Hedonisia Hawaii Eco-Community Vacation Rentals and Green Hostel!

Hedonisia Hawaii Botanical Plant Inventory

Citronella

1) General Information:

 

!

a) Scientific name: Pelargonium citrosum

Citronella Leaf Hawaii

Citronella Leaf Hawaii

b) Region of Origin: Tropical East Asia

c) Type: Beautiful & Useful

d) General History: Citronella grass originated in southeast Asia but is now grown deliberately, or has naturalized, throughout much of the tropics. It is commercially grown in many areas for extraction of its aromatic oil, and is also planted as a garden or landscape ornamental in warm climates.

2) Plant Uses:

Citronella Plant

Citronella Plant

a) As Food: In foods and beverages, citronella oil is used as a flavoring. 
b) As Medicine: 
In addition to antibacterial properties, Citronella serves as an anti-fungal and antiviral agent. The anti-fungal properties found in citronella make it a popular herb for treating intestinal parasites when used under the supervision of a certified herbalist or health professionals. In Chinese medicine, Citronella is prescribed to treat aches and pains in muscles and joints. When added to a carrier oil, three drops of citronella oil massaged into the muscle will help alleviate aches.Citronella oil can help treat oily skin. After washing the face with a mild cleanser, add a dab of oil to a cotton ball and gently swipe it across the problem areas. The antibacterial properties present in citronella will also help to clear up blemishes and remove dirt and debris clogging the pores. For sweaty feet, a swipe from a citronella cloth or a spritz of spray will alleviate perspiration and leave the feet feeling cool and refreshed.

c) Other Uses: Citronella oil is a widely used ingredient in natural insect repellents. Although commonly used as a spray, these repellents also come in pure oils and cream form. A cotton ball soaked in citronella oil and placed on a windowsill can help keep mosquitoes and other insects from entering the home. Citronella oil diffusers work well when placed outside on a dining table. Citronella-based collars also protect pets from fleas and ticks, as does spraying the oil directly on an animal’s coat.

3) Growing Instructions

a) Growing: Citronella grass can also be grown as an annual grass where the growing season is both warm enough and long enough. As it grows, the grass forms a clump often as wide as it is tall, and can reach from 5 to 6 feet (1.5 to 1.8 m) in optimal growing conditions. Citronella grass typically requires at least 30 inches (76 cm) of water per year to thrive.

b) Best time to Harvest: Plants respond well to pruning, so do not be afraid to cut branches to include in summer bouquets, especially if you are dining outdoors. The fragrance will be a welcome addition, blending with more floral scents

c) Sunlight Requirements: Full Shade, Partial Shade, Full Sunlight

d) Soil Requirements: Mosquito plants are tolerant of a wide range of well-drained soils, however, moderately rich, moist soil will produce the best growth.

e) Propagation: Cutting, Division, Grafting, Seed, Separating

f) Controlling Spread: /

g) Difficulties with this plant: You will know if plant does not have enough light. It will stretch and fall over, having long stems between each leaf. Make a mental note to give it more sun next year and cut back long, lanky branches to bring it back into shape this season.

h) History of this Plant at Hedonisia: Garden D