Upright wild ginger
Saruma henryi, commonly known as Upright Wild Ginger, is native to much of central China.
In its homeland it used to thrive in dense forests, valleys and on the banks of streams but used medicinally, this plant has been placed on the Red List as over collecting has threatened its survival in the wild.
Thankfully it is being cultivated by gardeners as a useful ground cover plant for moist, permanent shade.
It grows in a slowly spreading mound forming a carpet of large, downy, heart-shaped leaves that have a silvery sheen tinged with purple in spring. These turn dark green and look fresh throughout the growing season.
The three petalled pale yellow flowers are sweet rather than awe inspiring but as this plant must have shade, they will shine out of the gloom. Saruma henryi is the only species within this genus.
Photo: Blackstem Plants
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Dark green, hairy
Bright sulphur yellow
Moist, humus rich
Full shade, partial shade