive herb to purchase, but there is something very satisfying about growing your own.
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This incredibly fragrant culinary herb is used in Thai, Vietnamese, Indian, and Malaysian cooking. There are health studies that show lemongrass can reduce inflammation, lower cholesterol, and relieve anxiety, among other benefits. vegetable. And if I ever come across a lemongrass lotion or soap, I grab one. I absolutely love the scent!I have found it challenging to grow lemongrass from seed, so I usually purchase plants each year.
However, once you have a plant, you can propagate lemongrass, so you have your own plants ready in the spring. The variety I grow, Cymbopogon Flexuosus, comes via a local grower, Freeman Herbs. It is an East Indian variety. I’ve also seen seeds for Cymbopogon citratus, which is a West Indian variety.I use vegetable potting soil amended with a bit of compost for all of my ornamental containers that contain edibles.
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I string lemongrass leaves up in a window with twine to dry for tea. They get a bit of morning sun, even though it’s recommended you hang them out of direct sunlight. That’s where I have the space to hang all my herbs. When the leaves have dried, I cut them into two- to three-inch pieces and store them in an airtight glass jar.When used in cooking, you want the thicker bit—this is the part you purchase at the grocery store.
For these thicker parts, you can use pruners to cut the culm as close to the base of the plant as possible. Wait until the plant is established before cutting. When first learning how to harvest lemongrass, it’s hard to know when it’s safe to start snipping. It’s generally recommended that stalks are at least a half inch thick before you snip, but my plants, though vigorous, don’t always produce stalks that thick.Remove the outer leaves from the lemongrass stalk and cut it into pieces that are big enough to remove when the dish is ready, much as you would with a bay leafIf you’re not saving the whole plant, you can pull it out of the pot in the fall, dust off all the soil, and separate each culm to store for the winter.
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But I love the flavour itself. I use pieces of the stalks in chicken curry and Thai coconut soup, but I’ll fish them out before serving - Read more.If you freeze lemongrass, simply take out the amount you need and toss it in the pot (or crockpot). I’ll give the ends a snip at this point to release more of the flavour.I put my dried lemongrass leaves in an unbleached tea bag to brew.
You can also brew fresh stalks in tea, just like you would with fresh ginger.Once you learn how to harvest lemongrass, you’ll be able to pick it throughout the season. However, do make sure if you want to eventually save all of it (leaves and stalks) for freezing or drying, that you get to it before your region’s first hard frost.
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Keep the soil slightly moist throughout the winter, but be careful not to overwater.I don’t bring my lemongrass plants indoors. They’re usually planted with other annuals that get tossed in the compost at the end of the season. But you can propagate a piece of your lemongrass to grow a plant for the following season.
Put your wee bit of lemongrass in a sunny window and change the water daily (or as often as possible). Check for roots in the first couple of weeks. Once you see decent root growth, transplant your piece to a pot filled with indoor potting soil for herbs.Lemongrass is a tropical plant, so you’ll want to make sure you’re well past your region’s frost-free date before bringing it back outside in the spring.
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When you start to grow your own food, a nice surprise is that some ‘exotic’ plants turn out to be easier to grow than you might expect. Lemon grass is one. A few years ago, I thought this only grew in the warmth of Thailand or Vietnam. The good news is that it also grows happily in the UK and other temperate climates, as long as it is brought inside over winter.
The flavour is more intense and delicious than shop bought, you get leaves as well as the stem (good for tea and flavouring), and the grasses look lovely waving in the breeze on a balcony or window sill - Read more. It can be grown from seed but the easiest way is from a fresh lemon grass stalk – that you can buy from most supermarkets, Asian stores and grocers.
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Last summer I met up with Sally Cunningham, horticultural expert for one of my favourite growing projects in the UK, Sowing New Seeds run by Garden Organic. Sally shows you how to grow lemon grass – and inspiring ideas on how to use it – in the video below. Start lemon grass in spring or summer and use the freshest looking lemon grass stalks you can find in the shops.
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Lemon grass on my London balcony Lemon grass is killed by cold so will need to be moved inside again before the first frost. Sally shows you in the video above how you can cut the leaves back so it takes up less space on your windowsill. If you don’t have much space inside (or don’t want a flat full of plants), the alternative is to harvest all the stalks at the end of the year (they freeze well), and simply start again next year.
Lemongrass is one of my favourite herbs. The fresh citrus tang it provides can be a subtle finishing touch to a spicy dish, or the refreshing main flavour to something a little more delicate. Used widely in Asia, Lemongrass (Cymbopogon citratus) is a delight to have in the kitchen and there is no reason why you can’t have your own stock to pick from.
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These are viable methods, but are not as much fun as growing your own from seed. Lemongrass seeds are typical grass seeds, being fine, very light, and with germination rates being quite poor. Lemongrass seeds aren’t expensive though, so this isn’t a big problem. To sow lemongrass, use a good seed quality compost mixed with 20-30% sharp sand to provide the excellent drainage the seeds need to flourish.
Water the pots and leave to drain. Don’t sow lemongrass seeds on a windy day! As I wrote earlier, lemongrass seeds are very light and designed to be taken on the wind. Trying to sow them on a windy day is a sure fire way to lose a load of seeds.
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When you have sprinkled your seeds, cover them with a very fine layer of sandy soil. Covering the seeds helps ensure they are in contact with the moist soil, triggering germination. growfoodguide.com. Keep them in a warm place, like a greenhouse and don’t let the compost dry out. Germination takes anywhere for a couple of weeks to a couple of months.
Lemongrass has a very poor germination rate, so just be happy with the select few plants that have decided to grow. Click here. Unless you have been very lucky, you will be left with just a few young lemongrass plants in each of your pots. If you only have one or two in each pot, there is little need to re-pot your lemongrass at this point.
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Fill the new pot with a similar potting mix to the one it is currently in. Half fill the pot with the sandy mix, then introduce your lemongrass seedling into it, back-filling the pot so that the roots are covered and the new plant is securely anchored in the new pot.
Whilst lemongrass does not have a heavy need for water, it is always a good idea to water a newly potted plant in (gardening). By watering the newly planted lemongrass with a fine hose you will ensure that the soil settles around the roots and air spaces within the soil are kept to a minimum.
Lemongrass is not fast to get growing, but once it has taken hold it will grow very strongly. The spindly little grass shoot you currently own will fill out at the base and you will notice the distinctive stalks begin to fatten up. Lemongrass can grow into a large clump given good growing conditions.
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Look for older stalks that are about a quarter to a half an inch thick. You can cut the stalks out, but I prefer to pull them as this helps leave less damage behind, which can lead to your plant becoming diseased. Don’t worry if you pull out some of the roots or bulbs with your stalk – as long as your plant is big enough, this won’t cause any problems.
Also remove the woodier layers on the bottom of the stalk. You now have a lovely lemongrass stalk to crush and stir your dishes with, or you can freeze it for around 6 months if you don’t want to use it straight away. I find fresh herbs are always the best, so recommend you pick it when you need it (gardening).
Lemongrass has many culinary uses, as well as the oil of the plant being an effective pesticide and a preservative. You are probably familiar with Citronella candles, whose oils derive from lemongrass and can help deter biting insects on sunny evenings outside. In the kitchen, lemongrass comes into its own.