Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Hedychium coronarium, Butterfly Ginger is one of the most fragrant Hedychiums

Butterfly Ginger is increasingly being used as a Zone 7 perennial. This planting is off the south side of the East Terrace of the Administration Building at the Arboretum. That means it's in a nice microclimate. That probably explains why it breaks ground so early in the spring and why it has increased so much in just a year. It would survives in the open garden but maybe wouldn't reappear until late May or even mid-June. Still, the fragrance makes it worth a little wait.

It's one of the two Hedychiums I have a bit of trouble with in Adelphi, not because of hardiness, but because, along with H. greenii, it likes water to the point of being able to function as an emergent in water gardens. The same water issues gave me problems in the Florida garden until I moved the entire colony to a low spot directly under a rain spout. Even so the dry winters keep the planting pretty ugly until the rains return in summer.

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