Last updated on September 26th, 2022 at 09:33 am
Do you have Lemongrass in your garden? If you do, it may be because of its excellent properties as a tea herb and as a spice. Apart from the fact that it is an ornamental plant grown in gardens, it has a lot of medicinal and industrial uses.
Nonetheless, knowing whether Lemongrass can spread is important because as you grow it in gardens and indoors, its spread may pose issues to management.
Hence the question, do Lemongrass spread? Lemongrass grows at a rapid rate, spreading and filling a planting spot or bed. It can grow up three to six feet tall and three feet wide in just one growing season.
Is Lemongrass Invasive?
An invasive plant species is a species of plant that is not native to a particular ecosystem where it is found and whose appearance causes or is most likely to cause economic, environmental, and ecological harm.
Grasses mostly have the nature of spreading by runners, which makes them invasive, but this is not the case with Lemongrass because it forms as a clump or mass.
Another reason we say that Lemongrass is not an invasive plant is that most invasive plants negatively alter the environment, which is something that Lemongrass does not do.
Instead, Lemongrass does have beneficial effects like serving as a mosquito repellant where it is grown.
Other characteristics or attributes of invasive plants lacking in Lemongrass are high dispersal ability and phenotype elasticity.
Lemongrass does not have high dispersal ability because they are adapted very much to the grassland and can only be introduced to the homes of those ready to provide it with the necessary conditions it needs.
Furthermore, dispersal of seeds by insects and animals is one of the most effective natural forms of seeds dispersal but Lemongrass prevents it from happening because of its citrusy scented oil that can repel insects, thus preventing insect dispersal.
Phenotype plasticity simply means the ability of the plant growth form to suit current conditions. Like most plants,
Lemongrass needs soil, water, and sunlight. Although it does well in a variety of soil types, it is susceptible to cold. Extreme freezing may result in frost damage of leaves and death of its roots; this is why it grows in the form of clusters.
For this reason, Lemongrass is restricted to the tropical grassland where it is usually hot and sunny, with scattered rainfall and scarce trees for complete exposure to sunlight and rainfall as much as possible.
Do Lemongrass Multiply?
The multiplication of Lemongrass is another aspect of cultivation you would need to know about if you plan to introduce it to your garden.
And this aspect has to do with learning how to grow Lemongrass; all you need is to get an established or well-functioning or thriving bunch. So yes, Lemongrass does multiply.
In growing Lemongrass, there are certain factors you should consider. For example, sunlight; since Lemongrass is a tropical herb, it needs access to a lot of sunlight.
Another factor is water; Lemongrass grows best with abundant moisture but not in very wet soil. Fertilizer is also a factor since Lemongrass is a grassy plant and needs nitrogen-rich fertilizer for growth. Therefore, it would be best to apply a slow-release 6-4-0 fertilizer.
Furthermore, the soil is the final and primary factor to consider. If you use clay soil, you should apply much compost and rotted manure to improve its drain ability.
Also, it would be best to address the pH of the soil if it turns out to be unsuitable because Lemongrass thrives better in slightly acidic soil.
It is also essential to grow Lemongrass at the right time, usually in spring, just after the last frost when the temperature becomes warmer. There are several ways of growing Lemongrass which could be growing from seeds, divisions, and cuttings;
In this method of growing Lemongrass, seeds are first planted in a small light container and watered with eco-seaweed.
Germination usually occurs within 14-25 days, and then you should transfer the plant into individual pots. At 15-20 cm growth height, Lemongrass can be grown indoors in a bigger pot or outdoors in the garden.
This is another way of growing Lemongrass. You can carry it out by totally bringing out the clump of the Lemongrass or by removing it partly before splitting it into smaller sections.
And no matter the choice you make, it is imperative that the smaller section still holds a good amount of roots, then ensure to remove the dead leaves and remove stalks, cutting it to about half the size.
Planting by cuttings is done with Lemongrass that has as much bottom bulb attached to it as possible, peeling off the back layer from the stalk and rooting the stalk in water for weeks.
But once the roots begin to form and there is also sprouting of leaves, you should plant the Lemongrass with the roots below the soil surface.
When you have done any of the following and achieved a bunch (clump), then multiplying Lemongrass with any of the above growing methods is possible.
Do Lemongrass Spread On Its Own?
After you may have planted Lemongrass in your garden, just leaving it alone without any other effort, it would still spread on its own.
You can also aid in its spread by supplying water, sunlight and fertilizer, and a reasonable soil mixture requirement. Nonetheless, Lemongrass can spread open on its own if allowed so vast covering a lot of space.
If you want to, you can control an unwanted spread by pruning; some gardeners prefer to do it after a few years, while others choose to do it regularly. But the choice is yours to make.
An advantage of pruning is that it makes the garden look attractive and presentable.
If you neglect to prune, you will end up with your Lemongrass spreading faster than you had ever expected it to. You will have a tough job to handle and an unattractive garden in your house and disturbing other plants in your garden.
In summary, Lemongrass is a garden grass that spreads by growing three to six feet tall and three feet wide.
Also, Lemongrass is not at all invasive due to its nature of growing in a clump form.
Furthermore, the fact that it lacks some of the attributes that invasive plant species have, such as runners, high dispersal ability, and phenotypic plasticity makes it a non-invasive plant.
I have also clarified that Lemongrass can multiply once you have planted it by various growing methods like seeds, divisions, or cuttings.
Finally, Lemongrass spread on its own. But you can also provide support for its spread by making sure all growth requirements are met.
But if the spread becomes disturbing, you can control it. The easiest way to control an unwanted spread of Lemongrass is by pruning.