Musa acuminata Colla
  • Colla, Mem. Reale Accad. Sci. Torino 25: 394 (1820)

This taxon is accepted by WCS higher taxonomy

General Description

Pseudostems heavily blotched with brown or black. Petioles: margins of adaxial groove erect, winged proximally. Inflorescences: pedicels short; bracts of staminate flowers lanceolate or narrowly ovate, apex acute, abaxial surface yellow, red, or dull purple, adaxial surface yellow proximally, often yellow or dull purple distally. Staminate flowers white or cream. Pistillate flowers: stigmas deep yellow or orange; each locule with 2 regular rows of ovules.

Giant herb arising from a short horizontal branching rhizome. Pseudostems formed from the overlapping leaf-bases, up to 5 m. high, usually less than 25 cm. in diameter. Leaf-blades oblong-lanceolate, to 2-2.5 × 0.4-0.6 m., apex truncate, base rounded, petiole and midrib green, somewhat glaucous. Inflorescence appearing from the top of the pseudostem, horizontal or deflexed; peduncle pubescent. Bracts of the ? part of the inflorescence red, quickly deciduous, each subtending ± 20 flowers. Outer 3-lobed tepal of ? flowers 3.5-4.5 cm. long and ± 1.2 cm. wide, yellow above; inner tepal ± 1.5-2 cm. long, the apiculum 1-2 mm. long; stamens 5, 4-5 cm. long. Bracts of the ? part of the inflorescence red, deciduous, each subtending up to 16 flowers. Outer 3-lobed tepal ± 2.5 cm. long, yellow at the apex; free tepal ± 1.5 cm. long, translucent; ovary glabrous, or partially or entirely pubescent. Fruits 10-20 in each group, each 8-13 cm. long, 1.5-3 cm. in diameter, first green but becoming yellow when fully ripe. Seeds irregularly depressed-spherical, 6-7 × 3 mm., dull black.


HAB. Swamp-forest; sea-level

Abandoned gardens and disturbed sites; 0--10 m.


Introduced Florida.; Mexico, West Indies, Central America; and South America. Native, s Asia; Africa; Pacific Islands (Oceania).

Tanzania Ngezi Forest, 11 Dec. 1930, Greenway 2698! (Simmonds & Shepherd (1952) also mention material from Funzi I. and Weti [Wete], both on Pemba)


Mem. Gen. Musa: 66 (1820); Cheesman in K.B. 3: 17-28 (1948); U.O.P.Z.: 359 (photo. opp.), 373 (1949); Simm. in KB. 14: 198-204 (1960); Simm. & Sheph. in Nature 169: 507, 508 (1952).

Distribution Map

  • Native distribution
  • Introduced distribution
Found in
  • Africa East Tropical Africa Tanzania
  • Asia-Temperate China China South-Central
  • China Southeast
  • Asia-Tropical Indian Subcontinent India
  • Sri Lanka
  • Indo-China Andaman Is.
  • Myanmar
  • Nicobar Is.
  • Thailand
  • Vietnam
  • Malesia Borneo
  • Jawa
  • Malaya
  • Philippines
  • Sulawesi
  • Sumatera
Introduced into
  • Africa Macaronesia Canary Is.
  • West Tropical Africa Senegal
  • Asia-Temperate Western Asia Turkey
  • Europe Southwestern Europe Spain
  • Northern America Southeastern U.S.A. Florida
  • Pacific Southwestern Pacific Fiji
  • Niue
  • Southern America Central America Costa Rica
  • Southern South America Juan Fernández Is.
  • Western South America Ecuador


  • 1 Häkkinen, M. & Väre, H. (2008). Typification and check-list of Musa L. names (Musaceae) with nomenclatural notes. Adansonia , III, 30: 63-112.
  • 2 Nelson Sutherland, C.H. (2008). Catálogo de las plantes vasculares de Honduras. Espermatofitas: 1-1576. SERNA/Guaymuras, Tegucigalpa, Honduras.
  • 3 Pandey, R.P. & Dilwakar, P.G. (2008). An integrated check-list flora of Andaman and Nicobar islands, India. Journal of Economic and Taxonomic Botany 32: 403-500.
  • 4 Govaerts, R. (2004). World Checklist of Monocotyledons Database in ACCESS: 1-54382. The Board of Trustees of the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew.
  • 5 Albano, P.-O. (2003). La Conaissance des Plantes Exotiques: 1-324. Édisud, Aix-en-Provence.
  • 6 J.M.Lock (1993) Musaceae. Flora of Tropical East Africa 0 (0)
  • 7 Berhaut, J. (1988). Flore illustrée du Sénégal 9: 1-522. Gouvernement du Sénégal, Ministère du développement rural direction des eaux et forêta, Dakar.
  • 8 Smith, A.C. (1979). Flora Vitiensis Nova. A new flora for Fiji (Spermatophytes only) 1: 1-495. Pacific Tropical Botanical Garden, Lawai.
  • 9 Whittemore, A.T. Musaceae. Flora of North America: north of Mexico. New York. 22: Magnoliophyta: Alismatidae Arecidae, Commelinidae (in Part), and Zingiberidae, (2000).

 Information From

Flora of Tropical East Africa
Flora of Tropical East Africa. Published on the Internet;
WCS higher taxonomy
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World Checklist of Selected Plant Families
WCSP 2014. 'World Checklist of Selected Plant Families. Facilitated by the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew. Published on the Internet; Retrieved 2011 onwards
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