Cymbopogon flexuosus

Family: Poaceae (Gramineae)

Method of extraction: Lemongrass is steam distilled from the fresh or partly dried leaves of C.citratis or C.flexuosus.

Typical Chemical Composition: (C.fluxuosus)   myrcene (0.46%); limonene (2.42%); linalool (1.34%); citronellal (0.37%); geranyl acetate (1.95%); nerol (0.39%);  geraniol (3.80%); neral (30.06%); geranial (51.19%; citronellol (0.44%)

Anyone who loves Thai and Chinese food will be very familiar with the beautiful smoky, herbaceous and citrus aroma of Lemongrass. It is often used as a flavouring in food as well as made into a tea, which can be used for a variety of health problems including joint aches, respiratory infections, digestive problems and headaches. Lemongrass has been helpful in reducing high fevers and is often served as a tea for this purpose.

Lemongrass oil is a yellow or amber coloured somewhat viscous liquid with a very strong, fresh grassy herbaceous and citrus odour.

Lemongrass has been called a connective tissue essential oil, because it tightens and tones the skin and connective tissue. This makes it a wonderful oil to use in deep tissue and sports massages. Its also helpful in compresses after injuries or sprains. It makes a perfect blend with Patchouli essential oil to use on the skin when it has become slack after dieting, as it helps restore tone to the skin. It is also effective in soothing inflamed and itching skin, especially when there is anxiety involved. A drop added to your daily moisturiser will help ease inflamed acne.

This is an incredible essential oil with many very useful properties. Used in a massage blend, Lemongrass essential oil can help relieve muscle and joint pain. It also acts as a diuretic, helping the body get rid of excess water and toxins, easing oedema and swelling. It is also helpful in reducing blood pressure.

As a wonderfully uplifting oil, it is often used to help alleviate depression and can be administered as a tea, a massage blend, a bath oil or even a few drops added a diffuser to be dispersed into the room. The aroma and properties are calming, sedative and will help ease nervous tension and lift ones mood. With all the stress in life today, this is a good oil to have in your medicine chest. The oil has also been used to help with nervous disorders such as vertigo, Alzheimers, Parkinson’s disease and convulsions. It strengthens and stimulates the nerves in the body.

For lactating mommies, Lemongrass helps increase the production of breastmilk. Add two drops to 10ml Jojoba oil and use as a massage blend or add it to your bath water. Besides stimulating breastmilk production, the calming properties will help the new mommy to relax, be calm and refreshed.

Lemongrass is often used as an effective deodorant, a far better choice than the synthetic deodorants which can irritate the skin. Dilute it in some distilled water, add to a spritzer bottle and there you have a natural deodorant.

Lemongrass blends well with Basil, Bergamot, Black Pepper, Cedarwood, Clary Sage, Cypress, Geranium, Ginger, Grapefruit, Jasmine, Lavender, Marjoram, Orange, Patchouli, Rosemary, Tea Tree, Vetivert and Ylang Ylang.

Caution: Lemongrass may irritate sensitive skin, so remember to do a patch test. It is also best avoided during pregnancy. Keep out of reach of children.