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Another fragrant tropical plant

November 10, 2011

The night between the 9th and the 10th of November we received 8 mm of rain. That is a bit unusual. At 01.33 this morning I measured 20.3 °C. The wind is currently (10.30) northern.

In August Ketsanee blogged about the white ginger lily (Hedychium coronarium, Zingiberaceae). Its less known sister is in blossom at Dokmai Garden now when the nights get cooler: the yellow ginger lily (Hedychium flavescens).

It has fragrant blossom too, very similar to the white ginger-lily but perhaps with some extra drops of mint. It should be grown in a shady moist area just like the white ginger lily. The Thais do not use this flower as an offering, and so it is not as common in Thai gardens. It is probably native to northeast India. There is another yellow Hedychium species native to Thailand: H. flavum. These two species are often mixed up, but H. flavescens blooms late. It is possible these are just two forms of one species with a more extended range. A DNA analysis may resolve the question. The oldest name is Roxburgh’s H. flavum from 1820.

Eric Danell

2 Comments leave one →
  1. viki permalink
    January 27, 2013 1:46 PM

    i have a white flowering ginger growing in a large pot with lots of green growth but no flowers “ever” any suggestions?

    • January 27, 2013 10:12 PM

      Which species is it? There are over 1200 species in the family and some are rain forest species demanding an ever wet climate, others come from monsoon areas and demand a dry season when they stay dormant under ground.

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