Monday, August 31, 2015

Art of Red Ginger

Splashes of red

were so abundant throughout the gardens surrounding the Cabana I was staying at in Mexico. They were perched everywhere like soft red pine cones. I had no idea what they were but as far as I was concerned they were cheerful red, pops of joy.

I asked the gardener and discovered they were Red Ginger. Also known as  Alpinia purpurata, Pink Cone Ginger and Ostrich Plumes. In some countries it is known as Billy Goat's Foot and it is the national flower of Samoa. It thrives in partial shade and humid moist conditions and can grow 15 feet tall.

The red cone is not actually the flower of this plant. The flower is a tiny white blossom that grows at the tips of the red petals or bracts.

The bright red draws attention to the white blossoms.

It is not edible. However it was once worn as a lei

only by Hawaiian Royalty during important ceremonies. The leaves are used to make dyes that are pale yellow in color.

This week enjoy the beauty of Red Ginger.

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