Lemongrass has the added benefit of being a beautiful ornamental grass, with lots of culinary applications.Find starter plants at your local nursery, or visit a market specializing in Asian cuisine for fresh stems that can be rooted.Lemongrass (Cymbopogon citratus) is native to southeast Asia and is an evergreen perennial in zones 10 and higher.Lemongrass stems freeze well, so feel free to harvest it all at the end of the growing season to save for the winter ahead. .

Does Lemongrass Flower (And What Flowers Look Like

Conversely, you may have been growing this delicious herb as an annual and have never seen any flowers on the plant.However, lemongrass will only reach the flowering stage in tropical or sub-tropical areas where it’s able to survive year-round.However, you are unlikely to see lemongrass in flowers unless you live in an area where it is grown as an ornamental landscaping plant.If left long enough, lemongrass will flower and produce seeds, but it also has an alternative reproduction system.If you gently rub the flowers, you’ll get that lovely lemony fragrance that this plant is well-known for.If you have the opportunity to let a lemongrass plant flower, you should wait for the seed heads to dry completely before harvesting them.If you’re growing your lemongrass to harvest as many of those fragrant stalks as you can, you should not let your plant go to flower.In the case of lemongrass, you’ll find that the stalk will become quite tough and fibrous once it starts to grow taller to produce its flowers.There are gardeners around the world that benefit from new tomato plants in the spring and summer that have self-sown from the previous year’s crop.This type of lemongrass is also edible, and the lemon flavor is enhanced with warm, gingery undertones.It’s also perfect to help prevent soil erosion if you live on a sloping piece of land.If you grow this lovely ornamental plant, you can even harvest a few stalks to use in your cooking, just like you would use the Cymbopogon citratus variety.It has finer blades than the traditional lemongrass but does produce fragrant flowers.This is a lovely clumping grass and comes from the tropical regions of Asia such as Africa, India, and Sri Lanka.If you would like to know more about this fascinating topic, please check out the complete guide I wrote about growing Lemongrass. .

Lemon Grass Growing Guide

Lemongrass is a lovely fragrant plant, that is easy to take care of.Lemongrass tea is said to be a home remedy for certain conditions, because of its aromatic qualities, and its high concentration of antioxidants.While West Indian have thicker greener stocks, and is more commonly used for culinary purposes.Grow lemongrass indoors year round in a very sunny window.If growing in containers, you’ll likely want at least 5 gallons of space for the plant to get to the size you want it to be.The best way to start a lemongrass plant is from root cuttings from well established stalks.Put the bottom inch in a glass of water and set them in a sunny window.In very dry areas, you should mist the leaves with a spray bottle consistently.Harvest entire stalks by slicing them off at soil level, below the swollen ends.You should not break them off by hand, it is better to cut them off, You might need to peel off the outer layer of the stalks before you use them if they are too firm or dry.The pleasing smell of lemongrass works well in back yards, along walkways or driveways, or even in your home. .

Pruning Lemongrass: How to Tame That Wild Thing – Garden Betty

Learn how to give it a haircut with my step-by-step pruning guide, when to cut it back safely, and why it's important to maintain your lemongrass clump.When I propagated lemongrass (purchased from the grocery store) for my garden, I started with only three stalks and planted them in the ground once the roots reached a few inches.I don’t often trim it or divide it, but since it’s spring and lemongrass doesn’t really get going again until summer, it was high time to give it a much-needed haircut.Here’s how you can tell your plant is dormant, plus my simple technique for pruning lemongrass and keeping it healthy all year long.In USDA Hardiness Zones 10 and above, lemongrass slows down in winter and doesn’t put out as many new leaves each week.It’s happiest in a dimly lit room that’s kept at 50°F to 60°F (like a basement or garage), where it stays dormant through the cold, dark days of winter.Special note for overwintering lemongrass: Cut the leaves off to keep the plant tidy and manageable, and water sparingly so it stays alive through the winter months.If you’re in zones 8b to 9, your job is easy: simply pull back the frost blanket (or mulch) and cut down the entire plant to just a couple inches above the tender white part of the stalk, removing all the brown leaves.It feels a bit shocking, I know, but as summer creeps closer, your lemongrass will grow back quickly.Once you’ve got the shape you want, you can finesse the cut and go all Edwards Scissorhands on it, trimming random brown tips here and there until your OCD wears off.(Lemongrass is susceptible to rust, a fungal infection that favors warm temperatures and high moisture.). .

How to Grow and Care for Lemongrass

Common Name Lemongrass Botanical Name Cymbopogon citratus Family Poaceae Plant Type Perennial, annual, herb Mature Size 2-4 ft. tall, 2–3 ft. wide Sun Exposure Full Soil Type Loamy Soil pH Neutral Hardiness Zones 10-11 (USDA) Native Areas Asia Toxicity Toxic to pets.Lemongrass grows with abundance in areas where conditions mimic the warm and humid habitat of its native region.The plant likes lots of heat, light, and moisture: Provide this, and your lemongrass will grow and multiply quickly.The standard "1 inch per week" favored by many garden plants will allow lemongrass to thrive, but it can get by on considerably less.Lemongrass is very frost sensitive, so if you plan to overwinter the plant indoors in pots, bring it inside before temperatures drop into the 40s.There are no named cultivars of lemongrass, but another species in the Cymbopogon genus is worth not—Cymbopogon nardus, also known as citronella grass.This plant is not edible, but it has a pungent but pleasant odor that can be effective as an insect deterrent when grown in pots on patios or decks.Shear the ornamental grass to about 6 inches high at the end of winter, when plants are in their resting phase.Lemongrass plants will rebound quickly and send up new shoots when warm weather returns.Press the seeds lightly into a sterile potting mix, and keep moist until germination, which occurs usually within about 10 to 14 days.In cold climates, you can grow a single root division in a small container in a sunny windowsill to keep the plant going for next season's harvest.Choosing a potting soil premixed with a time-released fertilizer can save you an extra step in feeding your plants.Gardeners in zones 8 and 9 may find that it dies back to the ground in winter, then returns the following spring.In colder regions, it's possible to dig up clumps and plant them in containers to grow indoors in a bright, sunny location for the winter.Symptoms include brown spots or streaks on leaves, leading to plant death. .

Growing Lemon Grass (Cymbopogon citratus)

In the fall, acclimate plants gradually to indoor conditions (you're essentially reversing the hardening-off process) by allowing them to spend days outdoors and bringing them in at night.In winter, set pots of Lemon Grass in your sunniest window, water only when the surface of the soil mix is dry to the touch, and do not fertilize. .

Lemon grass

Lemongrass,, is a perennial grass in the family Poaceae grown for its fragrant leaves and stalks which are used as a flavoring.The grass grows in dense clumps and has several stiff stems and slender blade-like leaves which droop towards the tips.The leaves are blue-green in color, turning red in the Fall and emit a strong lemon fragrance when damaged.Lemongrass may also be referred to as ginger grass or citronella grass and likely originates from Sri Lanka or Malaysia although a wild form of the plant is not known.The stalks (leaf bases) of the plant are commonly used to flavor dishes in Southeast Asian cooking.The tougher leaves are used to flavor dishes but are typically removed before serving.In colder areas, the bulbous shoot base can be saved after harvest and stored for use the following Spring.The bulb can be divided prior to planting by slicing through the rhizome with a sharp spade or trowel.However, younger plants should be kept free by carefully cultivating or hand pulling any weeds from around the plants.Lemongrass can be harvested at any time once the stalks have reached 1.3 cm (0.5 in) in diameter. .


The root and leaf ends of the stalk are trimmed off, and the tough outer layers peeled away, revealing a tender core.Lemongrass is most closely associated with Southeast Asian cooking — especially Thai, Vietnamese, Burmese, Lao, Malaysian and Indonesian cuisines.In other countries, including parts of Africa, Central and South America and the Caribbean, it is more commonly used as a medicinal tea.The herb’s perfumed lemon-lime flavor meshes well with rice dishes, fish and shellfish, poultry (especially chicken), pork, beef and tofu.Lemongrass is also commonly blended with chiles and other seasonings (like fish sauce and ginger) to create a paste for marinating meats or as a flavor base for stir-fries.But to satisfy your intellectual curiosity: the herb is high in manganese, folate, potassium, iron and zinc, and even has some calcium.You may also have citronella candles or spray lying around your backyard to fight mosquitoes – the active ingredient in these products is also made from lemongrass. .

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Growing & Planting Lemongrass

For an easy path to successful growing, look for vigorous young lemongrass plants from Bonnie Plants®, the company that has been helping home gardeners succeed for over a century.Lemongrass likes it hot, so grow it in an area with full sun and fertile, well-drained soil with a pH of 6.5 to 7.0.Kick off the growing season by mixing several inches aged compost or other rich organic matter into your native soil.Lemongrass grows tall, and pots can easily tip in windy weather, so place containers in a slightly protected location.In cold regions, overwinter lemongrass indoors by digging up a few stalks, trimming them down to just a few inches tall, and planting them in smaller pots.Another option is to store a pot of lemongrass, cut down, in a cool, dark place like a basement.Harvest lemongrass for its bulbous stem bases, rich with lemony flavor, or clip leaves for infusing tea and soup stock.Leaves can be bundled and added to the liquid in a teapot or stock pot, then simmered to infuse lemon flavor into the brew.Take the lemongrass base and peel the outer fibrous layer to expose the inner white, reedy part.To make slicing easier, first crush the stem base with the flat blade of a knife.To freeze lemongrass, store thinly sliced pieces in single layers in zipper-seal bags.Leaves make a great addition to marinades and can be steeped in hot water for tea.After use, add leaves to your compost pile or puree them and scatter them in the grass along the edges of a patio or deck to help deter insects.This tropical plant craves moisture, but is quickly killed by heavy soil that makes water puddle. .


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