Heliconia rostrata

lobster claw


Heliconia rostrata

Ruiz & Pav. 1802

pronounced: hell-ih-KOH-nee-uh ross-TRAH-tuh

(Heliconiaceae — the heliconia family)


common name: lobster claw

See also Heliconia spp.

Rostratus is Latin for ‘having a beak’. This is one of the most recognized and widely grown species, and one of the most beautiful. The inflorescence it produces is one of the most colourful. The mature plant normally starts to flower in the summer. The flowers last a long time and make an excellent cut flower. It is an easy grower in tropical areas but some room is required because the stalks can reach 200 cm in height. Bright shade is ideal with good moisture in the air and in the soil, but no soggy soils. Sheltered areas are better because strong winds can shred the leaves rather badly.


Photographs taken 2010, Picnic Bay

Page last updated 12th January 2019