Common Name: Native Ginger
Scientific Name: Alpinia caerulea
Native Ginger grows near the main creek bed and along the track towards the old kiwi fruit farm at Booyong. It’s a herbaceous, perennial plant that prefers moist shady areas and is commonly found in rainforests along the east coast. It grows in clumps and can reach 2 metres high, with green glossy leaves up to 40cm long.
Native Ginger is a versatile Australian native herb and the whole plant is edible with especially favourable young gingery roots. They have dark blue berries and the pith surrounding the seed can be eaten and food wrapped in gingery leaves when cooked will take on a subtle gingery flavour.
The fruits were a favourite Aboriginal food and it is said they could be tracked down by following a trail of discarded seeds which can’t be eaten. They can also be ground to make herbal tea. As with all edible plants, correct identification is essential and as many plants are toxic and difficult to identify we don’t recommend you eat them.