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Alpinia zerumbet

Description from Flora of China

Costus zerumbet Persoon, Syn. Pl. 1: 3. 1805; Alpinia fluviatilis Hayata; A. schumanniana Valeton; A. speciosa (J. C. Wendland) K. Schumann (1893), not (Blume) D. Dietrich (1839); Languas schumanniana (Valeton) Sasaki; L. speciosa (J. C. Wendland) Small; Zerumbet speciosum J. C. Wendland.

Pseudostems 2--3 m. Ligule 5--10 mm, abaxially hairy; petiole 1--1.5 cm; leaf blade lanceolate, 30--60 × 5--10 cm, glabrous except pubescent at margin, base attenuate, apex acuminate with a spiral mucro. Panicles drooping, to 30 cm, enclosed by 2 long sheaths when young; rachis purple-red, velvety; branches very short, 1- or 2(or 3)-flowered; bracteoles enclosing flower buds, white with pink apex, elliptic, 3--3.5 cm, glabrous. Pedicel 1--2 cm. Calyx white, subcampanulate, ca. 2 cm, split on 1 side, apex toothed. Corolla tube shorter than calyx; lobes milky white with pink apex, oblong, ca. 3 cm; central lobe larger than lateral ones. Lateral staminodes subulate, ca. 2 mm. Labellum yellow with purple-red stripes, broadly ovate-spatulate, 4--6 cm, apex crisped. Stamen ca. 2.5 cm. Ovary golden yellow hirsute. Capsule vermilion, globose, ca. 2 cm in diam., ribbed, apex with persistent calyx. Seeds angled. Fl. Apr--Jun, fr. Jul--Oct. 2 n = 48*.

Cultivated for ornament, including plants with variegated leaves.

Guangdong, Guangxi, Hainan, Taiwan, Yunnan, [Bangladesh, Cambodia, India, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, Philippines, Sri Lanka, Thailand, Vietnam].


 

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