Costus ricus - Gingers R Us
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Catalog : Costaceae : Tender Costaceae :

Costus ricus

Type: Plant

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Costus ricus flower I am very excited about this one; I have never seen this species in cultivation anywhere else. It is endemic to the Pacific coastal regions of Costa Rica and produces very showy flowers and there is typically an attractive architectural form to the foliage with a tight spiral of leaves all gathered toward the top of the plant. At Cerro Nara in the mountains above Quepos I found two different forms of the plant, one with the "normal" horizontal bract appendages, and one with pendent bract appendages looking somewhat like Costus lima, but this does not seem to persist and must have been a factor only of growing conditions.

Costus ricus is one of two Costa Rican endemic species of Costus that have uniquely shaped bicarinate (two keeled) bracteoles, which makes them very interesting from a botanical perspective. This character is present in the the South American genus Chamaecostus, many other Costus species. How these two species evolved in this way is still a bit of a mystery. If this sort of thing is of any interest to you, you can read more and see the comparison on my website.


Costus ricus Costus ricus bracteole

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