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As we head into September and officially Autumn from towards the end of the month, there’s still plenty to be doing in the garden. I am really keen on fully enjoying each season and have no intention of ‘clearing up’ or doing any autumn jobs just yet as it’s still summer. Gardening teaches us patience and not rushing through the seasons is a good test of it! There are still plenty of crops, seeds to sow and sunny days in the garden surrounded by fragrant herbs.
Of all the herbs in the garden, Lemongrass is by far one of my absolute favourites. It can be grown very successfully in the UK in the right conditions. I love the foliage because as it gets taller it arches over in a bright green colour, very elegantly.
Mine sits in a herb bed with mint (which is in a pot sunken into the raised bed), parsley, an abundance of basil and pineapple sage. It’s an eclectic mix of nutrition and flavours which I use for teas and other concoctions! I let some flower because it becomes a magnet for pollinators and after flowering in the summer, I cut them back for a second flush.
Lemongrass is grown for the base of the stems which is used in many recipes and adds the perfect zing. If you grow it in a container, it can then be moved in before the first frosts and moved back outside again after the last frosts in spring. It’s extremely unlikely to survive a cold winter outside so pop it in your Rhino Greenhouse to keep it safe from the elements, reduce watering and as the foliage turns brown, cut back to 10cm.
You can start Lemongrass off from seed in spring, eventually potting up in 20cm pots or buy plants already established. If you are able to buy stems from the shop, these can even be rooted in a pot of soil. When you want to harvest it, take from the very base and use up to 10cm from the bottom. If you have a good clump and want to use a few stems, it can be easily split and repotted. Stems can easily be added to a stir fry for a lemony twist.