You can find lemon myrtle in our Australian Bush Food Garden at Green Olive at Red Hill.
Interesting Facts about Lemon Myrtle
Lemon myrtle is a flowering plant native to the subtropical rainforests of Queensland. They typically grow 6-8 metres tall, but they can be kept shorter in Victoria due to the climate and can be hedged or grown in rows. Lemon myrtle gets its name from the strong citrus scent of the leaves when crushed. This scent makes lemon myrtle a great addition to a variety of dishes including baked fish, pasta and roast chicken. Lemon myrtle is also often used in desserts which feature milk, as it imparts a lovely lemon flavour without curdling the milk as lemon juice sometimes does.
Indigenous Uses of Lemon Myrtle
Lemon myrtle has been used by Indigenous Australians for thousands of years, primarily in cooking and as bush medicine. Indigenous Australians used lemon myrtle to relieve headaches by crushing the leaves and inhaling them, as well as in pastes to heal cuts. Lemon myrtle has been shown to be extremely antimicrobial so it is often used in shampoos, lotions and natural cleaning products. The leaves are also steam distilled to create an essential oil which is used in insect repellant, as lemon myrtle contains the citronellal chemotype which is widely known to repel insects.
At Green Olive at Red Hill, our lemon myrtle is planted close together along a fence to create a hedge. Interested in learning more about Australian bush foods? We are developing a range of products and experiences that will allow you to feel, smell and taste bush tucker. In the meantime, check out our other bush tucker plants to learn about some of the other native Australian flora that we’ve planted: Strawberry Gum, Wattle Seed and Finger Limes.
Photo credit: Rushall Garden
Photo credit: The Spice People
Photo credit: Lemon Myrtle Fragrances
Banner photo credit: Nerada Tea
Cover photo credit: Lotus Garden Botanicals