What to use it for?
Lemongrass (Cymbopogon citratus), as its name suggests, is a lemony-tasting, grassy herb. Thai and other Asian recipes, as well as light summer recipes, incorporate lemongrass into enticing combinations of flavors. You can find many recipes with Lemongrass on this blog! Lemongrass is hardy and an uncomplicated addition to a container herb garden. You don’t even have to seek out a special cultivar because growing lemongrass in a pot is practically effortless. As long as you can find it at your local grocery store, you can soon be growing your own fresh lemongrass for your kitchen.
How to grow your own lemongrass!
- Buy a stalk of lemongrass from your local supermarket or farmers market. Look for at least a little green in the center layers of the stalk and an intact root end that resembles the root end of an onion. The greener, the better!
- Peel off the outermost, dry layers of leaves from the lemongrass stalk. Leave the root end alone. Place the stalk in a glass jar of water with the root end submerged in about 5 cm of water. Place the glass in a sunny window. Change the water every day for about three or four weeks until roots grow to 5 cm.
- Fill a container almost to the top with sterile commercial potting soil. The container must have drainage holes and be at least 20 to 25 cm deep and 25 to 30 cm in diameter. Mix some water with the potting soil so it is moist but not wet. Make a hole in the center of the soil.
- Set the rooted lemongrass stalk into the hole gently, taking care not to break the fragile roots. Fill in the hole around it with potting soil and pat firm. Set the pot in a sunny location.
- Water the lemongrass as often as necessary to keep the soil moist but not wet. In extremely hot or windy weather, water more often because container plants dry out more quickly than plants in the ground.
- 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.
- Fertilize the plant with a water-soluble fertilizer designed for herbs and vegetables. Follow the label directions for mixing and application. Because you will be eating the lemongrass from the pot, use an organic fertilizer.