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Zingiber zerumbet

 
Zingiber zerumbet
red pinecone ginger; shampoo ginger
Zingiber zerumbet
The 'cone' gets longer as it matures

Common name red pinecone ginger; shampoo ginger
Family zingiberaceae
Life cycle perennial (Z8-10)
Flowers yellow
Size 4-7'
Light sun-part shade
Cultural notes moist organic soil

Clumping rhizomatous plant native to Southeast Asia with upright-growing narrow deep green leaves. In summer, flower spikes emerge, topped by bract structures resembling pine cones. We planted ours in September, and saw only foliage the following year – finally, in July of its third year in our garden, it produced its interesting inflorescence. The cone starts out as a tight green egg-shaped structure, and soon starts producing solitary creamy-white flowers peeking out from alternating locations among its scales. Over the weeks, it elongates, and then starts turning progressively rosier in color. By this time, the cone is no longer tight: a light touch reveals that it's mostly hollow inside, and also releases an ooze of fragrant liquid.

red pinecone ginger; shampoo ginger
Turning rosy-red by early September
Zingiber zerumbet
A year after planting – lots of foliage, but no flowers yet
red pinecone ginger; shampoo ginger
New growth, mid-April
Zingiber zerumbet
Developing robustly by late May

In our garden, this plant grows in the following area: foundation border

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Last modified: September 05, 2021
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