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Hedychium, Ginger lillies - Care Advice

Growing your Ginger lillies

Gingers vary from frost hardy to tender green house or conservatory subjects and even some of the hardy types flower best under protection in colder areas. It is possible to enhance cold tolerance by planting deep in the first year. The rhizomes are happiest at about ground level, and the plants tend to adjust themselves quite quickly with a mulch helping to protect against the worst of the winter cold.

The tolerance of plants to cold temperatures is influenced by many factors. In the UK plants tend to succumb in the winter to damp-induced rotting rather than the cold; keeping plants dry can greatly improve their chances of survival. The effects of micro-climate can give small areas of a garden much more favourable conditions than others and the planting of a ginger against a south or west wall will make a huge difference to their ability of coping with the winter.

It is possible to cheat by growing gingers in containers and bringing them into a cold greenhouse or conservatory, though when in growth they must be well watered and fed. To protect plants in-situ in pots, bubble wrap can be used around the pot to ensure the roots do not freeze and a layer of mulch can be placed on top of the pot to ensure a little extra warmth.

For gingers grown in open ground, we recommend a thick layer of mulch to help reduce frost penetration. Planting gingers into raised beds with good drainage or incorporating some extra drainage into the soil when planting can overcome the problem of winter wetness.

General fertilizer can be used as gingers are heavy feeders and when in growth feeding and watering can be critical to keep your ginger looking good and healthy. We would recommend seaweed extract (also good for your home grown veg!).

For northern regions of the UK, other than the warmer coastal areas, the hardier gingers should be sited in full sun, with a deep mulch in the autumn, with the less hardy varieties being brought in for the winter. For southern areas, most varieties can be planted out in full sun through to full shade, with a good winter mulch. It is often the case that most gingers flower better with more heat; if you can bring in your ginger before the first frosts you may well be awarded with a fine floral display

For any further information about your Ginger lillies, please either call us on 01903 891466 or email us at info@bigplantnursery.co.uk and we will be glad to help.