Melissa, Lemonbalm, lemongrass (Melissa officinalis) PLANT
The balm that also owes its name lemongrass to its citrus aroma, is native to the eastern Mediterranean. It has a long tradition as a medicinal herb and can be found in many gardens around the world. It is a hardy plant that can live to 30 years old. Its small inconspicuous flowers (in June, July and August) are frequently visited by bees, so they are a good place for bees hence its name comes from Melisso-phyllon = leaf bee, gr. melitos = honey
Soil: Rich in nutrients, well drained and sandy, rich in humus, clay. In the garden needs the addition of humus once a year, in pots use slow release fertilizer when replanting.
Light: Sun or partial shade.
Multiplication: by cuttings, before flowering, you can also make cuttings of sprouts the rhizome. Multiplication by seed is by pressing the seeds onto the substrate without covering with soil. The seeds should not remain too wet, so better sprinkle with water High germination temperature above 22 ° C
Winter: Winter hardy. Perennial best location is in areas covered with weeds
In the kitchen: in salads, in sweets, Quark cream with herbs, herbal liqueur, fresh leaves in tea (Boil water, let cool, add the leaves, remove after 8 minutes and drink). Lemon balm leaves should never be boiled. Keeping the leaves is a little complicated, they should be collected very carefully (they are sensitive to pressure) at 35 º C and dried in shade. Must be stored in dark glass jars. Melissa officinalis has the highest content of essential oils before flowering, better to on a sunny afternoon. Also, a good alternative to drying is freezing the leaves
In the home: To add in creams for sensitive and dry skin. Mouthwash
Medicinal: An infusion of the leaves help with sleep problems of the nervous type, migraine, flatulence, menstrual pain. In addition it is attributed an antiviral effect and it is good against cold sores. Fresh on bee stings or wasp leaves can also help to reduce pain