Need Ginger, Galangal & Tumeric rootstock to grow

dancinglemons(7B VA)December 20, 2007

Does anyone here know of a GOOD source for EDIBLE Ginger rootstock, Galangal rootstock and Tumeric rootstock?? I want to grow this and can not find a source for the EDIBLE gingers.

I posted on the Ginger forum but there is not too much activity over there right now.


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Just pay a visit to your supermarket or greengrocer, and buy the roots fresh. With luck, they won't have been sprayed with non-germination spray. Choose nice crispy roots - not bendy, aged bits, although they'll probably sprout, too. Then plant them. All can be a bit slow to take off in spring (even here in the subtropics), but they do take off as long as you have a warm/hot climate. Don't bury them deep - just cover them so the rain doesn't wash off the covering layer of soil. It's best to plant pieces which have at least 2 'eyes' - point the eyes upwards if you can.

You might have a bit of trouble finding turmeric root outside an Asian vege market, but it's worth hunting for.

    Bookmark   December 20, 2007 at 2:39AM
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fatamorgana2121(Zone 5/6)

Definitely try your local Asian market. Sometimes health/natural food stores carry tumeric and ginger as well. If not, you can try Horizon Herbs. If I recall correctly, they sell ginger and tumeric roots.


    Bookmark   December 20, 2007 at 8:19AM
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flora_uk(SW UK 8/9)

I just got a big piece of ginger in my vegetable delivery this very day. It has several nice 'eyes' which look as if they would sprout if planted. I have done it once, indoors in a pot, obviously, in my climate. As daisy says, it took a while to get going. The shoots grew quite quickly but roots were slower.

    Bookmark   December 21, 2007 at 2:01PM
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I have planted ginger in my soil outdoors never did make more than a token additional root but the leaves were nice to to put around and under food cooking on the grill.

I hope a source can be found for the Galangal roots. I have a book written about middle ages cooking that mentions the root but then states that the plant is now unknown. So much for that cooking historians knowledge.

    Bookmark   December 21, 2007 at 4:51PM
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nygardener(z6 New York)

These look growable. But your local Asian grocer is probably a good first choice.

I don't think any of these will survive the winter anywhere north of zone 11 or so. You may be able to dig them up and overwinter them dormant in a cool but not freezing spot. Does anyone have experience growing them in a temperate climate?

There is a (reputedly) edible cold-hardy ginger, Asarum canadense, which is sold as a ground cover for a shady, woodland spot. Tripple Brook Farm in Massachusetts has a couple of species of Asarum in stock, along with many other wonderful plants, and is well worth browsing.

    Bookmark   December 21, 2007 at 10:16PM
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dancinglemons(7B VA)

Thanks folks!! I have made the rounds of Asian markets and so far no galangal or tumeric - except dried. Lots of ginger however. I will check the sources posted here.

It is my plan to put them in the ground and in mid/late October every year I plan to put 12 or more inches of leaves on top of the bed and then cover that with a burlap tarp. This will keep the roots from freezing. In spring I will rake the leaves away and let them grow again. Will it work?? Do not know but want to try anyway.


    Bookmark   December 22, 2007 at 3:10AM
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You must remember that these plants are tropical plants, so they MUST be kept warm at all times - they really, really do not like the cold. I have found that pieces of ginger root that have been refrigerated (around 4C), even for a few days,will not sprout. I suggest starting the roots inside, then planting out when all danger of frost has passed. If you live in a cool/cold climate, then it will be best grown in a hothouse. You can make your own mini-hothouse by making a tent from clear plastic. Water the root very, very sparingly until the sprouts appear (just barely enough to prevent the soil from drying out completely), then water fairly generously, making sure drainage is excellent, and keep it warm to hot. Full sun in temperate areas, partial shade in tropics or near-tropics. Think HOT, HUMID, RAINY. The leaves will always die right down to nothing once the weather begins to turn cool - and I'm talking subtropical-type cool, which is around mid-20sC.

Galangal leaves don't die down for me (they just get a big daggy), but turmeric and ginger always do, and they are all amongst the last to reappear in spring (once temps get to an average of say 28-30C-ish). I'm in the subtropics.

I think you'll be battling to grow these plants in a cooler climate. They need around 6 months of hot/warm weather to produce new roots.

    Bookmark   December 22, 2007 at 6:57AM
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I can keep hedychiums alive here if they are next to my house. There's no way in a hot place that you can keep them alive in a zone 7. they will rot at 32º :( BUT you can dig them up each winter and keep them in a wide shallow bulb pot and keep them indoors. Cut down on watering, they like their water during the hot season. They may not spread like mad, but they will be alive.

    Bookmark   December 22, 2007 at 10:57AM
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fatamorgana2121(Zone 5/6)

I got some fresh galangal a week or two ago at my local Asian market so I would think that is your best place to find it. You can ask your local Asian market(s) if they can special order it for you.


    Bookmark   December 22, 2007 at 3:30PM
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dancinglemons(7B VA)

Thanks folks!! I usually have from 5-6 months of hot weather. I'm in Central Virginia and seem to be in a relatively isolated "micro-climate" area. Usually it gets into the 80/90's in early May. Mid-summer I usually get high 90's in June/July/August. At times we will have a run of high 90's for weeks in a row. September is usually in the high 80's/low to mid 90's. As long as the Ginger family is not dependent on hours of daylight I think I can supply the temperatures. I can see that I have more research to do. I will probably plant one set in ground and one set in large pots (EarthBoxes) just to see what happens. Thanks again one and all.


    Bookmark   December 24, 2007 at 3:14AM
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The daylight is not the problem, I have to keep mine in near shade because it's so dry here they get burnt in the sun. You have plenty of humidity, so they can take more sun there, but I don't know about full sun. I will promise you, if it gets down below 32º you WILL lose them, there's no guessing, I have grown gingers for years. They will be happier in the ground during the summer, that's for sure, but if you want them next year, you will have to dig them up and keep them indoors.

Here is a link that might be useful: How to Grow a Ginger

    Bookmark   December 24, 2007 at 11:34AM
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I'm in Raleigh NC and I grow edible ginger - Zingiber officinale. You harvest the roots at 265 days for hottest flavor, so you have to start them inside as houseplants in March and then plant them outside once the night time lows are above 50degrees. Harvest in October. If you grow them in medium light, in very rich soil with regular waterings you can get about 4 times the amount you plant. You can grow them in shade and some people get a good harvest but mine seems to diminish (they don't like full sun in the summer). You can just buy the roots at the grocery store. Lately there has been a scandal about imported Chinese ginger being tainted with something (I grow my own so I didn't pay attention to the details). Most of the ginger I see for sale around here comes from Florida or Jamaica.

Some of the Japanese sushi type gingers are perfectly hardy here in zone 7b - Zingiber mioga - it comes in a beautiful variegated form called 'Dancing Crane' and they handle shade and deep shade quite well. To me they aren't as spicy as regular ginger root.

Turmeric is the root of Curcuma longa which I have never seen available, but a close relative Curcuma alismatifolia is sold as 'Siam Tulip'. Not easy to find but it is out there. I have seen it mentioned as a Turmeric substitute in certain parts of Asia. In this area some gardeners can get it to overwinter but it suffers greatly when I do it so I pot them up and stuff them under the house for a long winters nap.

And yet another ginger relative - Alpinia officinarum (lesser galangal) is sometimes available as an ornamental. As with Curcumas, some people use other members of the Alpinia group as Galanga. Many people can get Alpinia zerumbet to overwinter around here, most often by planting them along the banks of koi ponds.

I also have good luck with Cardamom ginger. This year I am trying to overwinter some in the ground. It rarely blooms outside of the tropics so you can't expect seeds but the leaves are also flavorful.

You'll have better luck finding them in asian markets and if that fails try looking them up by scientific name. Many of the obscure plant sellers in Florida have them. Having the roots shipped is not as expensive as shipping a live plant.

    Bookmark   December 24, 2007 at 2:14PM
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dancinglemons(7B VA)

Thanks trianglejohn !! You give me inspiration !!

I always try to grow something that someone tells me is not possible because I love to experiment!! I have finally found a source online for the ginger, galangal and turmeric that I want to grow. Some of the names you listed are new to me so I will probably get those roots also. If I have to dig them - no problem but I will try them in the ground AND in containers - just to see what happens. Good for me that you are in NC because now I get a better idea of growing conditions I need to provide. Have you ever tried moving your gingers outside under plastic "mini-hoop greenhouse" before nighttime temps are in the 50's ?? How much space should I give each root?? I plan to put some of the ginger in EarthBox which is about 14in wide by 30in long and 11 inches deep -- one or two ginger plants per EarthBox.

Thanks again for the encouragement and the information!!


    Bookmark   December 25, 2007 at 3:20AM
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Most of the 'eating' types of ginger are not really big plants, so they all should do fine in planters or pots. I think the biggest thing I grow is regular ginger root which maybe gets 3 feet tall by the end of summer. The plants aren't that pretty so don't expect a showy section of the garden (except for 'Dancing crane').

The reason I don't push the planting earlier or try to keep them as perennials is that the flavors are at their peak at around 250 to 300 days, so there is no reason to try beyond that. Ginger roots that have been abandoned in the garden made it through most of the winter but eventually rotted.

I also grow some of the Peacock Gingers - Kaempheria (there is one species that is used as Galangal, but I don't grow it). They are very showy shade loving plants that do well for me here in Raleigh. They cannot survive a frost at all. They have a dormant period from about Christmas time til late May, so I dig them up if they are in the ground and pot them - or move the pot inside and use them as houseplants. They handle that degree of torture just fine. If you try and force them into early dormancy by drying them out, they tend to not come back as strong next spring. They also spread better and are generally more healthy if grown in the ground.

For me, the Cardamom has been the most robust grower. A small pot of it will take over the world in one summer. The leaves don't put out much flavor (just a hint) so I always have way more than anyone would ever need - that is why I am leaving some outside under deep mulch this year.

I make candied ginger from all the ginger I grow and give it away as Christmas presents. My yard is pretty shady, so I am always seeking out herbs that will grow in the shade, hence my devotion to gingers.

    Bookmark   December 25, 2007 at 12:13PM
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dancinglemons(7B VA)

Are there any pests or plant diseases that I should worry about?? I will put this thread in my favs and in May 2008 I will post a message to get update on how your Cardamom ginger fared outside under deep mulch. I have so many leaves I could possibly put a inground ginger under 3-4 feet of leaves. Does the Cardamom have a hot ginger flavor or mild flavor? I am going to order that one also but just thought I would ask.


    Bookmark   December 26, 2007 at 2:22AM
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To me, Cardamom taste more like spicy cloves or something other than regular ginger. There are tons of recipes online but they are all for the seeds (ground up) which have a more intense flavor. But like I said, Cardamom rarely blooms outside of the tropics. People from India and that region like to wrap fish and rice in Cardamom leaves.

    Bookmark   December 26, 2007 at 11:09AM
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I am getting ready to thin out my galangal plants. I live in Central Florida, though, so I would have to ship the rhizomes to you, and they're small from being crowded, but they are truly hardy plants.

As an option, have you visited

Here is a link that might be useful: Produce Orders

    Bookmark   May 28, 2008 at 1:27PM
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Happy to report that my Cardamom survived the winter outside under mulch (one foot deep). The plant looks horrible for the experience though. I'm not sure I will do this again. Here in zone 7b there are lots of things that will overwinter with protection but it takes them all summer to recover - not my idea of success. I have Philodendrons and Pepperomias that overwintered this year which was a big surprise.

Lately I'm seeing Galangal and Turmeric roots for sale in the local Asian supermarkets (we have huge ones in this city - one of them is supposed to be the biggest on the east coast!). The roots are cheap!! and very fresh. My trick to get them to sprout is to wash them off, wrap them in damp paper towel and put them inside a plastic bag (ziplok) and set them someplace very warm with good light. It takes over a month for them to form eyes.

    Bookmark   May 30, 2008 at 11:01AM
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dancinglemons(7B VA)

Hi trianglejohn,

I have been away from the GW for a bit, just catching up on my reading. I got the Galangal and Tumeric roots from a GW member in Michigan. The Galangal roots are HUGE!! I have them wraped in damp papertowel in a ziplock bag and I can see the start of eyes. It is now July so do not know if I will get plants this year but I'm hoping.

None of the Asian markets here have the fresh galangal or tumeric.

Hope your garden grows great this year!!


Hi wackyfiasco,

Thanks for the link!


    Bookmark   July 4, 2008 at 12:36AM
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Dancinglemons, I was reading your post with interest. Have a bit of ginger here that I bought at the Asian store and was planning to put it in a pot. It was refrigerated for a few days though. Do you think that will hurt it? I see a couple of the eyes and it seems like in good shape.

    Bookmark   July 14, 2008 at 1:22AM
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dancinglemons(7B VA)


The ginger I have growing right now was refrigerated at the Asian Market when I purchased it. Go for it - if it does not work just go and get another root at the store!!


    Bookmark   July 21, 2008 at 12:30AM
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>>>>>>>>>>>>Posted by nygardener z6 New York (My Page) on Fri, Dec 21, 07 at 22:16

There is a (reputedly) edible cold-hardy ginger, Asarum canadense, which is sold as a ground cover for a shady, woodland spot.

Oh yeah any one else know this plant? was pretty excited to see it posted here. I can truley verify its Cold Super Hardiness For it grows all over around here in the wild and its darn near zone 2 here. Not really what you would think of as a ginger though. Taste is much differnt-closer to galangal. And the root"lets" are tiny little things. mayber the size of a one inch piece of pencil. But It is a gorgeous little ground coverwith heart shaper leaves and My personal favorite wildflowere, seriously, ok one of them. a truely unique looking flower, split in thirds,that hides completely unknown under a miniature jungle canopy an inch off the ground to be pollinated by beattles I believe or something the like. Maybe its not cold enough for the rest of you though? thats a first. I magine having to dig them up in the fall, pot, and store in your chest freezer! rediculous.

    Bookmark   January 12, 2009 at 2:01PM
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I have it growing wild across the street from me in Kansas City, MO and have seen it growing in southern Missouri, northern Arkansas. So it would depend more on the growing site.

    Bookmark   January 12, 2009 at 10:14PM
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I would like some galangal and tumeric root cuttings too>if someone has some to share>>

thanks in advance

    Bookmark   January 21, 2009 at 11:01PM
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A friend of mine that goes to China every other year told me to start looking at the oriental food stores for galangal in late February. He thought turmeric root was available about the same time but since he does not purchase was not certain.

When you look at ginger in the food store look for roots that have new nubs appearing. If the root has new shoots forming it should not have been dipped in retardant.

    Bookmark   January 22, 2009 at 12:21AM
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weedlady(Central OH 6)

I found nice galangal root at a Whole Foods in Dunwoody, GA over the holidays. Until we moved from SW PA last summer, I always was able to buy fresh turmeric root at a small Asian shop neat Pittsburgh. I have grown ginger for the fun of seeing the foliage.

Our native ginger, Asarum canadense, is a lovely little plant that I grow as a woodland groundcover, but it has nowhere near the flavor of tropical ginger.

What I REALLY wish I could grow, though, is a curry leaf tree! What a wonderful aroma & flavor these add to Indian cuisine! But alas--never will happen here in central Ohio and I have not yet found a shop around our new area that sells curry leaves.

Here is a link that might be useful: Curry leaves

    Bookmark   January 23, 2009 at 10:16AM
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I bought my Galangal plant from Aloha Tropicals in San Diego, CA a few years ago, and now, it's spread quite a bit! I started it in a small 10" pot, and now it's filling out an 24" pot! Their plants are a bit expensive, but they have all kinds of tropical plants for purchase including lots of different types of Ginger. The Galangal is under the Alpinias, and they have Edible Ginger under the Zingibers. And they have a Curry Leaf tree under the Fruiting Plants and Trees. They don't have Tumeric though.

Here is a link that might be useful: Aloha Tropicals

    Bookmark   December 26, 2010 at 2:46AM
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Tumeric for sale, Fresh Jamaican Country Tumeric 10 pounds at the price of $95.00 shipping and tax included.

We have been selling Tumeric Root herb online since 2009.

Product shipped between 4-7 days. - website under construction

email or call 876442-4497

Thank You and Be Healthy

    Bookmark   March 2, 2011 at 10:47PM
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