Hedychium coccineum, often known as the scarlet ginger lilly is for us a fast growing easy to grow ginger with narrow leaves and multiple stems reaching often up to 1.75 tall, it is an attractive addition to a jungle planting, even without flowers it’s instantly recognisable. Related to the well-known variety ‘Tara’ Indian Source has narrower, longer flower spikes, almost bottle brush like and somewhat mis-named in our opinion, are more orange than scarlet. So to summarise, this is a great ginger for adding height and exotic foliage, pretty hardy and easy to flower.
As with all Hedychiums we grow, once the foliage has been frosted we recommend cutting the stems back to 30cm then mulching the base of the plant with 10-15cm of a good organic compost such as well-rotted farmyard manure. In really cold areas I would do this in addition to perhaps adding a layer of straw and also something like an up-turned terracotta pot to keep the winter wet and penetrating cold away from the dormant rhizomes.
As with all hardy or temperate gingers they all make wonderful container plants. If you prefer, this can be a good alternative way to cultivate them as they can easily be moved in winter to a frost free location such as a shed or garage to prevent the roots from freezing. As with most fast growing exotic herbaceous plants, regular feeding is essential for maximum growth and flowering. We recommend planting in rich, fertile composts either in the ground or container. In addition to this, regular liquid feeds of a fertiliser such as seaweed extract will reward you with lush growth and hopefully abundant flowers from mid-summer onwards.
It should be noted that we like to sell all our hedychiums in containers, they are rooted plants with at least a seasons growth and will be established enough to produce flowers given good growing conditions the following year if not before. They are slightly more expensive than buying bare rhizomes but we feel this is a better option as most hedychium dislike root disturbance and take a while to recover. You will also be receiving a larger plant.
Depending on the time of year we may cut back foliage to facilitate shipping. This will only be done to late season growth and will not harm the plant in anyway