Friday, August 21, 2009

The Ginger Jungle

The pendulous blooms of the ginger plant are elegant and fragrant. But is fighting the plant's voracious spreading habit worth it? I'm beginning to wonder.

I've wanted ginger for some time, after seeing it in bloom at Nelson's Water Gardens in Brookshire, so I was delighted when my friend Laura gave me a couple of clumps from her grandmother's stand a few years back.

Now, it's crowding out everything around it. To be fair, it's not the ginger's fault I chose the wrong spot for it. That's often the case with wayward plants. I should have known more about its tendency to spread and placed it where that would be a good thing. But, as a novice gardener, I stuck it in an existing bed where its presence was unwelcome.

Another drawback to the tall plant is it almost never blooms. I can count on one had how many of the fragrant blossoms have made an appearance in all those years. Of course, there are many types of ginger, and this old standard might not be one prone to blooming well. Now, we're faced with the daunting task of digging up deeply established clumps to move it someplace more appropriate. One more lesson learned.

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