Lemon grass

A mosquito-repellent, and a must for Asian cooking!
Common name : Lemon grass
Scientific name : Cymbopogon citratus
Family : Poaceae
Category : Perennials
Type of plant : Perennial
Cymbopogon citratus - lemon grass or oil gras - is a tropical plant in the family Poaceae from South Asia. It is a frost-sensitive perennial grass growing to 80 cm tall.

Sowing & planting

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D

Flowering

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O
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D

Caracteristics

Exposition
Water needs
Granulom├ętrie plants.granulometry_4
Frost-resistance Medium
Zone USDA 10a
Height 70 - 80
pH 6 - 7

Identify my lemon grass

Cultivated lemongrass is represented only by one species, Cymbopogon citratus. It is part of the Poaceae family. Its leaves are long, with acute ends, and mesure 3 cm wide and 80 cm long. They are leathery and sharp, organized in basal rosette. It's not obvious to recognize it without checking to smell, as it looks like many other grasses. Flowering occurs from August to October, brown in color, and organized into terminal panicles. Flowering is rare under our latitudes.

Plant my lemon grass

Lemongrass likes a rich and well-drained soil. Plant in a pot of at least 5 liters, like a planter or a pot, in a rich potting soil. The soil must remain well moist the first weeks after planting. In open ground, wait until the last risk of frost is finished and the soil is warmed up. Prepare holes about 20 cm deep (depending on the size of the root ball). Incorporate potting soil into it. Plant and tamp the roots to avoid air pockets around the roots, and cover the root ball slightly. Pour plenty of water to facilitate rooting.

Repot my lemon grass

Repot each year by changing some of the soil, or even a slightly larger pot.

Fertilize my lemon grass

Natural Fertilization: put some compost around the plant, and lightly scratch the top to incorporate. Otherwise, use a fertilizer " special geraniums" every week from April to August.

Water my lemon grass

Lemongrass grown in pots or planters should be watered when the top of the soil dries. Prefer watering in the morning. For plants indoors, be careful not to wet the leaves (this favors mushrooms), and provide them with a dish under the pot. For open soil crops, watering is done only the first weeks after sowing and planting. Watering after sowing should be gentle. Watering after planting / transplanting is done with a spray or watering cannula, taking care not to wet the leaves.

Propagate my lemon grass

Propagate by tuft division from May to August, as lemongrass does not flower in our latitudes. Dig up your plant, and take the lateral seedlings with your fingers or a with a fork. Do not break the roots too much. Plant the seedlings in a mixture of sand, earth and potting soil, and water well. That's all.

Put outside my lemon grass

You can take out your lemon grass for the summer season, and place it outside in the sun, as soon as the last risk of frost is over - from mid-May.

Shelter my lemon grass

Lemongrass is frosty !! Bring it in before the frosts, to be wintered in a veranda, under a cold greenhouse or some other cool place - 10 ┬░ C minimum - and bright.

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