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Alpinia caerulea

Description

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Family Zingiberaceae

Herbs perennial , terrestrial , rarely epiphytic, aromatic , with fleshy , tuberous or non-tuberous rhizomes, often with tuber-bearing roots . Stems usually short, replaced by pseudostems formed by leaf sheaths . Leaves distichous, simple , those toward base of plant usually bladeless and reduced to sheaths; leaf sheath open; ligule usually present; petiole present or not, located between leaf blade and sheath, cushionlike in Zingiber; leaf blade suborbicular or lanceolate to narrowly strap-shaped , rolled longitudinally in bud, glabrous or hairy , midvein prominent , lateral veins usually numerous , pinnate, parallel, margin entire. Inflorescence terminal on pseudostems or on separate, short, sheath-covered shoots arising from rhizomes, cylindric or fusiform , sometimes globose , lax to dense, few to many flowered, sometimes with bracteolate cincinni in bract axils and then a thyrse , sometimes a raceme or spike; bracts and bracteoles present, often conspicuous , colored . Flowers bisexual , epigynous , zygomorphic. Calyx usually tubular , thin, split on 1 side, sometimes spathelike, apex 3-toothed or -lobed. Corolla proximally tubular, distally 3-lobed; lobes varying in size and shape . Stamens or staminodes 6, in 2 whorls. Lateral 2 staminodes of outer whorl petaloid, or forming small teeth at base of labellum, or adnate to labellum, or absent. Median staminode of outer whorl always reduced. Labellum formed from lateral 2 staminodes of inner whorl. Fertile stamen median, of inner whorl; filament long or short; anther locules 2, introrse , dehiscing by slits or occasionally pores ; connective often extended basally into spurs and/or apically into a crest . Ovary inferior, 3-loculed initially, 1- or 3-loculed when mature ; ovules ± numerous per locule; placentation parietal , basal, or axile . Developed style 1, very thin, placed in a furrow in filament and between anther locules; stigma appearing above anther, funnelform , papillose , ± wet, margin often ciliate . Stylodes 2, reduced to nectaries at apex of ovary. Fruit a capsule, fleshy or dry, dehiscent or indehiscent, sometimes berrylike. Seeds few to many, arillate ; aril often lobed or lacerate .

About 50 genera and 1300 species: pantropical with center of diversity in S and SE Asia, some species in America and subtropical and warm-temperate Asia; 20 genera (one endemic) and 216 species (141 endemic, four introduced ) in China.[1]

Genus Alpinia

Rhizomes creeping , thick. Pseudostems many, well developed, rarely absent. Leaves many, rarely 1--4; leaf blade oblong or lanceolate. Inflorescence a terminal panicle, raceme , or spike, dense or lax , covered by 1--3 spatulate involucral bracts when immature ; bracts (when present) open to base , rarely hooded , each subtending 1 flower or a cincinnus of 2 to many flowers; bracteoles open to base or tubular , rarely hooded, sometimes absent. Calyx usually tubular, sometimes split on 1 side. Corolla central lobe ± hooded, usually wider than lateral lobes. Lateral staminodes small or absent, subulate or toothlike, adnate to base of labellum. Labellum often showy, usually larger than corolla lobes, sometimes inconspicuous, margin variously lobed or entire. Filament present or absent; connective crested or not. Ovary usually 3-loculed and placentation axile . Stigma usually well expanded, sometimes clavate , rarely geniculate . Stylodes often massive. Capsule usually globose , dry or fleshy , indehiscent or irregularly dehiscent . Seeds numerous , often angled , arillate .

About 230 species: tropical and subtropical Asia, Australia, and Pacific Islands; 51 species (35 endemic) in China.[2]

Habitat

Typically found at an altitude of 0 to 5,308 meters (0 to 17,415 feet).[3]

Taxonomy

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Notes

Name Status: Accepted Name .

Last scrutiny: 21-Jun-2005

Similar Species

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Members of the genus Alpinia

ZipcodeZoo has pages for 31 species, subspecies, varieties, forms, and cultivars in this genus:

A. aquatica (Aquatic Galangal) · A. bambusifolia (Bamboo-Leaved Galangal) · A. calcarata (Indian Ginger) · A. carolinensis (Ginger) · A. chinensis (Chinese Galangal) · A. coerulea (Wild Ginger) · A. coriandriodora (Fragrant Galangal) · A. elatior (Torch-Ginger) · A. formosana (Ornamental Ginger) · A. formosana 'Pinstripe' (Ornamental Ginger) · A. galanga (False Galangal) · A. globosa (Round Chinese Cardamom) · A. graminifolia (Narrow-Leaved Galangal) · A. hainanensis (Hainan Galangal) · A. henryi (Small Galangal) · A. japonica (Japanese Ginger) · A. japonica 'Extra Spicy' (Japanese Ginger) · A. katsumadai (Katsumadai Galangal) · A. kwangsiensis (Kwangsi Galangal) · A. mutica (Small Shell Ginger) · A. nigra (Black-Fruited Galangal) · A. nutans (Cinnamon Ginger) · A. officinarum (Lesser Galangal) · A. purpurata (Red Ginger) · A. purpurata 'Eileen McDonald' (Eileen Mcdonald Red Ginger) · A. racimigera (Raceme Ginger) · A. sanderae (Ginger) · A. vittata (Striped Narrow Leaf Ginger) · A. zerumbet (Pink Porcelain Lily) · A. zerumbet 'Variegata' (Shell Ginger) · A. zingiberina (Thai Ginger)

More Info

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Further Reading

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Notes

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Contributors

Data Sources

Accessed through GBIF Data Portal March 17, 2008:

Identifiers

Footnotes

  1. Delin Wu & Kai Larsen "Zingiberaceae". in Flora of China Vol. 24 Page 322. Published by Science Press (Beijing) and Missouri Botanical Garden Press. Online at EFloras.org. [back]
  2. Delin Wu & Kai Larsen "Alpinia". in Flora of China Vol. 24 Page 333. Published by Science Press (Beijing) and Missouri Botanical Garden Press. Online at EFloras.org. [back]
  3. Mean = 304.790 meters (999.967 feet), Standard Deviation = 440.030 based on 24,901 observations. Altitude information for each observation from British Oceanographic Data Centre. [back]
Last Revised: 2014-04-17