Also Known As
Cameroon Spiral Ginger
This rare west African species boasts very showy bright pink, trumpet-shaped flowers with a yellow throat. This is the only ginger relative that I know of that has flowers that emit a light scent of roses. Florida-based plant explorer, John Banta, brought this species from west Africa to Florida. Glenn Stokes, of Stokes Tropicals in Louisiana, gave it the moniker "African Princess." It has proven itself to be quite easy to grow. Keep in mind that its cold hardiness is not yet proven. I have grown very fond of this fragrant beauty, and consider myself very fortunate to be growing it here in Arcadia.
NOTE: If anyone has any information concerning the uses of this plant, please contact me. Thanks.
NATIVE TO: Tropical west Africa: Gabon, Cameroon, Congo , southern Nigeria, and Benin. 
HABITAT: In the wild: 500 to 800 meters altitude.
DESCRIPTION: Spirally twisted shoots, 20-30 inches tall [reported to 48" in the garden, and in a greenhouse, David Skinner of Tallahassee has seen it reach six feet tall]. Slender individual stems in large clumps stand very erect.
- LEAVES: Leaf blades oblanceolate
- FLOWERS: Dazzling pink trumpets with a yellow throat, very floriferous. Freaking gorgeous.
- NOTE: The Heliconia Society International shows a yellow-flowered species as this one, which is most certainly a mistake.
TWO VARIETIES: David Skinner writes, “Comprises 2 vars.: - var. fissiligulatus; - var. major Gagnep. with longer ligule, blade 20-22x7-12 cm, lower bracts 11-20 cm long.”
HISTORY: David Skinner writes, “Accession R3311 is from Glenn Stokes, Stokes Tropicals. Glenn received a plant from John Banta and propagated it for sale [and named it] as 'African Princess'.“
CULTURE: David Skinner writes, "I have been growing it for a couple of years now and it is one of the easiest Costus to grow and bring to flower." 
- LIGHT: Shade.
- SOIL: Rich soil.
- WATER: Regular watering.
- NOTES: Easy to grow with similar needs as most gingers.
Ease of growth
Does well in Containers
 Top Tropicals Nursery
 Gingers R Us, David Skinner
 Zone 9 Tropicals.
 African Plants database
 chchen on flickr