Plants & Phavorites – Lemon Grass

Summer is at an end. I thought it would be good idea throughout this week to take time for some reflections on the garden…successes and failures, and make note of what I want to plant again next year.

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At the top of my list is Lemon Grass. I found this plant in my local Amish Market. I must have planted it in the perfect spot this year for it has thrived and grown to about a thirty inch height in the afternoon sunshine.

I found some terrific information on WebMD on the benefits of Lemon Grass.

“Lemongrass is a plant. The leaves and the oil are used to make medicine.

Lemongrass is used for treating digestive tract spasms, stomachache, high blood pressure, convulsions, pain, vomiting, cough, achy joints (rheumatism), fever, the common cold, and exhaustion. It is also used to kill germs and as a mild astringent.
Some people apply lemongrass and its essential oil directly to the skin for headache, stomachache, abdominal pain, and muscle pain.
By inhalation, the essential oil of lemongrass is used as aromatherapy for muscle pain.
In food and beverages, lemongrass is used as a flavoring. For example, lemongrass leaves are commonly used as “lemon” flavoring in herbal teas.
In manufacturing, lemongrass is used as a fragrance in soaps and cosmetics. Lemongrass is also used in making vitamin A and natural citral.

How does it work?
Lemongrass might help prevent the growth of some bacteria and yeast. Lemongrass also contains substances that are thought to relieve pain, reduce fever, stimulate the uterus and menstrual flow, and have antioxidant properties.” ~ Webmd.com

There are some side effects and dangers when using Lemon Grass –
LEMON GRASS IS UNSAFE DURING PREGNANCY – It can start menstrual flow.
From my own experience I can caution you to be aware of the sharp edges when you gather the grass. I experienced a painful cut, pretty much like a deep paper cut while picking the grass to use in tea.

“Lemongrass is an aromatic storehouse of essential nutrients providing a wide array of health benefits. It is a source of essential vitamins such as vitamin A, B1 (thiamine), B2 (riboflavin), B3 (niacin) B5 (pantothenic acid), B6 (pyridoxine), folate and vitamin C. It also provides essentil minerals such as potassium, calcium, magnesium, phosphorous, manganese, copper, zinc and iron, which are required for the healthy functioning of the human body. It offers no harmful cholesterol or fats.” ~ Organicfacts.net

I was astounded by all the benefits of this plant as I researched facts for this post. Lemon grass is widely available as an ingredient in herbal teas. Check out the labels in the tea section and drink more tea this winter!
Benefits of Lemon Grass

Before the grass falls victim to Autumn frosts, I plan on gathering and drying more of the grass to use throughout winter. I have had great results harvesting the grass, gently washing off any garden debris, cutting into 1/2 – 3/4 inch lengths, and drying for a day or two in the heat of my car.

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