Maji ya Chai: Swahili; Citronelle: French;
Lemongrass is another botanical with wide-ranging health and longevity properties. The leaves can be boiled and used for a tea that is said to help with stomach aches, cramps, muscle aches, fever and even high blood pressure. Lemongrass grows in thick clumps and its roots help to hold in topsoil and prevent erosion, so it’s often used as a ground cover in permaculture or organic gardens.
Planting lemongrass, or citronella, is said to keep away insects, but we’ve only found this to be true with the Citronella Java or Cymbopogon winterius variety. Citronella java’s essential oil makes a very effective natural insect repellent, but you do have to keep applying it every few hours.