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Plant Profile – Gingers the Queen Flowers of the Plant World

Gingers are the queen flowers of the plant world. They are the source of wonderous fragrances and possess exquisitely delicate foliage and flowers. The fragrance of some butterfly gingers will take your breath away. Gingers enjoy a special position in the botanical kingdom with their elegance in form and texture, sparkling color, and amazing symmetry.

The word ginger conjures up images of an exotic oriental food flavoring. However edible ginger is only one of approximately 1,300 species of the diverse Zingiberaceae family. Gingers are classed as a herbaceous perennial and have enjoyed popularity as an ornamental plant in Asia and the Far East for centuries. Only recently have they become known as outstanding ornamentals in the United States. Gingers as a group add outstanding exotic foliage and exotic flowers to the landscape.

Gingers are wonderful plants for southern climates and protected northern climates. In both areas, gingers are finding favor as interior landscape plants and most do very well in containers. They are heavy feeders and drinkers during the growing season. Most of them do best if they are planted in partial shade; however, some thrive in full sun, and others in full shade. Many species enter dormancy in response to shorter days, cool temperatures, or dry conditions. Rhizomes (the underground stem) survive in a dormant condition beneath the soil surface during cold or dry conditions.

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