The Hedychium coronarium (white ginger)

Hedychium (Common names include garland flower, ginger lily, and kahili ginger) is a genus of perennial plants native to tropical Asia and the Himalayas.

It grows upto120 and 180 cm tall. Some species are grown as ornamental plants.

The Hedychium coronarium (white ginger) is the National Flower of Cuba where it is known as "Flor de Mariposa" (little Butterfly flower) due to its similarity to a flying white butterfly. This species is fragrant and women garnished themselves with these flowers during Spanish colonization of Cuba. The intricate structure of the inflorescence allowed women to hide inside it and carry secret messages during the fight for independence. It is said that a Guajiro's house (farmers) is not completed without a white ginger plant in his garden.

Today the plant has gone wild in the cool rainy mountains in Sierra de Organos, Pinar del Rio Province in the west, Escambray Mountains in the center of the island and in Sierra Maestra located in the  west.White ginger is common in Brazil and is considered an invasive weed. It was introduced in the era of slavery in Brazil,brought to the country by African slaves.

The climate of Dehra Dun is ideal for the Ginger Lily and can be easly grown here. The plant is considered to bring luck to the house where it is grown. It also has great medicinal value.In Chhatisgarh, the Amarkantak hills are covered with dense forests, and it is the treasure house of valuable herbs and medicinal insects. Here the adivasies have been growing White Ginger Lily, (Gulbakawali) for generations, ever since it was brought there by the Sadhus from the Himalayas and this area where it is grown is known as “Mai Ka Bagicha”. The Gulbakawali Ark of Amarkantak is world famous. The traditional healers and natives of this region are well aware of its medicinal uses. This Gulbakawali Ark is used as eye-tonic and is said to prevent Motiabind (Cataract). Gulbakawali is used in Chinese natural medicine and has been prescribed and used in treatment of headache, lancinating pain, contusion, inflammatory and intense pain due to rheumatism etc. It is also used as febrifuge, tonic, excitant and anti-rheumatic in the Ayurvedic sSome of the species are as under:

Hedychium aurantiacum, Hedychium coccineum, Hedychium coronarium ,Hedychium densiflorum, Hedychium ellipticum (Shaving Brush Ginger), Hedychium flavescens, Hedychium gardnerianum, Hedychium samuiense.

Hedychium spicatum, (called kapur kachari in Hindi)

Where to get these plants:

Anurag Nursery, Vasant Vihar,     

Dehra Dun

Rajeev Nursery, Opp. Krishna Mander,

Dehra Dun

Shri Laxman Pouddhshala,


Kaulagarh Road, Dehra Dun