Verbena, Lemon Verbena

A deciduous perennial shrub native to South America (Chile, Peru, Brazil). Plant 'Lemon' verbena in full sun, requires plenty of water in a loamy soil. Blooms either small lavender or white flowers in August or September. Seeds or vegetative cuttings are used to regenerate new plants. Can grow 10-15 ft tall and 5 ft in one growing season. Only hardy in zones 9-10. Must be brought in when it falls below 40 degrees. A tender annual in Zones 3 - 8

'Lemon' verbena is used in the perfumery, especially in making bath lotions and eau de colognes. Dried leaves make a wonderful potpourri mixed with cinnamon sticks, calendula, chamomile, dried lemons.

The leaves are used for it's lemony flavor for fish, poultry dishes, herb vinegars, vegetable marinades, jams, puddings and beverages. 'Lemon' verbena is used to make herbal teas, flavor alcoholic beverages and makes a refreshing sorbet.

The major properties in verbena oil are : citrol, nerol and geraniol. In it's pure state is very expensive as a pure oil, most manufacturers (perfumeries, food mfg.s & tobacco companies) dilute it's properties with other plant material.

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