Alert: Limited Online Availability

Now that summer is here, we have limited our stock for online purchase. Find Monrovia plants at your local garden center. Pre-order for 2023 will be available later this year. ×

We no longer grow this plant.
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Cymbopogon citratus

Highly popular in Thai and other southeast Asian cuisines, this beautiful grass also adds beauty to the garden, forming a clump of graceful, arching leaves within one season. Foliage emits an lemony fragrance. The bulbous portion of the stem is used in cooking. Well-known as an insect repellent (citronella).
There are very few rules in gardening, but perhaps the most important one is to work within your zone. Choosing plants that grow and thrive in your particular climate is the very first step toward having a beautiful garden . Learn More

Your climate might be too cold for this plant:


Full sun, Partial sun

Requires regular watering- weekly or more often in extreme heat.


Due to the seasonal nature of plants, availability at your local garden center is not guaranteed. Give them a call before visiting.

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LoreWidely grown in southeast Asia, this frost-tender clumping grass is a key aromatic seasoning in Cambodian, Laotian, Vietnamese and Thai cuisine. Though tough and basically inedible, the bulbous portion at the bottom of the stem is what is traditionally used in cooking, providing the distinctive flavor essential to many dishes. It is pounded or cut into slices and used to flavor meat, poultry, stews and seafood. Sections of the mature leaves are also dried to flavor teas, soups or stews. The extracted oils of lemon grass have been traditionally used in herbal medications and to create perfumes, as well as being used as an insect repellent (citronella).
Average Size at Maturity2-4' tall x 2-3'wide
Bloom TimePrized for foliage; rarely flowers..
Design IdeasPlant alone as a specimen or mass to create a lovely middle of the border texture. Grow in tubs or containers on patio or in the kitchen garden.
Deciduous/ EvergreenSemi-evergreen
Foliage ColorLight Green
Garden StyleContemporary, Rustic, Tropical
Landscape UseBorder, Container, Erosion Control
Light NeedsFull sun, Partial sun
Special FeatureEasy Care, Edible, Gift Plant, Sustainable
Water NeedsModerate
Watering NeedsRequires regular watering- weekly or more often in extreme heat.

Easily grown in humus-rich, evenly moist, well-drained soils and highly adaptable. Harvest stalks late summer to fall. Use caution with sharp leave edges. Often root-hardy to zone 8b. Container plants may be overwintered indoors in a sunny location. Spreading clumps may be divided in early spring.

This Plant's Growing Zones: 9-11

USDA Cold Hardiness Zone Map

Your USDA Cold Hardiness Zone:

Your climate may be too cold for this plant