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PUBLIC NOTICE: Alien Invasive Plant Awareness Campaign

Municipal Plant of the Month – the White Ginger Lily. Hedychium sp H.coccineum, H.gardenerianum, H.coronarium, H.flavescens.

Identification: These plants have similar growth habits to Cannas. And are large and robust – growing up to 2 m tall. They have large broad bright green leaves that sheath the stems. The flowers range in colour from white, yellow to red and orange-yellow. Flowers are very showy and have a lovely fragrance. Flower spikes appear between January and March – they are up to 350 mm long and every individual flower has a slender tube, three narrow and three broad petal-like lobes. Hedychium sp sprouts very readily from strong rhizomes, forms dense clumps and easily re-grow from any broken sections left behind in the soil.

Invasive Status: Ginger lilies are listed as Category 1b weeds and habitat transformers and must be removed and destroyed. They invade forests, plantations and riverbanks as well as moist shaded sites.

Control: Ginger lilies are difficult to control once established. As there is no herbicide registered for the control of this plant, although Kaput has been found to be effective in some instances, entire plants and rhizomes should be manually removed. Follow-up may well be necessary to remove plants that have re-grown from pieces of rhizome left behind. Do not dump this species on a compost heap – it will take root and establish itself right there. Preferably shred before disposal/composting. However, if that is not possible, remove the rhizomes, allow them to dry out and then burn.

References: (search under COMMUNITY SERVICES and NEWS tabs.