‘Tara’ ginger lily has been the subject of debate among Hedychium taxonomists: Hedychium coccineum ‘Tara’ or Hedychium gardnerianum ‘Tara’ or a hybrid? This photograph was submitted as Hedychium gardnerianum ‘Tara’, while I’ve chosen to use what we’ve settled on at UBC with the plants in our collection, Hedychium ‘Tara’.
The long-exserted stamens and stigmas of the flowers of this genus hint at an interesting pollination mechanism. In most flowers, pollen attaches itself to the main body of the insect. In Hedychium, however, pollen transfer occurs via the wings of moths and butterflies. The lepidopterans brush their wings against the floral parts as they move from flower to flower seeking nectar, spreading and pollinating as they go. (source: Zomlefer’s Guide to Flowering Plant Families, 1994).
For a gardening perspective on Hedychium ‘Tara’, check out the Royal Horticultural Society’s profile of Hedychium ‘Tara’, complete with cultivation and propagation information.
Botany resource link: Scott’s Botanical Links. If you’re the sort of person who likes daily botanical offerings, you will likely enjoy Dr. Scott Russell’s Botanical Links. Since 1996(!), Dr. Russell of the University of Oklahoma has shared a link to a botanical resource, with accompanying commentary and a rating. Email and RSS feeds available!