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Herbal teas, growing herbs… I love it all and in this post you’ll read about how to harvest lemongrass. How cool is that, a grass that we can steep and drink or use to flavor our foods. Not only that there are a variety of uses & benefits…
Homegrown herbs can reap a host of benefits for you and your family. From as simple as the beautiful aroma and attraction of bees and butterflies to being able to pluck fresh basil for homemade pizza to cutting and drying your own herbs for a variety of uses & benefits. For years I’ve grown herbs in various ways depending on where I lived and its climate. Most often in pots of differing sizes and styles. Here in Zambia, Africa I can grow them ALL YEAR, what joy! I have a huge washtub and a few pots right outside my kitchen for easy use in cooking – a handful of basil, rosemary or parsley so often come in handy. Chives and celery on the ready to be plunged into soups or added to stir fry’s and sauces.
My lemongrass plant is planted in the back by the verandah – growing blissfully next to some lavender and looking decorative but secretly warding off mosquitos with it’s earthy citrusy aroma and lush grassy stalks waiting to be cut and dried. I love having lemongrass near me. Recently, I cut it back substantially as it was getting really big and I knew then it was tea time.
So, this could not be easier – before I describe and show with photos how to harvest lemongrass, cut, dry and store the lemongrass for its tea benefits, let me talk about other benefits and uses:
FLAVOR….DIGESTION….MASSAGE….to REPEL insects..now WOW those are some awesome uses. As I said above it’s great to plant near to a porch or verandah to silently keep insects away – probably more than one plant needed for that to be effective. But oh so many uses and benefits. And if you want to get this in an oil click here >>> lemongrass oil
There are many lemongrass oil uses:
Where does one get lemongrass if you don’t want to plant it or simply can’t at this time in your life? Good question – check your local veggie section at the grocery store or order dried online here dried lemon grass.
Or let’s cut to the chase and you just want to try the tea first before you go and plant your own then go here >>> lemongrass tea
Otherwise, if you are a gardener or an herbal DIYer then this is how I did it and honestly it was pretty easy:
I cut a good amount then separated the nicer grasses from the less pretty ones altho I believe they hold just as much lemon grassy benefit. But for the sake of this post – the prettier ones won out !
I just snipped them with a scissors – chop chop. Very therapeutic as the aroma was released and ahhhhhh. THEN if I had been using my noggin I would have washed the lemongrass BEFORE snipping which I have done ever after but this time I threw the chopped lemongrass into the sink to rinse and then dried on papertowels……silly me. Anyway, chopped and drying now in the pic below and it does shrink up a tiny bit overnight and then you know its dried well. Careful not to jar any even slightly damp grass as it will mold ( of course that also happened to me………live and learn)
My finished product – I cover it with cheesecloth and put the jar ring around the cloth. Perfect storage and ready for tea. To drink just add desired amount * about a tablespoon* to a favorite mug and pour boiled water over it. Then let it steep at least 10 minutes, remove the grass and sip to your delight. Add honey for sweetness or you know my secret? I LOVE rooibos tea ( click the blue link to try) and I will add one teabag of rooibos and then a tablespoon of dried lemongrass and steep them together..my fave !
So you see how easy it is to in my ” how to harvest lemongrass” tutorial and there are also many lemongrass tea benefits: It’s most common to :
- calm the digestive tract
- aids high blood pressure
- soothes achy joins after workouts
- help to relax the irritations of a common cold
For flavoring dishes, in particular beef, chicken or asian dishes do remove the dried grass before serving as they are quite tough and unpleasant to chew altho it wouldn’t hurt you, maybe be a bit scratchy and uncomfortable and awkward is all.
I recommend trying at least one of the uses of lemongrass. Which one are you interested in? Let me know in the comments below. Maybe you have an additional use – let me know as well.
For other Must Haves from African Garden please check out our Must Have Market <<< click or dive deeper into reading about the how to use and the benefits of essential oils as natural resources. There’s an Essential Oil page <<<for that too. Just some online browsing when you have a few minutes to relax……
Hope you enjoyed learning how to harvest lemongrass 🙂