Hedychium flavescens – Yellow Ginger
Scientific Name: Hedychium flavescens
Synonym: Hedychium Flavum
Common Names: Yellow Ginger, Cream Garland-lily, Cream Ginger, 'Awapuhi melemele
Growth Habit: Herb/Forb
Hawaii Native Status: Introduced. This naturalized ornamental garden plant is native to the Himalayas.
Flower Color: Yellow, Cream
Flowering Season: Midsummer to late autumn
Height: To 6 feet (1.8 m) tall or more
Description: The individual flowers emerge from between green bracts on the flower spikes. The flowers have 3 slender, linear, yellowish or greenish sepals and 3 spoon-shaped, yellow or cream petals. The 2 lower petals are opposite each other. There is yellow-orange at the base of the top, largest petal. The flowers wilt after one day. The pseudostems (formed by the leaf sheaths) emerge from underground rhizomes. The leaf blades are green, sessile, and oblong-lanceolate to lanceolate in shape.
Here in Hawaii, Yellow Ginger is an invasive weed in moist forests and open areas, and it is especially common along roadsides.
The similar White Ginger (Hedychium coronarium) has pure white (not cream) flowers with pale yellow at the base of the top petal.
Fragrant – The flowers have a delightful, powerful fragrance that perfumes the air. The flowers don't last very long as cut flowers, but their scent is wonderful.
Kingdom: Plantae – Plants
Subkingdom: Tracheobionta – Vascular plants
Superdivision: Spermatophyta – Seed plants
Division: Magnoliophyta – Flowering plants
Class: Liliopsida – Monocotyledons
Family: Zingiberaceae – Ginger family
Genus: Hedychium J. Koenig – garland-lily
Species: Hedychium flavescens Carey ex Roscoe – cream garland-lily
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