Alpinia japonica - Gingers R Us
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Zingiber


Alpinia Catalog : Alpinia :

Alpinia japonica

Type: Rhizome

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Alpinia japonica in flower I don't know why this plant is not offered more widely for sale. I have only ever seen it listed by one mail order source. They list it as Alpinia japonica 'kinisiana' and call it the "peppermint stick ginger". I have not found an Alpinia japonica subspecies or variety listed that way anywhere in the botanical literature, so I will only say for sure that it is an Alpinia japonica.

[NOTE: During the Third Symposium on Zingiberaceae in Thailand I inquired about this plant with Dr. Hidenbu Funakoshi of Japan. According to him, this is not a subspecies of A. japonica. He says the plant that is named "Alpinia japonica 'Kinisiana' is actually a hybrid of A. japonica and A. intermedia, and the plant that is sold by Stokes Tropicals under the name "Peppermint Stick" is actually just Alpinia japonica. He said A. japonica is the most cold hardy species of Alpinia.]

This is a very hardy Alpinia, one of the few gingers that will stay evergreen in freezing weather. I have tested it myself at temperatures down to the mid twenties, and I have heard that the foliage will stay green down to twenty degrees. It is rated as root hardy to zone 7B and is small enough to be easily grown in pots.

If it does not feeze back, it will produce gorgeous red and white spikes in early spring giving the name "peppermint stick ginger. Most Alpinias only bloom on second year growth. The foliage grows to about 2 ft. tall and it will therefore make a fine groundcover plant.

Grow Alpinia japonica in light shade to part sun. I find it will take about 5-6 hours direct sun if kept moist in summer. Soil requirements are not too demanding, but a well drained organic soil is best.


Alpinia japonica in flower Alpinia japonica in flower

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