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Common Name: Butterfly Ginger
Hedychium coronarium is a Perennial up to 1.50 metres tall.
It has edible, medicinal and miscellaneous uses.
E. Asia - India.
Moist places along streams and on forest edges[
Requires a rich moist soil and a sunny position[
]. It succeeds in shallow water[
] and can also be grown in a sunny border as a summer sub-tropical bedding plant[[
Plants are not very hardy, they tolerate temperatures down to about -2°c and can be grown at the foot of a south-facing wall in the milder areas of Britain if given a good mulch in the winter[
The flowers have a delicious perfume which is most pronounced towards evening[
Plants seem to be immune to the predations of rabbits[
The tubers should be only just covered by soil[
Young buds and flowers are eaten or used as a flavouring[
Root - cooked. A famine food used when all else fails[
The seed is aromatic, carminative and stomachic[
The root is antirheumatic, excitant and tonic[
]. The ground rhizome is used as a febrifuge[
An essential oil from the roots is carminative and has anthelmintic indications[
The plant has been used as a remedy for foetid nostril[
The stems contain 43 - 48% cellulose and are useful in making paper[
An essential oil obtained from the flowers is valued in high grade perfumes[
The root contains 1.7% essential oil, which is used medicinally[
Seed - best sown as soon as it is ripe in a warm greenhouse at 18°c[
]. Prick out the seedlings into individual pots when they are large enough to handle and grow them on for at least their first winter in the greenhouse. Plant out in late spring after the last expected frosts.
Division as growth commences in the spring[
]. Dig up the clump and divide it with a sharp spade or knife, making sure that each division has a growing shoot. Larger clumps can be planted out direct into their permanent positions, but it is best to pot up the smaller divisions and grow them on in a greenhouse until they are established. Plant them out in the summer or late in the following spring.