User avatar
!potatoes!
Greener Thumb
Posts: 1899
Joined: Tue Apr 14, 2009 6:13 pm
Location: wnc - zones 6/7 line

tropical volunteer

this popped up this year from the 'aging' compost. looks like ginger, but i've never seen it this big...but then i've only grown ginger in pots, not outside in a compost pile in a rainy year. aside from ginger or possibly turmeric (which we've been getting fresh from time to time), don't know what it could be. ID, anyone?

Image
Image

will probably try to rescue it before frost comes regardless.

imafan26
Mod
Posts: 11365
Joined: Tue Jan 01, 2013 1:32 pm
Location: hawaii, zone 12a 587 ft elev.

Re: tropical volunteer

It is not Jamaican ginger. It could be turmeric. It will be easy to tell, if you can get to the rhizome and break off a piece it should be orange inside.
Happy gardening in Hawaii. Gardens are where people grow.

User avatar
!potatoes!
Greener Thumb
Posts: 1899
Joined: Tue Apr 14, 2009 6:13 pm
Location: wnc - zones 6/7 line

Re: tropical volunteer

i guess i forgot to update this when i dug it out, lo those many weeks ago. (sorry rainbowgardener!)

it was turmeric.
Image
Image
interesting how the growing tips of the roots are white, but it's a good strong yellow (slightly more orange inside) a liitle farther in.

User avatar
rainbowgardener
Super Green Thumb
Posts: 25303
Joined: Sun Feb 15, 2009 11:04 pm
Location: TN/GA 7b

Re: tropical volunteer

Wow... amazing, turmeric popping up as a volunteer in your compost pile! All I get are tomatoes and squash! The turmeric is a beautiful plant. Did you bring it in for the winter?
Twitter account I manage for local Sierra Club: https://twitter.com/CherokeeGroupSC Facebook page I manage for them: https://www.facebook.com/groups/65310596576/ Come and find me and lots of great information, inspiration

User avatar
!potatoes!
Greener Thumb
Posts: 1899
Joined: Tue Apr 14, 2009 6:13 pm
Location: wnc - zones 6/7 line

Re: tropical volunteer

no, i broke too many roots (not in the pics, different from the rhizome pictured), and thought it would probably struggle too much inside (not a lot of window real estate to spare, either)...so i harvested the rhizome and composted the rest. i may try it again next year though, in a more intentional way. a local farm grew it this year in their greenhouse and are selling it at the food co-op, so it's around...will just have to see what the availability of rhizome to grow with is in the spring. or i may try to save a scrap of this.

meanwhile, I'm enjoying having it around to cook with.

Northernfox
Greener Thumb
Posts: 870
Joined: Sat Mar 17, 2012 4:07 am
Location: Fort Saskatchewan Alberta
Contact: Website

Re: tropical volunteer

What a great volunteer! Just like rainbow I get tomatoes and squash among my insane amount of weeds.
Stephen

imafan26
Mod
Posts: 11365
Joined: Tue Jan 01, 2013 1:32 pm
Location: hawaii, zone 12a 587 ft elev.

Re: tropical volunteer

Actually turmeric normally goes down in winter. The rhizomes can be stored in damp sand and replanted next year. It doesn't take much as long as the pieces have eyes. Sometimes I just pot them in a six in pot and just keep them barely moist. They pop up when it is time. The compost was probably warm so the rhizomes came up again. Usually they are dormant or going dormant now.
Happy gardening in Hawaii. Gardens are where people grow.

User avatar
rainbowgardener
Super Green Thumb
Posts: 25303
Joined: Sun Feb 15, 2009 11:04 pm
Location: TN/GA 7b

Re: tropical volunteer

Northernfox wrote:What a great volunteer! Just like rainbow I get tomatoes and squash among my insane amount of weeds.
I really don't get weeds where I use my compost, just a bunch of tomato plants and a few squash. I know where the compost was put, because I can track it by all the volunteer tomatoes, so I really know weeds aren't coming from it. Perhaps you need to be more careful about not putting weed seeds in the compost. Mainly that means staying on top of weeding so that the weeds are pulled before they have a chance to go to seed (or get very close - sometimes if they have bloomed, they will go ahead and set seed even after they are pulled). Secondarily, that would mean, if the weeds have bloomed, cut all the flowering parts off and trash them and just compost the leaves.
Twitter account I manage for local Sierra Club: https://twitter.com/CherokeeGroupSC Facebook page I manage for them: https://www.facebook.com/groups/65310596576/ Come and find me and lots of great information, inspiration

imafan26
Mod
Posts: 11365
Joined: Tue Jan 01, 2013 1:32 pm
Location: hawaii, zone 12a 587 ft elev.

Re: tropical volunteer

If there are a lot of weeds in the compost it also probably means the compost isn't very hot and it isn't being turned much. Hot composting should kill the weeds. Would cardboard or a tarp over the pile help keep the heat in and block the light and keep the weeds down?
Happy gardening in Hawaii. Gardens are where people grow.

Northernfox
Greener Thumb
Posts: 870
Joined: Sat Mar 17, 2012 4:07 am
Location: Fort Saskatchewan Alberta
Contact: Website

Re: tropical volunteer

It was a problem with the seed bank in the soil I originally had in the garden. my compost is in the back of my garden and it is the last area I use this soil in before I thought... wait a minute Stephen your a biologist and give contractors hell for bringing foreign soils to new construction sites because the seed bank in the soil always has weed seeds!

I now sheet mulch that area and that has helped a lot!

you are right my compost does not decay thermally. based on my restricted space and the length of my winter I typically end up with a vermaculture compost. I have been able to get a thermal compost in the past with much fretting. most of the time by July my plants are all around my tower composter and don't get the space to move it.

the other thing that has helped is I have been re-building my soil.
Stephen

imafan26
Mod
Posts: 11365
Joined: Tue Jan 01, 2013 1:32 pm
Location: hawaii, zone 12a 587 ft elev.

Re: tropical volunteer

Importing soil can be a problem. I needed to build up the bed in the herb garden and used some red dirt that was brought in. It turned out to be loaded with nut sedge. I already had a problem with that since nut sedge seeds were blowing in from an adjacent plot.

I got some other soil from another spot and it looked good, but seedlings from some tree keeps popping up. At least it wasn't nut sedge and the tree seedlings are easy to pull when they are young.

I don't have space for a regular compost pile, that is why I was doing mostly vermicomposting and trench composting.
Happy gardening in Hawaii. Gardens are where people grow.

User avatar
!potatoes!
Greener Thumb
Posts: 1899
Joined: Tue Apr 14, 2009 6:13 pm
Location: wnc - zones 6/7 line

Re: tropical volunteer

imafan26 wrote:Actually turmeric normally goes down in winter. The rhizomes can be stored in damp sand and replanted next year. It doesn't take much as long as the pieces have eyes. Sometimes I just pot them in a six in pot and just keep them barely moist. They pop up when it is time. The compost was probably warm so the rhizomes came up again. Usually they are dormant or going dormant now.
i should have guessed this. my potted ginger go dormant that way during the winter. maybe i'll pot up a few of the pieces.

Northernfox
Greener Thumb
Posts: 870
Joined: Sat Mar 17, 2012 4:07 am
Location: Fort Saskatchewan Alberta
Contact: Website

Re: tropical volunteer

Do you think i could pot some in March and plant it outside and get it to grow for a harvest by mid september?
Stephen

Return to “Plant Identification”