Definition of curcuma in English:



  • A tropical Asian plant of a genus that includes turmeric, zedoary, and other species that yield spices, dyes, and medicinal products.

    Genus Curcuma, family Zingiberaceae

    • ‘The curcumas of the ginger family are natives of tropical Asia.’
    • ‘We have imported a number of varieties from Asia: alpinias, costus, curcumas and hedychiums.’
    • ‘Extracted from the roots of the curcuma longa plant, curcumin is a member of the ginger family.’
    • ‘Most curcumas do well in a shady or diffused light location on the landscape or as a patio plant in a decorative container.’
    • ‘Remember that curcumas do not emerge from dormancy until June… they are not dead!’


Modern Latin, from Arabic kurkum ‘saffron’, from Sanskrit kuṅkuma (so named because the colour of the spices resembles that of saffron).