Curcuma Plant: Detail Guide on Curcuma Plant Growing and Care

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Curcuma plant are by far the most thrilling herbaceous perennials due to their bright leaves and long-lasting flowers. One unique trait that makes this tropical beauty appealing to many gardening lovers is its ability to be easily overwintered.

This tropical plant meets the bill if want a garden full of vibrant and dramatic leaves, regardless of the season. This lovely summer flowering flower looks lovely in container gardening.

Aside from botanical quibbles, Curcurma plants create great flowering ornamentals with similar proper growth. These tropical and subtropical beauties are suitable to grow as annuals or houseplants, Even if reside in a milder climate.

Curcuma Plant

Curcuma plant is a genus in the Zingiberaceae family that includes species such as turmeric and Siam tulip. They are indigenous to Southeast Asia, southern China, India, New Guinea, and northern Australia.

The name “Curcuma” is derived from Sanskrit, a classical South Asian language. It simply refers to turmeric. Linnaeus, a Swedish botanist and biologist, first used the term in 1753.

Curcuma is a lovely perennial summer plant that has over 100 species. Curcuma and its related species are indigenous to Southern China, Southeast Asia, Northern Australia, and New Guinea.

The name “curcuma” comes from the Sanskrit word kunkuma, which means “turmeric.” Curcuma is an ideal match to garden beds, borders, and container gardens. Alternatively, use curcuma as a tabletop centerpiece on deck or patio.

Most curcuma grows nicely in shaded areas with loose and sandy soil. Curcuma is a herbaceous perennial plant that can grow to be 1 meter tall. It produces a lot of edible rhizomes with yellow or orange interiors.

Plant Overview

  • Botanical Name: Pentas lanceolata
  • Common Name: Hidden cone gingers
  • Genus: Curcuma
  • Family: Zingiberaceae or Ginger family
  • Plant Type: Perennial
  • Mature Size: 2 to 7 feet tall
  • Sun Exposure: Partial sun
  • Soil Type: Fertile with good drainage
  • Soil pH: Mildly acidic
  • Bloom Time: Summer
  • Foliage Color: Cream/Tan, Green, Red/Burgundy
  • Flower Color: Gold/Yellow, Orange, Pink, White
  • Hardiness Zones: 6–11
  • Native Area: Tropical & Subtropical Asia to North Australia

Curcuma Species

Curcuma plants have shown many of the plants to think of as species are actually old sterile hybrids. Some of the interesting Curcuma species and cultivars that have popular at Plant Delights Nursery are listed below.

Curcuma elata: It stood out as one of the best cold-climate garden species in the genus Curcuma. The huge 6′ tall clump is composed of huge, bold-textured, cane-shaped green leaves.

C. longa: It is one of our hardest Curcuma species. Starting in early September, the 3′ tall pleated green leaves of Curcuma longa are covered with bright pinecone-like blooms tucked amid the leaves.

C. myanmarensis: It is a concealed cone ginger that grows extremely hardy and floriferous. Curcuma myanmarensis is native to Burma, where it grows in slow-growing clumps in damp woods.

C. ornata: It looks tropical in the border or in a color bowl. It’s hard to beat this Asian species, which resembles to Curcuma zedoaria but has a far bigger leaves: 28″ long and 8″ wide.

C. petiolata: It has 3′ tall clumps of big, tropical-looking leaves. The leaves grows from a short underlying rhizome, forming a tiny cluster that rises upward. From mid- to late summer, the flowers resemble purple pinecones and appear in the centre of the cluster.

How To Grow Curcuma Plant

Curcuma plant can mature inside or outdoors, depending on the growing conditions in the place where it is grown. If you choose to grow a lot of them outside, the first steps are to create a fertile garden.

Check that the soil in the garden bed drains water quickly. Fill the growth pots with the rhizomes. Later, you’ll need to dig a hole slightly larger in diameter than the growing pot.

Eliminate all perennial weeds that compete for nutrients with Curcuma plants. Mulch the entire garden bed after planting the turmeric plants to keep the ground moist.

Maintain a wet but not saturated soil. At least twice a week, check to see if the soil has dried out. Despite its ability to grow in large numbers, Curcuma plants should not be crowded in order to avoid competing for essential nutrients.


Curcuma are sterile, it is currently assumed that the majority of plants in the trade are hybrids, so don’t expect to see seed unless to wild collected species. Specific Curcuma pollinators are also prevalent in the wild that are not present in the temperate garden.

Thus, unless hand fertilized in the summer, Curcuma will not set seed in the garden. Seed should be collected as the seed pods open in the late fall and surface sowed immediately. It may take several months of warm weather for the seed to sprout.


Curcuma plants should be pruned in fall, when the leaf dies down, to keep landscape looking neat and clean. Many gardeners like deadheading or removing faded flowers to keep their plants looking their best. While removing old blossoms enhances the look of the plant, it is not necessary.

Using sterile pruners, trim the flower spike to four inches above the ground once it has done blooming. Curcuma does not need to be pruned during the growth season, but the brown leaves can be eliminated.

How To care Curcuma Plant

Curcuma plant may be grown in either the sun or the shade. It’s vital to keep curcuma wet in full sun, especially in hot climes. If soil is prone to drying up, cultivate curcuma in partial shade. When cultivated in the shade, summer-blooming flower can tolerate dry conditions pretty well.

Curcuma prefers wet, well-drained soil rich with organic content, such as compost. If lot of sand or clay, amend it with organic matter before planting for best performance.

Soil and Fertilizer

Curcumas have significant water needs since they grow best in well-drained, wet soil. Summer plants like wet, well-drained soil rich in organic matter such as compost and humus. Before spreading the seeds, the soil must have a high clay content and organic matter.

Curcuma should be fed with a general purpose fertilizer in the spring and summer. Curcuma should be pruned in the fall when the foliage turns yellow and dies back to keep the plant looking fresh and neat. Removing old flowers enhances the look of the plant.

Light and Water

The leaves may be placed in open shade; the blossoms will be less vivid due to the lack of sunshine. As a result, give outside plants some morning sun and afternoon shade. Also, grow them in a slightly shaded area. The plant’s foliage may begin to burn if exposed to more than two hours of direct sun daily.

Curcuma flowering plants have high water needs since they grow best in well-drained, wet soil. Water the plant every five to seven days until the canopy is fully developed. Touch the soil with finger every four or five days, and if it is dry down to about 2 inches, water promptly.

Pests and Diseases

Curcuma plant pests of major concern are branch borer and scale, which cause plant infections. Curcumas are rarely plagued by many pests, with slugs and snails being the most troublesome, particularly on the unfurling leaves.

Mealy bugs and spider mites can become an issue in containers or in dry soil. A fungal disease known as mushroom root rot can emerge in aged plants.

Remove any infected rhizome portions, sprinkle the remaining healthy parts with Sulphur powder, and transplant in a different area.

Hope you enjoyed reading the Planting guide of Curcuma Plant. If you think we missed something or have a suggestion, please leave it in the comments section below.

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