“Lissome grass, so fresh and free,
You make me want to drink your tea!”
Lemongrass is a leafing plant (herb?) that is used for medicinal and culinary purposes.
SEASONS: Lemongrass is a perennial. It is well suited to the tropics and can be sown and grown through the year in Mumbai.
PROPAGATING: This plant is propagated from shoots/rooting stalks. Re-plant shoots from another lemongrass bush, or propagate from fresh, unrefrigerated lemongrass stalks (not leaves) sold at the grocery store. Strip the stalks of excess leaves and trim down considerably. Place these trimmed stalks in a glass of water in a sunny spot for a few days. Some of them may have already developed tiny roots, and even if not, they will start rooting in a few days. When roots are a couple of inches long, the stalk is ready for planting out.
GERMINATING: Not relevant to Lemongrass.
PLANTING OUT: Plant out your rooting lemongrass stalks in acidic, highly-composted and manured, moisture retentive or peaty soil, in direct sunlight/semi-shade. Plant stalks in little bunches helps them support each other and the chance of survival increases. Water well. Lemongrass loves water and enjoys getting its feet wet and mucky. It is known to thrive in bogs, so there is no danger of over-watering this plant. Lemongrass will grow well on open plots or in containers.
NURTURING: This is a very easy plant to grow and requires little nurturing besides deep and regular watering, and occasional pruning of dead leaves. It does not get preyed on by insects or other pests. Keep adding nutrient-rich compost and manure to your mix to feed your plant.
HARVESTING: Harvest leaves as the plant grows. Lemongrass will replicate itself and you will soon have lots to share with friends and family. This is a long-lasting plant and you will not need to uproot it annually – just keep growing it!
A fully-grown lemongrass plant, grown from one stalk, 4 months later
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