Zingiberaceae

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Description: Zingiberaceae resemble some of the smaller-leaved Heliconiaceae. They have simple, alternate, entire leaves. The plants can become very large, though not as large as Heliconiaceae. The best distinguishing character is their strong ginger smell. Also, the leaf sheath is always closed around the stem. The inflorescences of Zingiberaceae can be borne at the end of the stalk, but frequently they come out of the ground on a separate stem (hence the common name “torch flower” for several cultivated Renealmia species).

Economic uses: Ginger comes from Zingiber officinale, native to India. Many species are grown as ornamentals in the tropics.


Descripción: Las Zingiberaceas se asemejan a algunas Heliconiaceas con hojas pequeñas. Ambas tienen hojas simples, alternas, y enteras. Las Zingiberaceas algunas veces llegan a ser de gran tamaño, aunque no tan grandes como las Heliconiaceas. La mejor característica diagnóstica para distinguir las dos familias es el olor fuerte de jengibre en las Zingiberaceas. También la vaina peciolar, que siempre cierra alrededor del tallo en las Zingiberaceas. Las inflorescencias de las Zingiberaceas algunas veces salen del extremo del tallo, pero mas frecuentemente nacen de tallos pequeños, sin hojas, que salen directamente del suelo.

Usos económicos: El jengibre es el raíz de Zingiber officinale, originalmente de India. Muchas especies se cultivan como ornamentales.


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