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shellflower, shellplant


blade lanceolate to narrowly elliptical, (20–)33–67 × (3–)7.5–11 cm.


drooping, 15–30 × 6–10 cm;

stalks of cincinni 0.3–3 cm, bracteoles sheathing, white proximally, pink distally.


lip yellow with red penciling, perianth and staminodes otherwise white or pink.

Alpinia zerumbet

Phenology Flowering spring–summer (May–Sep).
Habitat Disturbed hammocks and thickets
Elevation 0–30 m (0–100 ft)
from FNA
FL; Central America; South America; native; Asia [Introduced in North America]
[BONAP county map]

Alpinia zerumbet is commonly cultivated, but rarely escapes. The illegitimate name Alpinia speciosa (J. C. Wendland) K. Schumann and Hollrung 1887 [(not A. speciosa (Blume) D. Dietrich 1839]) has often been used for this species.

(Discussion copyrighted by Flora of North America; reprinted with permission.)

Source FNA vol. 22.
Parent taxa Zingiberaceae > Alpinia
Synonyms Costus zerumbet, Languas speciosum, Zerumbet speciosum
Name authority (Persoon) B. L. Burtt & R. M. Smith: Notes from the Royal Botanic Garden, Edinburgh 31: 204. (1972)
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