Bengal Ginger
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Bengal Ginger
ative Photo: Ganesh Mani Pradhan
Common name: Bengal Ginger
Botanical name: Zingiber rubens    Family: Zingiberaceae (Ginger family)

Bengal Ginger is a ginger family plant native to NE India, with leafy stems grow up to 6 ft tall. Its flowers in summer. Flowers arise from base of rhizome with the inflorescence almost embedded on the growing substrate. A short stalks carries the inflorescence with tightly packed bright red bracts. Single flowers emerge from within the bracts. Flowers have a showy patterned lip. Flowering period is over a period of about three weeks to a month with individual flowers appearing from the bracts successively. Individual flowers last in bloom for around 4-5 days. The seed capsules are bright red. The plant becomes dormant in winter - stems dies down and rhizomes remain underground, and only the bright red seed-capsules are visible. Seed capsules used as a spice in parts of India.

Identification credit: Dinesh Valke, Ganesh Mani Pradhan, Prashant Awale
Photographed in Kalimpong, West Bengal and Mizoram.
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