WTF? (What’s That Flower?): Curcuma

WTF? (What’s That Flower?): Curcuma

I’m so excited to share this second post in our WTF (What’s that flower?) series. Last time we introduced you to sfumato ranunculus. This time we’re bringing you Curcuma flowers! We’ve just added them to our product line-up and most people haven’t heard of it or seen it before, but I think that will change once more people discover how beautifully unique this flower is!

Pink Curcuma Flowers

If you’ve heard of Curcuma, it’s most likely from its budding popularity among gardening circles or because it’s also the genus of plants that the spice, turmeric (aka Radix Curcumae), is from. The most common variety (Curcuma Alismatifolia) is also known as “Siam Tulip” or “Summer Tulip”. Despite this name, it’s not related to tulips nor does it look like a tulip. For more seasoned flower pros, when you look at the bloom, you’ll probably notice the similarity to ginger flower and that’s because Curcuma shares the same plant family, Zingiberaceae. Okay, so I’ll stop here before we get too technical with Latin plant classifications!

Curcuma flower is a tropical plant native to Southeast Asia. In Thailand, there is a national park (Pa Hin Ngam National Park) that is well known for its wild fields filled with Siam Tulips. Who wouldn’t love to take a trip to Thailand to see that!

Field of Curcuma flowers in Thailand

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You might assume that we’re getting these from a farm somewhere in Southeast Asia, but we’re actually getting these from our Dutch farm and they grow them so beautifully! There are a lot of varieties of Curcuma that come in various colors, but the most common are pinks and whites.

White Curcuma flower

The bloom shape of Curcuma is what makes it such an exquisite flower! It is so multifaceted: there is a lower section of green cup-shaped “petals” that transition into larger and colorful petals that form the main bloom. You may also see little flowers peeking out of the “cups” which remind me of the center of an orchid bloom.

Closeup of pink Curcuma

Curcuma flowers have long slender stems which add to their elegant look.  The petals are a bit delicate, but with proper care and handling, the vase life of Curcuma can last up to a week (average is 3-5 days).  The top petals will open up a little more after a couple days in water, but you could use it soon after it arrives if you want a tighter bloom. It’s a flower that is not difficult to work with in arrangements and is a perfect choice if you want something different for your wedding or event. You’ll have a lot of people asking you what is that flower!

We’ll soon be showing you some bouquets that feature Curcuma in our DIY Bouquet Recipe series, but in the meantime, check out our Curcuma Flowers and let us know if you have any questions! We hope you enjoyed learning more about this flower and remember – feel free to drop us a line if you want help identifying a flower or want to learn more about another flower variety!



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