Costus woodsonii

Costus woodsonii, or Woodson’s Spiral Ginger, is an intriguing tropical plant featuring spiral leaves and vibrant cone-like bracts. With striking shades of red, orange, or yellow, it adds an exotic touch to gardens and landscapes. Thriving in partial shade and regular watering, it’s a captivating choice for ornamental displays in warm climates.

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Costus woodsonii, commonly known as Woodson’s Spiral Ginger or Red Button Ginger, is a captivating tropical plant that belongs to the Costaceae family. Native to Central and South America, it is favored for its unique and ornamental features, making it a popular choice for gardens and landscapes in warm climates.

Physical Characteristics:

  • Foliage: Woodson’s Spiral Ginger is known for its spiral arrangement of leaves around the stem. The leaves are lance-shaped, glossy, and usually have a rich green color. The spiral arrangement creates an interesting visual effect as the plant grows.
  • Flowers: The inflorescence of Costus woodsonii is visually striking. It features cone-like bracts that encase the true flowers. The bracts can vary in color, often displaying shades of red, orange, or yellow. The actual flowers are small and inconspicuous, nestled within the bracts.

Cultivation and Care:

  • Light: Woodson’s Spiral Ginger thrives in partial shade to filtered sunlight. Avoid exposing it to intense, direct sunlight, as it prefers dappled light conditions.
  • Watering: Keep the soil consistently moist, as this plant appreciates regular watering. However, ensure that the soil is well-draining to prevent waterlogging, which can lead to root rot.
  • Temperature and Humidity: This ginger plant prefers warm and humid environments. It is sensitive to cold temperatures and should be protected from frost.
  • Soil: Use well-draining and fertile soil. A mix that retains moisture without becoming waterlogged is ideal.
  • Fertilization: Feed the plant with a balanced, slow-release fertilizer during the growing season (spring and summer) to encourage healthy growth and flowering.


  • Pruning: Remove any dead or yellowing leaves to maintain the plant’s appearance and promote new growth.
  • Pest and Disease Control: Keep an eye out for pests like aphids and mealybugs. Good air circulation and avoiding excessive moisture can help prevent these issues.


  • Ornamental Plant: Costus woodsonii is primarily grown for its unique spiral arrangement of leaves and eye-catching bracts. It adds an exotic and tropical touch to gardens, landscapes, and even indoor spaces in appropriate conditions.
  • Cut Flowers: The vibrant and cone-like bracts of Woodson’s Spiral Ginger can be used in tropical-themed floral arrangements to add an element of exotic beauty.

In summary, Costus woodsonii, or Woodson’s Spiral Ginger, is a distinctive tropical plant with spiral leaves and cone-like bracts that make it an attractive addition to ornamental landscapes. With its striking appearance and relatively easy care requirements, it brings a touch of the tropics to a variety of settings



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