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WEST INDIAN LEMONGRASS GROWING INFORMATION
© Frances Michaels
BOTANICAL NAME: Cymbopogon citratus
Lemongrass syn. Takrai (Thailand) syn. Serai (Malaysia) syn. Sereh
(Indonesia) syn. Tanglad (Philippines)
Poaceae previously Graminae
It grows in grass-like clumps to 1 m tall. Lemongrass is adapted to hot wet summers and dry warm winters, is
drought tolerant and will grow on a wide range of soils but prefers rich, moist loams. It dislikes wet feet. If
it is damaged by frost in cooler areas, the tops should not be cut until all danger of frost has passed. This
helps to protect the centre of the plant from further cold damage.
a good source of vitamin A, the leaves can be used for tea, the stem bases
are used in curries and Thai cooking.
it can be cut continuously for mulch during the warmer months. As an added
advantage it will have some pest repellent properties.
it can be planted on the contour on steep banks to control
useful also as a barrier to running grasses around vegetable gardens.
It rarely flowers and is usually propagated by division.
Recommended planting time:
plant spring in cooler areas; in tropical areas
plant during the wet season.
plant rhizomes at a spacing of 1 m, with .5 m between rows.
Harvesting for oil distillation begins when the clumps are 4-8 months old, it is subsequently harvested every
3-4 months, and this continues for about 4 years. The fresh grass yields 0.2-0.4% oil, giving 40-112 kg of
Not to NORFOLK ISLAND, NT, SA, TAS or WA
SORRY but due to quarantine restrictions between Australian States no plants at all can be ordered
by residents of Norfolk Island
. These restrictions are very important as they prevent
the spread of plant pests and diseases. No potatoes, garlic, shallots, strawberries or tubestock
can be sent to South Australia
. No tubestock can be sent to
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