Wednesday, 24 February 2010


I got this hybrid 'J4' along with 3 other hybrids from Thailand through an order put through by Lyndi some 2 years ago. This is the first time it has bloomed for me, possibly because i've been taking better care of my plumerias. I'm trying to get them to grow a lot bigger in time for the new house. This one produces a nice tight posey of flowers which has hues of peach, yellow and pink. The flowers are also larger than most other plumerias, so in all, it makes quite a statement in any garden. So far only another has bloomed, with the remaining still pretty much in stunted growth. Perhaps i'm not given it ideal growing conditions.

musa laterita

Ruspolia 'Twilight'

I first chanced upon this beautiful flowering shrub planted along the drive-way of NPark's headquarters at the Singapore Botanic Gardens. It has beautiful lavender coloured fowers which grow in small bunches. Unfortunately, it is unscented. When I saw a lonely specimen planted in a bag for sale at Ji Mei, I grabbed it without any haste. It remains potted in the bag today but continues to flower profusely. This is an evergreen shrub which can grow up to 3ft tall. It requires regular moisture, full to part sun and thrives well in fertile, well-drained soil.

etlingera tulip

The only place to see this lovely Etlingera is at the Singapore Botanic Garden's Ginger Gardens. It can be found blooming occasionally behind the waterfall.

As the name says, the Tulip Torch Ginger has an unusual tulip-shaped inflorescence. The bracts of the inflorescence are closely packed when young, giving the distintive tulip shape. As they mature, they spread out to reveal its red petals with yellow markings on the top edges. Each red, wax-like inflorescence, grows on its own stalk, which can reach a height of 2 feet, making it perfect as a cut flower.
The foliage is dark green, which adds to the ornamental beauty of this ginger. In addition, the leaves release a strong ginger scent when crushed.

A fabulous tropical specimen plant, Tulip Torch Gingers can reach a height of 6-10 feet. If grown in full sun, they will be shorter and vice versa if grown in shade They can be successfully grown in a large container in full sun. They should be planted in full sun to part shade in rich, moist, well-drained soil. They need a tropical climate or warm greenhouse.

etlingera elatior red

Etlingera burttii

Another rare ginger which can only be found in SBG's Ginger Gardens, the Etlingera burttii is a large ginger with a creeping rhizome that gives rise to leafy shoots which reach to a height of over 7 m (23 ft.) tall. Each shoot holds up to 30 large leaves that can grow to 100 cm (40 in.) long and 20 cm (8 in.) wide. The inflorescence sits on the ground and holds numerous, densely clustered, yellow flowers with a red stigma. The shooths and the fruits are edible. Tubu Ligan is native to Sabah and Sarawak on the island of Borneo, where it grows in montane forest to about 1500 m (4900 ft.).

jungle king

The Jungle King aka red ginger or Alpinia purpurata remains one of the most popular and beautiful gingers of all time, given the striking colour and showy size of its blooms. Although immensely popular with gardeners and seen in many tropical gardens the world over, I find this ginger difficult to grow. For some reason, they "downsize" under my care, to the point where it shrinks into oblivion. According to various literature, this ginger, like most other gingers, prefer fertile, organically rich, well-drained soil. It can thrive in full sun to bright broken light. I grew mine in a mixture of compost and mixed soil, so surely that does constitute "fertile, organically rich" soil. Then again, I noticed that nurseries usually grow them and other zingiberacae in very "clayey" soil. I guess i'll have to continue experimenting until I get the right mix.

the bauhinia