Dichorisandra thyrsiflora, Blue Ginger

Category: Shade Perennials
Family: Commelinaceae
Origin: Brazil
Evergreen: yes
Flower Color: purple
Bloom Time: seasonal
Height: 6 ft
Width: 2 ft
Exposure: part shade
Irrigation: medium
Cold Hardiness: 7 F
Description: Blue ginger is the oldest plant in the garden, originally planted in 1971. That's quite an incredible claim considering the number of gardeners that have killed it, primarily due to exposure to deep freeze. The trick is to grow it in heavily mulched soil with a ground cover. The location should be somewhat protected by overhead canopy and the soil should be well-drained because this plant is prone to rot. Furthermore, despite being evergreen, it will die back in a freeze. So to hedge the risk of losing it, prior to a freeze, cut the canes and propagate by setting them in water or laying them atop a tray of dirt in the greenhouse.