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Description

How to Grow Lemongrass

Lemongrass grows with abundance in areas where conditions mimic the tropical habitat of their origin. Plants like lots of heat, light, and moisture: Provide this, and your lemongrass will grow and multiply quickly.

Light

In its native habitat, lemongrass grows in full sun, even in hot climates. At least six hours of direct sun per day will meet the plants’ energy needs. Plants growing in shade will be sparse and may attract pests.

Soil

Lemongrass plants prefer rich, loamy soil. You can create this ideal soil by adding several different soil amendments: compost, manure, and leaf mold are all enriching additives that you can add at planting time.

Water

Unlike some ornamental grasses, lemongrass is not a drought-tolerant plant. Keep the roots constantly moist for best plant health. A 3-inch layer of mulch can help conserve soil moisture and will enrich the soil as it breaks down.

Temperature and Humidity

As tropical plants, lemongrass thrives in hot, steamy climates. The time for growing lemongrass outdoors is similar to the timing for tomato planting: when night temperatures are in the 60s, it’s time to plant. Lemongrass is very frost sensitive, so if you plan to overwinter the plant indoors, bring it inside before temperatures get into the 40s.

Fertilizer

As a grassy plant, lemongrass needs a nitrogen-rich fertilizer for its best growth. You can use a slow-release 6-4-0 fertilizer that will feed lemongrass throughout the growing season. You can also water your lemongrass plants with manure tea, which will add trace nutrients.

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