Cymbopogon citratus Ht. 1m
Native to Indonesia widely grown in South East Asia and Australasia and belongs to the grass family, it’s wonderful aroma comes from the citronella oil it contains, which is why it is widely used as an insect repellent and in perfumes.
It loves a sunny, warm, humid environment and a moist, rich soil and will quickly spread if given enough room. Grow some in pots and bring indoors, so as you brush by it releases it’s wonderful fragrance.
The essential oil can cause skin irritation. An infusion or compress is a good antiseptic for superficial wounds. It,s also good for acne, coughs and colds. In South East Asia it is brewed as a tea to alleviate nausea and aid sleep.
It will not tolerate temperatures below 10 degrees Celsius, so needs to be brought inside during the winter or grown from seed each year.