Growing Lemongrass Indoors: Tips On Planting Lemongrass In Pots

Small Potted Lemongrass
(Image credit: dj_aof)

If you’ve ever cooked Asian cuisine, particularly Thai, there’s a good chance you’ve bought lemongrass from the grocery store. Did you know that if you’ve bought lemongrass once, you should never have to buy it again? Lemongrass is one of those wonder plants: It tastes great, it smells great, and when you cut it, the plant grows right back. As a great bonus, you can grow it straight from the stalks you buy in the grocery store. Keep reading to learn about care for indoor lemongrass plants and how to grow lemongrass indoors.

Can You Grow Lemongrass Indoors?

Can you grow lemongrass indoors? Absolutely! In fact, growing lemongrass indoors is a necessity in colder climates, as lemongrass grown outdoors will not survive the winter. If you can find lemongrass for sale in your grocery store, buy some. Pick the stalks with the greenest centers and the bulbs still intact on the bottom. Place them, bulb down, in a glass with a few inches (8 cm.) of water. Let them sit for a few weeks, changing the water frequently, until new roots begin to grow. If you’re growing lemongrass indoors, you’ll need to pick the right container. Lemongrass spreads and grows to be a few feet high (1 m.), so choose a container that’s as big as you can stand to have in your house. Make sure it has ample drainage holes. Fill the container with potting mix and water until it’s moist but not wet. Poke a hole in the center of the potting mix. Trim off the tops of the stalks and set one stalk, gently, in the hole. Fill the potting mix in around it and set the plant in a sunny place to grow.

How to Grow Lemongrass Indoors

Care for indoor lemongrass plants is easy and productive. When planting lemongrass in pots, one of the best things you can do for your plant is to harvest it frequently, as this encourages new growth. Harvesting involves cutting it with a sharp knife flush to the surface of the soil. You’ll have a whole stalk to cook with or dry, and the bulb will immediately produce new growth. Keep your pot in full sun – if it’s warm enough, set it outside. Water and fertilize frequently. If it starts to get too big for its pot, you can transplant up or harvest a few stalks, bulb and all, to cook with or transplant elsewhere.

Liz Baessler
Senior Editor

The only child of a horticulturist and an English teacher, Liz Baessler was destined to become a gardening editor. She has been with Gardening Know how since 2015, and a Senior Editor since 2020. She holds a BA in English from Brandeis University and an MA in English from the University of Geneva, Switzerland. After years of gardening in containers and community garden plots, she finally has a backyard of her own, which she is systematically filling with vegetables and flowers.