Bitter ginger (Zingiber zerumbet) belongs to the Zingerberaceae (the Ginger family). It is a perennial herb that is native from India to South East Asia. It was also introduced to the Hawaiian Islands by early Polynesian settlers, and called "Awapuhi" in Hawaiian. The stems are upright and can reach about 1.2 m in height. The leaves are 10-12 blade-shaped, 15-20 cm long, and arranged in alternate. The conical or club-shaped flower heads are borne in the summer. As the flower heads mature, they gradually fill with an aromatic, slimy liquid and turn a brighter red color. The rhizomes of this plant have been used as food flavoring and appetizers in various cuisines while the rhizome extracts have been used in herbal medicine. From fall until spring it goes dormant.