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Lemon Grass

Cymbopogon citratus

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Lemon Grass (Cymbopogon citratus) at Platt Hill Nursery

Lemon Grass

Lemon Grass

(Photo courtesy of NetPS Plant Finder)

Height:  4 feet

Spread:  30 inches

Sunlight:  full sun 

Hardiness Zone:  (annual)

Description:

A frost-tender clumping perennial grass that is widely used in Southeast Asian cuisine for its lemony flavoring; it is also an impressive ornamental grass with gracefully arching, strap-like leaves that are light green; will grow near black walnuts

Edible Qualities

Lemon Grass is an annual herb that is typically grown for its edible qualities, although it does have ornamental merits as well. The fragrant grassy light green leaves with hints of gray can be harvested at any time in the season. The leaves have a zesty taste.

The leaves are most often used in the following ways:

  • Cooking
  • Seasoning
  • Freezing
  • Tea

Planting & Growing

Lemon Grass will grow to be about 4 feet tall at maturity, with a spread of 30 inches. Although it's not a true annual, this fast-growing plant can be expected to behave as an annual in our climate if left outdoors over the winter, usually needing replacement the following year. As such, gardeners should take into consideration that it will perform differently than it would in its native habitat.

This plant is quite ornamental as well as edible, and is as much at home in a landscape or flower garden as it is in a designated herb garden. It should only be grown in full sunlight. It does best in average to evenly moist conditions, but will not tolerate standing water. It is not particular as to soil pH, but grows best in rich soils. It is highly tolerant of urban pollution and will even thrive in inner city environments. Consider applying a thick mulch around the root zone in winter to protect it in exposed locations or colder microclimates. This species is not originally from North America. It can be propagated by division.

Lemon Grass is a good choice for the edible garden, but it is also well-suited for use in outdoor pots and containers. Because of its height, it is often used as a 'thriller' in the 'spiller-thriller-filler' container combination; plant it near the center of the pot, surrounded by smaller plants and those that spill over the edges. It is even sizeable enough that it can be grown alone in a suitable container. Note that when growing plants in outdoor containers and baskets, they may require more frequent waterings than they would in the yard or garden.

 
 
Hardiness Zone Plant Height Minimum Sunlight
Characteristics
Massing  Garden  Herb  Container 
Applications
Foliage Color 
Ornamental Features

This Plant Finder tool is an online catalog representing many of the varieties that we carry over the course of the season, and is intended for informational purposes only. Inventory varies seasonally, so we cannot guarantee that every plant will be in stock at all times - please contact your nearest Platt Hill Nursery store for current availability. It does not include our entire inventory of plants, so be sure to visit us to see varieties that may not be represented on this list.



Bloomingdale: 222 W Lake St, Bloomingdale, IL 60108

Carpentersville: 2400 Randall Rd, Carpentersville, IL 60110

Christmas Hours: November 26 - December 10; Monday - Friday: 9am - 8pm; Saturday & Sunday: 9am - 6pm

Christmas Eve: 9am - 3pm; CLOSED Christmas; New Year's Eve: 9am - 3pm;  CLOSED New Year's Day

Dec. 11th - April 14th Hours: Monday - Saturday: 9am - 6pm; Sunday 10am - 5pm

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