This tall, clump-forming perennial grass grows up to 1m (3ft) with fibrous, sharp-edged leaves. Its bulbous base has a citrus scent and is creamy yellow in sections. It can be easily grown by immersing the stalks ends in water until roots appear, lemongrass can then be planted in the garden or in a pot. It grows readily in almost any soil.
Lemongrass oil is used in perfumes, cosmetics, shampoo and soaps and is an effective remedy for irregular bowel movements, gastric irritability and be used for arrest vomiting. Other medicinal uses and bacteral infections. The leaves can also be used for its anti-hypertensive and anti- inflammatory.
Lemongrass can eaten raw, bruised and added whole to curry dishes; used as skewers for satay or sliced before pounded into a paste. In Malaysia, lemongrass is a key ingredient in Nyonya cooking. It is also used widely in Thai curries and soups.