Edible Landscaping: Lemongrass

Over the weekend, an Orlando-based friend gave me a lovely gift:  A lemongrass plant from their garden! I am very grateful to my friend, who worked very hard to separate out my clump of lemongrass with excellent root structure.  I think it has a good chance of taking root in its new home, almost 300 miles away in Miami!

Lemongrass is a nice ornamental grass. Here is an idea of what lemongrass looks like (photo from Wikipedia):


There are so many types of ornamental grasses I could plant in my yard, but THIS grass happens to be useful, edible, fragrant, and delicious.

I am lucky to have a big yard.  For some time, I’ve been keen on the idea of expanding the number of edible/useful landscape plants in my yard.   I have loads of happy aloe plants, a Meyer lemon tree that is starting to fruit, and banana trees. The problem for me is that I have a limited amount of time to spend in my yard.

Once upon a time, I thought I DID want to spend a lot of time in my yard. The tropical jungle of weeds and pothos were too much for me. Nowadays, I have the BEST lawn guys in the world (I’m creating jobs here, people!).   My lawn crew takes care of the grassy bits, but I’ve learned that anything else I grow needs to be hardy to thrive in my yard, which often only gets watered as much as nature sees fit.

I am crossing my fingers that the lemongrass will fit into that category!   This plant has such a nice, fresh fragrance.  I am looking forward to using the leaves for one of my favorite paleo-friendly Thai dishes: chicken coconut soup.

I’ll post how it goes. In the meantime, I am happy to take any suggestions for good, hardy, edible landscaping plants, particularly ones that are suited for South Florida where the humidity is shockingly high, and plant-blights like aphids, whitefly, and sooty mold abound.

The more things I can figure out how to grow, the more fresh, organic produce I’ll have, virtually for free.   After all, I’m paying good money for my land.  I may as well take full advantage of it!


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