This species is rarely found even in its native habitat on the Caribbean side of Costa Rica and parts of Panama. It has tall stright upright stems with glistening shiny leaves. The bracts are reddish and the flowers yellow, very much like the Pacific-side Costus plicatus differing mainly by the leaves.
Growing in large pots, it gets about 10 feet tall and flowers dependably for me. It has strong stems that do not tend to fall over like some gingers.