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Flowering plants forever create your garden look additional exciting and will stop neighbors in their tracks to admire their beauty. And when you plant a perennial bloom with gorgeous flowers and aromatic fragrances like Sontakka Plant, they please your mood and surrounding. 

The Sontakka flowers have magnificent blooms that give out an intense fragrance when they bloom. This gorgeous beauty is a perennial flowering plant that hails from the forest understorey of Asia. They are believed to originate in the eastern Himalayan region of India, Nepal, and Bhutan. Mostly, people do not know that this Asian shrub plant belongs to the family of ginger. The flower is famous with other names like White ginger lily, butterfly lily, Indian garland lily, and many more. 

These white wonders are a great choice for growing in your home garden as they are super easy to grow in containers. You can plant them in any kind of space from living room racks to balcony or lawn areas, these charming beauties will only add charm to your garden aesthetics. Because of its delightful blend of colors and aroma, it is widely used in the making of beauty products, scented soaps, perfumes, etc. It is likewise functional in greeting with a reminder for the place, person, and events. Thus, it is used as a decorative flower in events, festival decorations, and weddings. 

Usually, it is found thriving in semi-shaded areas that are subjected to waterlogging. 

It’s another famous name butterfly lily comes after its beautiful petals that resemble the shape of a butterfly’s wings.  In India, besides the name Sontakka, this plant is also known by names like Surulu Sugandhi, Dolan Champa, and more.

So, if you are more curious about this plant then, let us stroll you through everything on how to care for the Sontakka plant. 

What makes the Sontakka plant so special?


The Sontakka plant or White Ginger Lily is the national flower of Cuba where it is referred to as mariposa due to its shape. It is said that when Cuba was under Spanish colonial rule, women used to carry secret messages inside the flower in aid of Cuba’s independence. In the Philippines, it is famous as Camia, which means butterfly in Filipinos, the native language of the country. There, it is worn by women as garlands. Thus, getting its another name, butterfly garland lily.

Besides being used as a decorative plant or greeting flower, White Ginger Lily also marks souvenirs and remembrance too. The magnificent white blooms also symbolize pureness of heart and strong love. That’s why sometimes you can spot this lovely flower in a romantic bouquet. 

Additionally, this flowering plant serves a vital purpose in the manufacture of medicines. This plant has some essential plant chemicals that are beneficial for human beings. For example, the plant contains chemicals like glycoside which is used in the treatment of heart diseases. The rhizomes present in this plant are used in treating internal injuries and asthma. It is also helpful in treating nausea, liver complaints, and more.

Best growing conditions for Sontakka Plant

White Ginger Lily, especially when young, needs a kid-glove treatment. However, they are fairly easy to grow once they get used to their surrounding environment. Here are some basic care tips to keep your Sontakka plant thriving.


Sontakka plants are devotees of bright sunlight. They can thrive in both partial and direct light as they require up to 5-6 hours of sunlight daily. However, if you plant a young plant then, it is preferred to protect it from the direct light of the sun for at least 10-15 days. Later, it can be exposed to the morning sun and after 20-25 days you can place it at a location that is exposed to direct sunlight.


The potting soil plays an important part when it comes to Sontakka plant care. The soil should be well-draining and also be capable of holding moisture. Also, if you are adding coco peat in the potting mix for better water retention then, it is advisable to add Fungicide as the bulbs of the plant are susceptible to fungus. 


For optimal growth, the Sontakka plants require a humid environment. This plant grows well in areas that are waterlogged. The more it is water the better it grows and develops in its every life stage. Thus, it is necessary to keep its soil moist most of the time- especially for the duration of the summer. This is vital for the plant to stay robust sufficient to preserve its lovely flowering stems upright. Also, a healthy watering pattern like watering it in the morning and even evening if the plant so requires. Just water it simply sufficient for it to experience dampness. However, in winters, the plant does not require frequent watering as the water won’t evaporate like in summers. So, just keep the soil from completely drying out.

Temperature and Humidity

Being tropical perennials, the Sontakka plant thrives in humid temperatures. So, if you are planning to grow them indoors it is advisable to place them at a warm location with moist air. If you struggle to find the right place for them in terms of temperature and humidity you can try keeping them with other houseplants or try keeping them in a tray filled with pebbles.


Although the Sontakka flower plant isn’t a heavy feeder however a bit of a meal won’t cause a problem. You can add cow dung or vermicompost in a month or so to promote its growth and blooming. Besides these, you can feed it with NPK (19:19:19) fertilizers during the flowering season when it grows actively.



Propagation and Maintaining

The most common way to propagate Ginger lily is from seeds or dividing rhizomes. All you need to do is dig up the clumps in the roots of the plants and using a spade or knife divide the rhizomes. Each chunk of the rhizome should have a growing shoot as it will be more convenient to plant it in a container or a garden. 


Just like any other plant, the Sontakka plant needs pruning. It not only gives the plant’s foliage a better visual but also ensures better processing and nutrient storing of the plant. The best time to prune this plant is in early spring or fall. It would be less stressful for the plant to adapt to its environment and get ready for its blooming period that is in summer. You can simply pinch off any wilted flower or trim the flower stalk right under the flowering portion when the flowers finish blooming. Just make sure you don’t cut off any new or green portion of the stalk as they collect nutrients to store in the root system.

Common problems and their solutions

This plant is relatively easy-going than some other blooming houseplants. Though, at times it experiences problems like not flowering or root rot.  Root rotting could be due to the plant standing in water for a long time but there are a few reasons when it comes to your Sontakka is not flowering.

Less exposure to the sun

As we have said before, this plant is extremely fond of the sun. Although it can survive in partial shade, it still requires at least 6 hours of sunlight. So, place your Sontakka plant in some place where it receives a good amount of sunlight. 

Requires fertilizer

Even though White ginger lily grows well on its own, at times it might lack nutrients and do not bloom. This might be an indicator that your Sontakka needs fertilizer. So, try feeding it a DAP (Diammonium Phosphate) solution, which is high in nitrogen and phosphorus. It can help in restoring the gorgeous blooms of this plant. 

Also, make sure to monitor your watering patterns because the right pattern can be helpful in diluting and dissolving the nutrients in the soil.



Is the Sontakka susceptible to pests and diseases?

The White Ginger Lily isn’t easily affected by any serious disease or pests. Although it can have garden issues of spider mites or root rots, a little attention on a regular basis will keep it from any of the above problems and keep it thriving.

This charming beauty is a popular pick when it comes to flowering plants- especially by natives of India, Thailand, China, Philippines, etc. If you love to decorate your space with flowers then, the aromatic shrub of the Sontakka plant is your pick. Plant it in your indoor or outdoor space, give it a little love and care and it will reward you with gladdening blooms. 

No doubt this plant is a whole package of wonders. From being used for decorative purposes at weddings, festive events, and many more to the manufacture of medicines for numerous diseases, this plant has it all. You can easily plant it in your space enjoy its beautiful flowers anytime. 

We hope that you found this blog helpful and it answered all your queries regarding this beautiful flowering plant. Also, head over to our  www.viverogarden.com and check out our curated collection of very many gorgeous blooms.

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