The aromatic leaves of this plant are used to flavor many Indian dishes much like bay leaves, especially in curries with fish or coconut milk. The original Indian word "Kari" refers to the sauce of these piquant dishes, hence the name curry leaf. Curry leaves are extensively used in Southern India and Sri Lanka, but are also of some importance in Northern India. Together with South Indian immigrants, curry leaves reached Malaysia, South Africa and Reunion island. An easy to raise plant, that needs full sun, grows to 1-3 feet in containers, minimum temperature 55 degrees, blooms in summer. Use a soil mix consisting of 1 part peat moss to 2 parts loam to 1 part sand or perlite. The soil should be allowed to thoroughly dry between waterings. The plant should be moved indoors during the winter months except in Southern Florida. Water sparingly during the winter months and do not fertilize during these months.
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