How to Grow Lemongrass

I grew lemongrass as an experiment at home and it’s definitely one of the herbs that I will continue to grow. After four months, my plants now have more fragrant stalks, which I will be harvesting soon.

Lemongrass is usually used in Thai cooking and in hot or iced tea.  If you want to try growing your own, feel free to read the steps below. I hope this helps!

 

WHAT YOU’LL NEED:

  1. Lemongrass stalks
  2. Glass jar
  3. Cups with holes at the bottom
  4. Potting mix / loam soil
  5. Bigger container – I used 8×10” soft pots
  6. Organic fertilizer
  7. Pair of scissors
  8. Gloves
  9. Direct Sunlight – 6 hrs a day
  10. Water

 

HOW TO GROW LEMONGRASS

 

FIRST: CUT 

Cut the bottom part of the lemongrass stalks and place them inside a glass jar with clean water. I used the bottom 5” of the stalks.

 

SECOND: ROOT

Let the stalks root in water for 1-2 weeks, until the roots are about 2” long. I placed them beside a window with sunlight. You’ll notice that the leaves will also start to grow during this time.

 

THIRD: TRANSFER

Transfer the stalks with roots to separate cups of potting mix. Make sure there are small holes at the bottom, for drainage.

 

FOURTH: EXPOSE & MOISTEN

Expose them to direct sunlight and water the cups regularly. Keep the soil moist and don’t let it completely dry out.

 

FIFTH: TRANSFER AGAIN

Once the roots start to grow around the cup, transfer them to their final containers. I placed them in 8×10” soft pots. Also, I used 70% potting mix and 30% loam soil. You can have your own mix as long as the soil is loose.

 

SIXTH: FERTILIZE

Fertilize the soil every month. I used chicken manure, fish/kelp fertilizer, and organic phosphorus fertilizer throughout the growing period.

 

SEVENTH: WAIT

You’ll see more stalks grow beside the original stalk planted. It took me four months to see developed lemongrass stalks — firm stalks with a fragrant smell.

 

ADDITIONAL TIPS:

Make sure to use gloves because the sharp leaves can give you a paper cut. Also, I trimmed off the dried leaves every now and then.

 

I’m still waiting for the current stalks to thicken and for more stalks to grow. Soon, I’ll share a separate post on how to harvest them!

 


 

For more gardening updates and tips, feel free to visit the ff. pages of ANYONE CAN GARDEN. :)

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How To Grow Basil From Seed

It’s been a while since I last shared about growing Basil using cuttings . So many things happened in between! But today, I am excited to show you a recent journey I’ve had in growing this lovely and practical herb from seed.

Even if you don’t have any experience in gardening yet, you can definitely grow Basil! This is one of the easiest herbs to grow and I hope that with this post, I can help you get started. :)

  1. POTTING MIX / LOAM SOIL
  2. FERTILIZER – Such as chicken manure, vermicast, or compost.
  3. BASIL SEEDS – You may start with the Sweet or Genovese Basil variety. This is usually used for pesto and other Italian dishes. But another common type is Thai Basil.
  4. SUNLIGHT – Around 4-6 hours each day
  5. WATER – You may use tap water on a regular basis. But, you can also use rainwater and rice water every now and then, for added nutrients. I use spray bottles during the seedling stage. Then, I use a cup or pail to water them once they’re bigger.
  6. SCISSORS – For pruning as the plant grows
  7. CHOPSTICKS & YARN / STRAW – For support
  8. PLASTIC / WOODEN SPOON – To help transplant seedlings
  9. GLOVES – Since you’ll eventually work with the potting mix
  10. ACCESS TO WIND – To help dry the leaves in case they get wet
  11. CONTAINERS – Egg cartons, small cups, and the final pot (Around 8-10” high and wide will be enough, depending on how big you want the basil to grow.)

 

HOW TO GROW BASIL:

 

STEP ONE: Prepare the Container

I start by adding 1-2 spoons of potting mix inside each egg carton space. The potting mix I use has vermicast, cocopeat, and carbonized rice hull in it. It is very loose and ideal for growing seedlings.

 

STEP TWO: Sow the Seeds and Water Them

I spray the potting mix in the cartoon with water. Then, I lightly sow 1 seed in each hole. Afterwards, I spray water over them again. Also, I place this beside a window with sunlight and water them every morning for 5-7 days.

 

STEP THREE: First Transplant

Seeds first grow cotyledons (initial two leaves / “fake” leaves) in preparation for the seedling. Once you see the true leaves forming (third leaf onwards), you can now transfer these seedlings to bigger cups. Or you can also wait until the plant is 2-3” tall.

ONE SEEDLING PER CUP, PLEASE! :) This will prevent the roots from competing with each other. In the photo below, I eventually separated these two seedlings that sprouted in the cup. I usually transfer them to small plastic cups with small holes at the bottom, for good drainage. You may use a spoon to carefully scoop out the whole seedling as you transfer, without damaging the roots. Also, you may add more potting mix to the cups to help provide support and nutrients.

 

STEP FOUR: Water, Expose to Direct Sunlight, & Fertilize

Continue watering every morning and expose your seedlings to direct sunlight at least 4-6 hours each day. This will help them grow faster. You can also give fertilizer every two weeks. I find that 1-2 tablespoons of chicken manure is enough for each seedling. Also, WATER THE SOIL, not the leaves. This will prevent bacteria in the soil from infecting the leaves, especially when the water splashes on the soil.

 

STEP FIVE: Second or Final Transplant

Depending on the height that you want to maintain, after the seedling grows to 5-6”, you can transfer it to its final pot (or keep transferring to bigger pots as it grows). By this time, a spoon might not be enough to scoop out the seedling. So, you may use your gloves and carefully transfer the seedling to its new home. Add more potting mix to cover the roots and stems. Also, make sure that the bottom leaves aren’t touching the soil.

 

STEP SIX: Support the Plant

Using chopsticks, you can support the plant as it grows. I let the stalks lean on them or I lightly tie them to the sticks using yarn.

 

STEP SEVEN: Prune, Fertilize, and Water

When the plant reaches 8-10” in height, I would recommend for you to prune it since this will help you develop more leaves for harvest. I included a video below on how to prune basil. Also, continue watering every morning and giving fertilizer every two weeks.

Remember, if you want to keep harvesting Basil leaves, the goal is for the plant to become bushy. Not to become tall with thin leaves and flowers.

 

STEP EIGHT: Remove Flowers and Dying Leaves

Flowers are used to collect seeds. But when the Basil plant flowers, it means that the plant is using its energy to produce seeds, not to make leaves. So, make sure to snip off flowers when you see them growing (unless you want to collect seeds).

Also, snip off yellow, brown, or infected leaves when you see them, so the plant’s energy can focus on the healthier ones. This will prevent diseases from spreading too!

 

STEP NINE: Keep Harvesting

This will encourage the plant to continue producing leaves. But, make sure NOT to harvest more than 1/3 of the plant, so that it won’t have a hard time recovering.

 

STEP TEN: Enjoy Growing!

Aside from enjoying the process of seeing plants grow, I’ve been having a blast learning from this too, both in my successful attempts and in my failures (or what I call “experiments”) along the way.

 

I hope this detailed post helps you get a clearer picture of how to plant Basil seeds. If you have more questions, feel free to let me know in the comments below. Or you can also visit my gardening page “ANYONE CAN GARDEN” on Facebook and Instagram, where I post more about lessons learned. :)

How to Grow Basil from Cuttings

A few months ago, some of our old Basil plants showed signs of deterioration. They kept producing flowers and weak branches and leaves. We still tried to revive the plants, but after doing some research, I decided to try growing new plants from their cuttings and seeds too.

From the existing plants we have, I harvested Basil flowers (which contained seeds) and I got a few cuttings to propagate. In another post, I’ll share how the seeds turned out. But for now, here are some tips on how to grow Basil from cuttings.

 

FIRST: SNIP

Using a pair of scissors, cut 4-6 inches of stems with leaves. Make sure that there aren’t flowers growing on the stems. These stems will least likely produce its own roots, because having flowers is a sign that the plant is reaching the end of its life and is preparing for seed production.


SECOND: TRIM

Remove the leaves at the bottom part of the stems (2 inches from the bottom).

 

THIRD: WATER

Add clean water in a glass jar, enough to cover the bottom 2 inches of the stems.

 

FOURTH: REFRESH

Place the Basil cuttings in the glass jar. Every two days, change the water to make sure the cuttings stay fresh.

 

FIFTH: TRANSPLANT

Once the cuttings produce long roots (maybe 3-4 inches), you may now transfer them to small containers with loose potting medium. This step can be stressful for the cuttings, so make sure to carefully handle the roots and to add water and fertilizer to the soil after transplanting them.

 

SIXTH: TRANSPLANT AGAIN 🌱

After a few weeks, the cuttings will begin to grow taller and have more leaves. During this stage, you can transfer the cuttings to bigger containers with loose potting medium, so they can continue to expand.

It’s amazing how we can produce new and healthy Basil plants from dying ones. I will still take care of our old Basil plants, but they’ll be used mainly for seed production. On my next gardening blog post, I’ll be sharing tips on how to grow Basil from seeds.

Are you growing anything now? Feel free to share your adventures too!🌱

 


For more gardening updates and tips, feel free to visit the ff. pages of ANYONE CAN GARDEN. :)

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How to Harvest Basil Seeds

A few days ago, I tried propagating our dying Basil plant to help produce more seedlings. One of the three cuttings had dried Basil flowers on top which was great because they contained seeds. Ever since we started growing Basil at home, we have always used seedlings bought from gardening shops. However, this time, I wanted to try growing them from seeds.

If you have Basil plants at home, you can try these three simple steps too! :)

HOW TO HARVEST BASIL SEEDS:

1. Wait for the plant’s flowers to dry up and turn brown. This is the best time to harvest the seeds.

2. From the main plant, cut the stem of the dried flowers and then, carefully remove each bud.

3. Using your fingers, gently crush the dried flowers until the black seeds fall out.

Once you have the seeds, you can already plant them in your potting soil where the seedling will grow. Or you can also store them in a sealed plastic bag or glass container kept in a dark room, for future use.

I look forward to seeing these new Basil seeds grow into healthy and fruitful plants in the coming months. Let me know if you’re growing these too!

 

You can also check the video below on how to harvest the seeds. Enjoy! Happy gardening!

For more gardening updates and tips, feel free to visit the ff. pages of ANYONE CAN GARDEN. :)

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