Lemon Verbena
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Lemon Verbena
ntroduced Photo: S. Jeevith
Common name: Lemon Verbena
Botanical name: Aloysia citriodora    Family: Verbenaceae (Verbena family)
Synonyms: Aloysia triphylla, Verbena triphylla

Lemon verbena is a perennial shrub or subshrub growing to 2-3 m high. The 8 cm long glossy, pointed leaves are slightly rough to the touch and emit a powerful scent reminiscent of lemon when bruised. They are arranged in whorls of three. Sprays of tiny lilac or white flowers appear in late Spring or early Summer. It is sensitive to cold, losing leaves at temperatures below 0 degree C. Due to its many culinary uses, it is widely listed and marketed as a plant for the herb garden. Lemon verbena leaves are used to add a lemon flavor to fish and poultry dishes, vegetable marinades, salad dressings, jams, puddings, greek yogurt and beverages. It also is used to make herbal teas, or added to standard tea in place of actual lemon (as is common with Moroccan tea.

Identification credit: Tassaduq Mueen Photographed in the Nilgiris, Tamil Nadu & Srinagar, Kashmir.

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