“Butterfly Ginger”, a copyrighted post, was written for my WordPress blog called Always Growing by Jan in Covington, Louisiana
This year we haven’t seen as many butterflies as in previous years, and the ones that have shown up seem to have come later than ever. But one butterfly that has shown up right on time is the butterfly ginger.
I have these now in three separate areas of the garden, and the clumps have grown enough now to make a nice show of flowers. The almost tissue paper white flowers are so delicate and, of course, resemble the shape of a butterfly. This dark green plant will grow to about five to six feet tall and make a nice summer screen for privacy or as a backdrop for other shorter plants.
But, it is the fragrance, which is strongest at night, that is the most wonderful thing about this ginger. While the flower is only about three inches long, the perfume it gives off in the evening can travel all around the garden. While aroma spreads over a fairly good distance, it is not overpowering or cloying. Butterfly ginger (Hedychium coronarium) has a sweet scent very much like a light gardenia fragrance, and when sitting outside on a warm summer evening, you feel as if you are in a tropical paradise with all this delightful air around you.
Somehow, the fragrance of this plant always reminds me of hurricanes. It must be because when a hurricane comes through and we lose electricity, the windows are open and at night the fragrance drifts in the house. This year I am hoping to be able to experience this ginger’s perfume only when outside because I am keeping my fingers crossed that no hurricane comes this way to make us lose the electricity.