Musa coccinea

Musa coccinea

Musa coccinea or Red Dwarf Banana is native of Indochina but now spread over tropical Asia and South America.

This is a very easy plant to grow indoors and the flowering is magnificent and long lasting.

Best grown in a container, it can spend the summer outdoors but has to overwinter frost free.

Description:

Musa coccinea produces numerous suckers.

The pseudostem is 1-2 m high.

Petiole is 30-50 cm long, winged. The leaf is yellow-green on top and light yellow-green underneath, oblong, up to 2 m long and 80 cm wide, asymmetric.

The upright inflorescence has bright red bracts. There are six floral bracts, in 1 row.

The fruits are orange when ripe, 10-12 cm long and 4 cm bred. They contain numerous seeds.

Usage:

Ornamental, cut flowers

Nomenclature:

Common name:

Red dwarf banana

Synonym:

Musa uranoscopos

Etymology:

Musa: from the Greek mousa (banana)
Coccinea: from the Latin coccineus (scarlet)

Origin:

Indochina

Habitat:

Ravines and slopes, also grown in gardens, 0-600 m



Hardiness :

USDA zone 10-11

Care:

Soil:

Nutritious, draining

Exposure:

Sun, partial shade, shade

Water:

Needs plenty of water during growing season

Fertilizer:

Fertilize weekly during growing season

Pot:

Grow in container and keep frost free during the winter

Propagation:

Seed, suckers

Sowing instructions:

  • soak the seeds for 1-2 days in tepid water
  • sow in a light substrate
  • moisten
  • maintain a constant temperature between 20 °C and 25 °C
  • germination: a few weeks to a few months
  • repot when the seedlings are big enough to handle

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