UC Master Gardeners, Santa Clara County, CA
University of California
UC Master Gardeners, Santa Clara County, CA

Curry Leaf

Garden Help > Herbs

Curry Leaf, Bergera koenigii, (formerly Murraya koenigii; older references may still use Murraya) is a small tree native to India. It is not to be confused with curry powder, nor does it taste like curry powder. The leaves have a citrus-like flavor and are a staple in South Asian cuisines. Note that curry leaf is a possible host for the Asian Citrus Psyllid, so leaves should not be taken outside our local ACP quarantine zone.

How to grow

Protect from frost in the colder microclimates of Santa Clara County (especially young trees). During hot summer weather, protect from direct sunlight so that the leaves do not become sunburnt. Some gardeners have found that the tree grows more vigorously in the ground than in a container.

  • Type: Perennial. Evergreen to Zone 10, but will drop leaves in colder microclimates.
  • Light: Full sun to partial shade (especially in summer)
  • Soil: Well drained
  • Water: Medium. Allow soil to dry between waterings.
  • Size: There are regular, dwarf, and compact (Gamthi) varieties available

When to plant/propagate

  • From seed: Can be difficult. Place fresh ripe seeds in seeding mix in autumn; minimum temperature 68°F. Germination can be erratic, and may take more than a month.
  • Transplants: Plant seedlings year round
  • Cuttings: May be propagated via root suckers or cuttings


  • Harvest leaves anytime to use fresh
  • Leaves may be frozen for later use. Drying is not recommended because they lose a lot of flavor.

Indoors: Curry leaf can be grown as an indoor plant

More information


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