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Torch Ginger

Torch Ginger




On the last day of one of Cotigao trip, we all (Me, Deepak, Rajas Deshpande, Priti patel and Blaise) were searching for a butterfly mud puddling spot on the way from Cotigao to Netravalli. 

We stopped at a place to inquire tot he people about any such spot. Luckily we were near to one nursery, where some unseen plant was planted. I took so many photos, as it was indeed something spectacular. When returned home, I found it was indeed the plant was lesser known to many people - Torch Ginger.



Habitat and identity

It is an introduced variety and supposed to be native of Indonesia and Malsia. Now a days it is being introduced in other tropical parts of the world.
It can grow tall upto 12-20 ft. Stems remain green throughout the life. Flower is pink / dark pink and have sphere like shape. Spherical with almost 8 inch radius. Petals mostly goes upwards and forms beautiful pattern.


Use
Torch ginger is cultivated to produce flowers and stems for various reasons. Flower is used for decoration. 
Stem is used for some medicinal purposes as they posses  antioxidant, antibacterial abilities [1]. Stems are chopped and added to some soups made with rice noodles [2]. 

Species



According to [2], Torch ginger has had numerous generic designations through the years: Alpinia, Phaeomoria, Nicolaia, and Elettaria.

The taxonomy was tangled and confusing. In the 1980s, Rosemary Margaret Smith of the Royal Botanic Gardens Edinburgh tackled the gingers and determined this plant belonged to Etlingera.



Since then, Axel Dalberg Poulsen of the National Herbarium of the Netherlands has dedicated his studies to these glorious plants. He has discovered there are at least 70 species, many not yet described, spread from India to the Pacific Islands.


Quick Facts:


Common name: Torch Ginger, Ginger Flower, Red Ginger Lily, Torch Lily, Wild Ginger, Combrang, Bunga Siantan, Philippine Wax Flower, Xiang Bao Jiaing, Indonesian Tall Ginger 


Botanical name: Etlingera elatior 

Family: Zingiberaceae (Ginger family)

Synonyms: Alpinia elatior, Nicolaia elatior, Phaeomeria magnifica, Phaeomeria speciosa



Ref:

[1] http://www.biomedcentral.com/1756-0500/4/67
[2] http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Etlingera_elatior
[3] http://www.flowersofindia.net/catalog/slides/Torch%20Ginger.html

10 comments:

  1. Wow, lovely lower and well "shot"! And thanks for the info!

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  2. Hari Om
    That is not only a fabulous shot, but wonderfully informational post! YAM xx

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  3. Beautiful torch flower, and loved learning more about it too, thanks!

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    Replies
    1. Thanks Freda, Comments tells that the purpose of writing is blog is served :-)

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  4. Lovely pictures and a lot of information!

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