Growing to a height of about 30 inches or so, curry plant looks like a cross between lavender and rosemary. It has soft, gray-green foliage and produces small yellow flowers. It may require staking, especially in a windy location or a spot that sees a lot of foot traffic like a tree lawn.
Uses for Curry Plant
Curry plant is often promoted as an aromatic herb. Its common name derives from its scent, which can smell like curry. (As most of you know, curry is actually a blend of a variety of different spices that can vary from country to country and region to region, not the offspring of a particular plant.) When placed along a walkway, the aroma can be unexpected and enticing. To some folks, curry plant doesn't smell as much like curry as something else -- maple syrup. Regardless of how you interpret the aroma, it has a somewhat sweet, spicy and flowery note that seems at home with both sweet and savory fare.
Chiffonade and add to chicken salad or egg salad. It enhances herb vinegar blends and dressings made with vinegar and makes a nice garnish, too. The gray/green foliage holds color when dried making it a nice addition to an herb wreath, swag or even potpourri. The curry plant will look and smell nice there as well.
Growing Curry Plant
This useful little herb can be propagated from seed or cuttings, and the plant itself will survive for years in this way. In Illinois it will not winter over, so treat it as an annual, but if you live in zones 8 to 11 it should stay around for at least 5 years before needing replacement. It tends to get rangy and untidy after a while, though, and will become less productive after about the third or fourth year.
Young plants make unique gifts. Many gardeners are unfamiliar with curry plant and are immediately drawn to its aroma and soft, elongated, gray leaves. It's adorable and unusual.
Growing Curry Plant Indoors
3 oz cream cheese at room temperature.
1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice, or to taste.
1 teaspoon fresh chopped curry plant leaves
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon turmeric
1/3 cup finely chopped celery
1/3 cup finely chopped peeled and seeded cucumber
1 scallion, trimmed and finely chopped
1 Tbls Dijon mustard
1 Tbls chopped fresh chives
1 Tbls fresh curry plant leaves, chopped fine
1/2 Tbls chopped fresh dill
Salt and pepper
Sprigs of herbs for garnish, optional