Monday, February 15, 2010

Hedychium hybrid, Yellow Butterfly Ginger

Hedychium hybrid 
Yellow Butterfly Ginger
Hedychium (pronounced he-DIK-ee-um) gingers can be a bit difficult to identify as there is some confusion about the species flavum and flavescens , both of which get called yellow ginger but neither of which look like this one. The big selling point of these plants is that they have a strong perfume which is like a cross between honeysuckle and gardenia . They also have a reasonable tolerance of cold as they can act like a perennial and go dormant over winter. (US zones 7-11). I like to admire them in other peoples gardens but no longer grow them because of the stem borer which seems to affect all but our native species. The plant above shows signs of stem borer by the distorted and weak top leaves. The borer will often work its way from the centre of the plant causing the tips to be starved of moisture . Badly affected plants may flower poorly or not at all. Providing gingers with a good rich soil and plenty of soil moisture over summer is a way of ensuring that damage caused by this pest is kept to a minimum for those who wish to have a go at growing them.


  1. Ian, what a beautiful flower! And a quite interesting looking stalk from which it blooms.

  2. Thanks a lot for this post on Ginger lilies. I have linked this post of yours in my post on yellow Ginger Lily:
    Thank you so much.
    And, I am following you :)