BRACT: a leaf-like structure, different in form from the foliage leaves and without an axillary bud, associated with an inflorescence or flower.
Costus species are sometimes identified based on the color, shape and texture of the bracts. Often the exposed (visible) part of the bract is a different color from the covered part. Sometimes the edges of the bracts are frayed (delacerating into fibers) and sometimes they have more solid edges (entire).

Two of these characteristics are used in the Costus Identifier Tool.
BRACTS RED - Costus species bracts that are reddish colored (or reddish orange) on the exposed parts are marked "Y". Costus with bracts whose exposed parts are green, yellow or another color are marked "N". If this characteristic is unknown or variable, it is entered in the GingersRus Plant Database as "U".

EXAMPLE #1 - RED BRACTS
Examples of red bracts


EXAMPLE #2 - NOT RED BRACTS
Example NOT red bract - only in covered part


BRACTS FIBROUS - Costus species bracts that have fibrous edges are marked "Y". Costus with bracts non-fibrous edges are marked "N". If this characteristic is unknown or variable, it is entered in the GingersRus Plant Database as "U".

EXAMPLE #3 - FIBROUS BRACTS
Examples of fibrous bracts


EXAMPLE #4 - NOT FIBROUS BRACTS
Bracts NOT fibrous