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Last Update 06/03/08

Plant of the Month

Dichorisandra thyrsiflora

 Blue Ginger

Blue Ginger or Dichorisandra thyrsiflora is a wonderful, tropical-looking plant which resembles ginger in growth and habit, but is actually a relative of the wandering Jew plant The plant is native to the tropical woodlands of North, Central and South America.  Of the family Commelinaceae they are cultivated for their striking blue flowers.

Blue Ginger, Dichorisandra thyrsiflora

Plant Facts:

Common Name:  Blue Ginger

Botanical Name:  Dichorisandra thyrsiflora

Family:  Commelinaceae

Plant Type:  Erect, clump-forming, rhizomatous, soft-stemmed, evergreen perennial

Origin: Tropical Woodlands of North, Central and South America

Zones: 10-11

Height:  to 8'

Rate of Growth: Medium

Salt Tolerance: Low

Soil Requirements:  Fertile, well-drained soil

Water Requirements: Freely water when growing, just moist in winter

Nutritional Requirements: Balanced liquid fertilizer monthly

Light Requirements: Partial shade

Form:  Erect ginger-like plant

Leaves:  2-ranked, dark-green to 7" long

Flowers: Blue, sometimes white petals on terminal or axillary racemes

Fruits: Fleshy, orange-red

Pests or diseases:  Anthracnose, Crown Rot, Southern Blight  and  Mealybugs

Uses:  Specimen for shade garden

Bad Habits: None

Cost:  $$ -- reasonable

Propagation:  Divide root or stem cuttings at any time

Sources:   A-Z Encyclopedia of Garden Plants, The Subtropical Garden

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