Hardiness: USDA Zone 8a: to -12.2 °C (10 °F) USDA Zone 8b: to -9.4 °C (15 °F) USDA Zone 9a: to -6.6 °C (20 °F) USDA Zone 9b: to -3.8 °C (25 °F) USDA Zone 10a: to -1.1 °C (30 °F) USDA Zone 10b: to 1.7 °C (35 °F) USDA Zone 11: above 4.5 °C (40 °F)
Sun Exposure: Sun to Partial Shade Light Shade
Bloom Color: White/Near White
Bloom Time: Mid Summer Late Summer/Early Fall
Foliage: Herbaceous Smooth-Textured
Other details: Flowers are fragrant Average Water Needs; Water regularly; do not overwater
Soil pH requirements: 5.6 to 6.0 (acidic) 6.1 to 6.5 (mildly acidic)
Patent Information: Non-patented
Propagation Methods: By dividing rhizomes, tubers, corms or bulbs (including offsets)
Seed Collecting: Remove fleshy coating on seeds before storing Seed does not store well; sow as soon as possible
I acquired a piece of this plant a couple of years ago here in Madison, WI. It finally bloomed for the first time this summer.
What a delightful spicy Gardenia like aroma it had! It bloomed for awhile after I brought it in for the Winter, but then all of its spikes blasted.
Does anyone have an idea for blooming this beauty indoors?
More H2O perhaps?
As a child in Cuba I remember to have Mariposas "white Ginger" plants all around the house, especially in the wet zones of the patio. their perfum was part of growing up in my country. The plants were taller than our front porch varanda so the flowers were easy to reach from the porch, and many evenings I watched the zun zuns flying around the flowers; they never went to the roses or the jasmins, always to the mariposas flowers. Now a mature woman myself I am trying to recreate my mother's garden in my house in Tampa, today I receive a white ginger from Hawai, and is already planted, I also have a jasmin del cabo, or Grand Duque how was called in the nursery where was purchased, and a confederate jasmin (both are doing fine, very healthy and blooming) I have seeing about 5 or 6 mariposas plants growing up in the wild by the hillsborough river which run behind our property, it look like they like this area.
On Jun 21, 2012, hellebore from Mount Olive, MS wrote:
Have been growing this in my garden near the outlet for my water treatment plant for 6 or 7 years now and it has never failed to thrive from day one and it spreads well. I am in Magee, MS and after frost it will die back to the ground but always comes back well every year, even after snowy winters. The fragrance is lovely and is always anticipated in late summer. I never water or feed mine; presumably it picks up enough water for its needs from the outlet pipe. I am interested in the notes of those who tried to grow it indoors; the aroma of an indoor blooming plant would be marvelous. I also need to divide it and start a second bed as the current one is getting rather thick. I am curious to know if this particular ginger has edible roots or if it just a coincidence of common names; I have not investigated this myself, as it has not come up.
Edit: Got curious enough to look; apparently the flowers are edible in salads and suchlike and the root is listed as a famine food for when all else fails, but should probably be eaten with great caution, if at all. It is not, however, the ginger-root spice like can be purchased in the supermarket.
We call the plant Camia here in the Philippines a tropical country. I am now on commercial propagation of this plant along with Sampaguita(jasmin sambac} and my notes are the following. It loves shade and moisture. The secret is this, Camia is a long-day-plant, it needs more than 12 hours of light and if you want to induce it to flower you have to apply artificial light to brake the dormancy.
On Oct 23, 2010, realrdp from Branford, CT (Zone 7a) wrote:
Have 4 White Ginger plants between 3-5ft, but none of them bloom. They seem healthy, periodic brown tips, but nothing drastic. Keep room temp between 70-78 degrees and water once a week, with soil moist. Bought the root sets from Hawaii, 5 yrs ago. What am I doing incorrectly?
On Jun 17, 2010, PammiePi from Green Cove Springs, FL wrote:
I left a 1 gallon pot of Butterfly Gingers sitting in a natural spring in my yard, intending on planting it. The ginger seemed to be happy in the plastic pot so I left it there. The next year, the ginger split the plastic pot so I then planted it. Years later I have many gingers in my lower yard, where they have spread in a line along the spring. It gives my lower yard a wonderful tropical look, and in late summer, the gingers bloom and the whole backyard is filled with a wonderful scent! They are near my pool which makes them even more enjoyable. Easy to care for, easy to propagate, and easy to contain if need be (I let mine go where they want). I grow mine in moist soil, & part to filtered sunlight. They seem to linger near the spring and have not spread to the higher, drier parts of my property.
On May 14, 2010, garyloveslucy from Jefferson City, MO wrote:
I live in Zone 5 but it is really a protected Zone 6. I planted these in the ground, next to the foundation, on the East side of the house and decided to leave them in the ground for the winter under a foot of mulched leaves for protection. As I write in Mid-May, I now have 24 that have sprouted and are around 2 feet tall. We had several nights of -5 F temperatures and was the coldest winter in a number of years.
Try this amazing and hardy plant but make sure it is next to your foundation if you are not in a hardy place. It works!
I actually have a question: I'm a landscape architect, but new to Florida. Is it a problem to plant Hedychium coronarium near (about 4ft away) a hot tub? I'm worried about two things: (1) Damage to the plant from chlorinated water spray, and (2) Litter from the seed pods - will they cause a maintenance problem on the pool deck? Thank you!
On Feb 1, 2010, SouthernGal from Naples, FL wrote:
This ginger has been shared and shared with friends & family from NW Florida to SW Florida- and from coastal to inland locations. You couldn't ask for a sweeter scent either. If they are going to get a lot of sun, don't let them dry out.
On Dec 7, 2009, NE_wtginger_fan from Arlington, MA wrote:
Ok, I am Vexed with this plant. I live in MA, zone 6 and got this plant on my honeymoon. I have had some challenges with the ginger plant. I get brown leaves on the edges, it seems to do OK, but I was expecting more considering what I have read here.
I keep it wet very wet and it is in the window which may be the issue. But the Brown leaves come in all seasons, so I am not sure. Any guidance would be greatly appreciated. I do use filtered water; I read that the chlorine in the water may hurt the plants.
Don't mind the challenge of growing the plant, but would love to be more successful with the White Ginger.
I'm growing a white ginger plant indoors, started from a small piece of root brought back from Hawaii 2 years ago. It is now almost 6 feet tall and sends up new shoots regularly. There are 9 new shoots right now. It has not bloomed yet but we still enjoy the greenery...our piece of tropical paradise here in frozen Michigan. Any advice on keeping the stalks from bending over? Also will it eventually bloom here in the North? Many thanks!
On Oct 28, 2009, Tropicool from Orange Park, FL (Zone 9a) wrote:
I've had this plant for about 3-4 years. This year is the first time it has bloomed. Not enough water, I think. It smells wonderful! and the scent carries maybe 20 feet across the pool deck. And this just from about 6 blooms!
I have had this in a container for the entire time, and it has probably doubled or trebled in volume. It's going in the ground next year!
On Oct 24, 2009, Kelli from L.A. (Canoga Park), CA (Zone 10a) wrote:
Blooms in November here, if it blooms at all. I think that dry spells in the fall (frequent Santa Anas) are hard on it and it may not be too keen on the alkaline soil. Has never gotten very tall, about 3 feet.
The plants seem to do well, and they multiply each year. I have them planted in a partial shade area of my garden. By the time they bloom, (late September early October) the cold mountain mornings seem to get the best of them. I wounder if I move them to full sun if they will bloom earlier? Can anyone advise?
On Aug 4, 2008, thecliffbear from Birmingham, AL wrote:
My ginger plants here in Birmingham grow very well. They are about 4to 5 ft. when they bloom in august, when they come back up in the following spring they have usually multiplied by twenty to thirty pecent.
i have had one of my landscaping clients plants to obtain a six ft. stand in a fertile moist area near limestone out cropings in the back yard.
Make a ginger lei. Pick the fat buds with stems, wrap up in leaves and keep in a glass of water until you're ready. Use any thread, even crochet thread is fine, and a needle that passes through the hollow stem and beneath the stamens. The stems should be clipped a qtr. to a half inch. You'll need about a 100 blossoms. Fewer will make a shorter lei. The flower buds will fit together, stamens lying in the same direction. Leave an end of string/thread before the knot to help with tying the end, or wrap around a little twig to keep the first flower bud from slipping off. In Hawaii we used lei needles made of long wire with a tight little tiny hook for the thread. Several flowers can be strung at once before sliding them down the thread. These leis are so special!
The White Ginger illicits fond memories of my childhood in Hawaii when we would go into the deep forested areas of Nuuanu Valley and the Pali to pick these fragrant blossoms to use them to make leis. Even songs are written about them. Gingers, both white and yellow, grow wild in Hawaii. My mother grew an entire hedge of them, and when they would bloom, the heady fragrance filled the air night and day. How lucky I was to grow up in the Hawaiian tropics.
My father used to bring me this elegant pure white flower with the most charming fragrance from the wild back home after his fishing trip. I miss it so much!! Please let me know where I can get it in NY metro area. Thanks!!
On Dec 14, 2007, LiliMerci from North of Atlanta, GA (Zone 8a) wrote:
I live in Atlanta, GA, have this plant. It was given to me by someone in the family. Since I didn't know what it was, I originally kept them in a container, it didn't do much, green leaves. Decided to put them in the ground. They grow and multiply like weeds. I'm going to have to dig some out and give them away! Incredible sweet scents and attract ants.
On Oct 29, 2007, mimianvy from Beverly Hills, FL (Zone 8b) wrote:
This plant has beautiful foliage and very fragrant flowers. My butterfly ginger is over 5ft tall and is growing next to a chain link fence to help support it. They do tend to fall over if not supported.
I have a wonderful seating area next to this plant and there are a couple of hummingbirds that love to visit this plant.
On Jul 5, 2006, Joy from Kalama, WA (Zone 8b) wrote:
I have grown this plant here in the Pacific North West for 5 years and I've never seen a bloom. It gets a lot of handsome tropical looking foliage during the growing season, just no blooms. It dies down to the ground here in the winter and it's slow to come up in the spring. I have it in a shady location, but perhaps it would do better with some sun here. After reading these other comments I'm thinking it might do better in a wetter area as well.
I'll re-post if any of these changes makes a difference.
On May 22, 2006, JaxFlaGardener from Jacksonville, FL (Zone 8b) wrote:
This plant grew in a swampy area on our homestead in Jacksonville, Florida. It's fragrance is a delight.
The H. coronarium is very prevalent in our area and can be found in many marshy locations and along ditch banks.
I was thrilled one night to find a hummingbird moth visiting the blossoms to feed on the nectar. The moth was so intent on dining that it didn't mind me walking up and observing it from a distance of just a few inches. The moths have the same movement of darting foreward and backwards as does a hummingbird, and they have the eerie trait of their eyes glowing bright orange in the dark if there happens to be a light source nearby.
On May 21, 2006, Two_and_a_cat from Titusville, FL wrote:
Beautiful plant that grows well here in Titusville, FL. All ours are in mostly shaded to fully shaded locations. They get 30 minutes of water, twice a week. We cut them back to the ground after they bloom. They are very fragrant.
On Jul 3, 2004, punaheledp from Kailua, HI (Zone 11) wrote:
White ginger has always been one of my favorite flowers and finally got some last Nov. My mother had tried to grow it on the other side of the island, but being near the ocean with sandy soil and pretty dry, it never did very well no matter how she babied it. It has done very well here and its first flowers opened tonight...wonderful fragrance!! Recently I discovered it is one of 3 gingers on UH Botony Dept pest plant list. Although it has been a problem in some areas, popularity with gardeners and lei makers has kept it from biological control...can't keep an enemy insect or disease in problem areas and out of a growers back yard I guess... I was looking for something else on pest list when I discovered ginger on it... still love it.
On Apr 17, 2004, Dave_in_Devon from Torquay United Kingdom (Zone 9b) wrote:
Although many species and hybrid Hedychiums do extremely well in the south of the UK at least, H coronarium rarely flowers before autumn is well under way (often not until November). Unfortunately flowers can be damaged by autumn winds and rain and the lower temperatures mean that the fragrance is barely discernible. It is a very hardy plant, but needs hotter and longer summers than we have here to perform really well.
On Apr 17, 2004, foodiesleuth from Honomu, HI (Zone 11) wrote:
Mariposa, (white or butterfly ginger) is one of my all time favorite plants. It is the National Flower of Cuba. As a child and youth growing up there I remember little boys selling the blooms at ten stems for a penny. I was able to grow some white ginger while living in South Carolina, many years ago. I now live in Hawaii where they grow wild with the least encouragement. The area where I live is quite rainy. We do not fertilize them. They grow well in full sun or deep shade. Beautiful leis are made with the blooms. You can also find them with a yellow bloom and in a beautiful salmon pink color. Although they are also heavily scented, they don't seem to be as fragrant as the white. White ginger in Hawaiian is called "awapuhi keo kea".
On Oct 15, 2003, soilsandup from Sacramento, CA (Zone 9a) wrote:
The fragrance of this plant is wonderful, but the blooms are less-than-spectacular in my climate (California's Central Valley.)
The individual blossoms tend to wilt quickly, hang on, and are unsightly as new blooms open up in the cone. And yes, it does tend to spread quickly. Hedychium gardnerianum is a better plant for spectacular bloom and fragrance.
On Aug 21, 2003, suncatcheracres from Old Town, FL wrote:
This past Sunday our Koi & Watergarden club visited a nursery in Gainesville, Florida, that specializes in gingers. We were presented with a short lecture, some handouts, and an opportunity to buy--which we did!
I purchased what I thought was a white butterfly ginger, which the lecturer said is the most cold hardy of the all the gingers, and will overwinter as far north as Atlanta, GA and Raleigh, NC, as it originated in the Himalayas. The white butterfly ginger also has the largest flower, and is the most fragrant of all the Hedychiums, which is the general botanical or genus name for all the butterfly gingers. In the warmer parts of Florida and Texas Hedychiums are evergreen and everblooming, but where frosted down every winter, such as here in Northcentral Florida, zone 8b, they bloom in late summer and early fall.
My white butterfly ginger is a variation with yellow spots called Hedychium coronarium variety 'Chrysoleucum.' The only difference is the bright yellow spots in the center of the white petals, and the flowers are slightly smaller.
Other growing information for white butterfly gingers: they prefer part shade to full sun--the more sun they get the more water they need. Try to strike a happy medium--enough sun to flower profusely, but not singe the leaves. Of course the further South you live, the more shade they need. They can succeed in shallow water or as a sub-tropical in the border. The tubers should only be just covered by soil, and they prefer a rich, moist soil. Our lecturer said he uses a balanced, slow release pellet fertilizer, as gingers do not need a special bloom fertilizer to bloom profusely. Be prepared to stake, as once the heavy flowers are in full bloom, the stalks tend to fall over. They spread, and are now considered an invasive pest in Hawaii.
Another white butterfly ginger variation is called 'Maximum.' I've only seen pictures, but the flowers appear quite large and white, with pale yellow stamens.
There is an explosion of interest in gingers in the plant trade, now that it's been discovered how hardy these tropical looking plants can be. Many people are scouring the tropics looking for more exotic species, and breeders and hybridizers have gone gung-ho, as it seems gingers are the new "hot thing." This strikes me as kind of funny, as the white butterfly ginger is listed as an old Southern "Heirloom" and "Pass-a-Long" plant that our grand mothers used to grow.
There are some especially lovely salmon and pink colored new cultivars in the Hedychiums, but be warned that named cultivars can be quite pricey! As I have the perfect climate for them in filtered sunlight under old oaks, with lots of rain, I imagine I won't be able to resist buying more--and more--and more, as time goes by!
I grew up in South Louisiana, where my mother has a back yard full of white ginger. It was planted under the canopy of a Pecan Tree.
When it was in bloom the whole neighborhood had the Gardenia-like smell everywhere. I have since moved to north-central Arkansas. I brought some with me and plant it in a large pot, bring it in for the winter. This past fall to early winter, it bloomed inside. Fond memories come back to me when I smell that sweet fragrance. My only concern is whether to fertilize. My mother has never fertilized hers, only the nutrients from the soil, but I fertilize mine with Miracle Gro (water-soluble fertilizer.)
On Aug 24, 2001, smiln32 from Oklahoma City, OK (Zone 7a) wrote:
Ginger Lily is a tropical perennial; the green stalks grow from a thick rhizome to a height of 2-4' feet. In autumn the stalks are topped with fragrant white flowers that resemble butterflies. The beautiful rich green foilage makes a great background for smaller plants.
A tropical plant, Hedychium coronarium can tolerate an occassional light freeze; frost will kill it to the ground, but it quickly comes back. It is a popular landscape plant throughout Florida and the Gulf Coast. It is also used in California, the Caribbean and tropical areas throughout the world.
This plant has been said to grow in the following regions:
, (3 reports) Auburn, Alabama Birmingham, Alabama Brewton, Alabama Decatur, Alabama Houston, Alabama Jones, Alabama Lowndesboro, Alabama Memphis, Alabama Mobile, Alabama (2 reports) New Market, Alabama Scottsboro, Alabama Smiths, Alabama Union Grove, Alabama Vincent, Alabama Kibler, Arkansas Little Rock, Arkansas Paris, Arkansas Solgohachia, Arkansas , California Brentwood, California Capistrano Beach, California Encinitas, California Fresno, California Los Angeles, California (2 reports) Merced, California Monterey Park, California Poway, California Sacramento, California San Jose, California Santa Barbara, California Upland, California Woodland Hills, California Alachua, Florida Archer, Florida Asbury Lake, Florida Bartow, Florida Beverly Hills, Florida Bokeelia, Florida Boyette, Florida Campbell, Florida Conway, Florida Coral Springs, Florida De Bary, Florida Eatonville, Florida Floral City, Florida Fort Mc Coy, Florida Haverhill, Florida Homestead, Florida Jacksonville, Florida (5 reports) Jacksonville Beach, Florida Jensen Beach, Florida Keystone Heights, Florida Lakeland Highlands, Florida Lakeside, Florida Loxahatchee, Florida Melbourne Beach, Florida Miami, Florida Micanopy, Florida Myrtle Grove, Florida Naples, Florida Navarre, Florida Niceville, Florida North De Land, Florida Ocala, Florida Old Town, Florida Oldsmar, Florida Orange Springs, Florida Palm Coast, Florida Palm Harbor, Florida Paradise Heights, Florida Pembroke Pines, Florida Samoset, Florida Sanford, Florida Sebring, Florida Tallahassee, Florida Tampa, Florida (2 reports) Tarpon Springs, Florida Timber Pines, Florida Titusville, Florida Trenton, Florida Utopia, Florida West Vero Corridor, Florida Aldora, Georgia Ashburn, Georgia Cleveland, Georgia (2 reports) Colbert, Georgia Cordele, Georgia Dahlonega, Georgia Dallas, Georgia Flemington, Georgia Fortson, Georgia Martinez, Georgia Norcross, Georgia Richmond Hill, Georgia Rincon, Georgia Honomu, Hawaii Kailua, Hawaii Makaha, Hawaii Grovertown, Indiana Wichita, Kansas Covington, Louisiana De Ridder, Louisiana Denham Springs, Louisiana Estelle, Louisiana Gonzales, Louisiana Mandeville, Louisiana New Orleans, Louisiana Old Jefferson, Louisiana Saint Francisville, Louisiana Slidell, Louisiana Mears, Michigan Carriere, Mississippi Gautier, Mississippi Hattiesburg, Mississippi Lyman, Mississippi Madison, Mississippi Mathiston, Mississippi Mount Olive, Mississippi Saucier, Mississippi Blue Springs, Missouri Saint Martins, Missouri Roswell, New Mexico Chapel Hill, North Carolina Clemmons, North Carolina Elizabeth City, North Carolina Elrod, North Carolina Kure Beach, North Carolina Oxford, North Carolina Raleigh, North Carolina (2 reports) Winston-salem, North Carolina Columbus, Ohio Fruit Hill, Ohio Broken Arrow, Oklahoma Brush Creek, Oklahoma Oklahoma City, Oklahoma Tulsa, Oklahoma Hubbard, Oregon Vieques, Puerto Rico Bluffton, South Carolina Centerville, South Carolina Conway, South Carolina East Sumter, South Carolina Greenville, South Carolina Hardeeville, South Carolina Hilton Head Island, South Carolina India Hook, South Carolina Irmo, South Carolina Islandton, South Carolina Ladys Island, South Carolina Lexington, South Carolina Lincolnville, South Carolina Pelion, South Carolina Prosperity, South Carolina Memphis, Tennessee Pocahontas, Tennessee Austin, Texas Baytown, Texas Beaumont, Texas Brenham, Texas Clark, Texas Copperas Cove, Texas Corpus Christi, Texas Dalworthington Gardens, Texas Desoto, Texas Eagle Mountain, Texas Fort Worth, Texas (2 reports) Garland, Texas (2 reports) Houston, Texas (2 reports) Keller, Texas Lufkin, Texas Millsap, Texas Missouri City, Texas Murchison, Texas Oakhurst, Texas Port Neches, Texas Roman Forest, Texas San Antonio, Texas (3 reports) Santa Fe, Texas Scenic Oaks, Texas Spring, Texas Sunset Valley, Texas (2 reports) Tyler, Texas Willis, Texas Aquia Harbour, Virginia Chesapeake, Virginia Fairview Beach, Virginia Petersburg, Virginia Bellevue, Washington Kalama, Washington Spangle, Washington