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Species Bananas Discussions of all the different wild species of banana (non edible), an aspect of the hobby that deserves its own section.


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Old 01-13-2009, 07:03 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Ensete superbum (seeds labeled as Ensete perrieri)

I ordered 100 seeds of Ensete perrieri from RPS and they arrived in June 2007.
The seeds were large, hard like a stone, and covered in pockmarks. About 1/3 of them germinated and were kept in containers until April/May 2008 when I started planting them in the ground. Here are a few photos taken today (8 months after planting). Is anyone else growing these? Can anyone confirm if they are E. perrieri?

This was the size of the plants in Spring 2008 before planting in the ground


8 months later (the same plant shown above)


Here are a few photos I took today. I planted these along a hillside and I am not providing any supplemental watering during the dry season (December to April). During the rainy season (May to November) we get approx 150-200 inches of rain per year which means the soil stays wet for 7 months or more of the year. Some of these plants are more shaded than others.



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Old 01-13-2009, 07:07 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: Ensete perrieri





My smallest plant (shaded by a large clump of dessert bananas).


and the top view
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Old 01-13-2009, 07:18 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: Ensete perrieri






The descriptions I have read say that the midribs on E. perrieri are yellow, yet on most of these plants, the yellow fades to dark orange or light red in the middle of the leaf and then hold the color through to the tip.


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Old 01-13-2009, 07:21 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: Ensete perrieri

Jeff, thank you for clarifying that. When I get one to sprout, I will be ecstatic! When I finally get an ingens to sprout, THAT will be a cause for a huge celebration!!!
I am so glad that you posted these E. perrieri photos - they give me renewed hope and energy.
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Old 01-13-2009, 07:39 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Default Re: Ensete perrieri

Glad you liked them Scot! I wish I could find someone growing these who could confirm their id. There is very little information or photos available on the internet to see what these look like at different stages of growth.
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Old 01-13-2009, 08:20 PM   #6 (permalink)
 
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Default Re: Ensete perrieri

Whatever they are, they are lovely.
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Old 01-14-2009, 10:08 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Joy Re: Ensete perrieri

Yo Jeff,
Your post is truly an absolute inspiration!

Mucho gracias! This is something I have yet to get my hands on as I was late on the orders from rps. I will definitely get a lot 100 sds the next time they offer it. Currently I have loads of fun with 50+ seedlings of the Ensete livingstonianum which I germinated from rps.
Please keep us posted of their progress.
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Old 01-14-2009, 11:04 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Default Re: Ensete perrieri

Well, they certainly look a lot more like Ensete superbum than I would have thought. I thought that E. perrieri was a bit taller, like E. glaucum. You'll know when they flower. Excellent pics though! Thanks for posting them.

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Old 01-15-2009, 12:08 AM   #9 (permalink)
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Default Re: Ensete perrieri

Thanks everyone.

Hi Frank, E. perrieri is supposed to be closely related to E. ventricosum. The only difference (other than the flower) is that the mid-ribs are supposed to be yellow/green instead of red/purple like ventricosum. My plants definitely do not have the dark red/purple color in the mid-rib but rather start off green at the base and then fade to yellow and then orange part way up the leaf. I don't know much about E. superbum so it's hard for me to make a comparison. I tried growing a couple different kinds of Ensete in Florida but they always died on me so I gave up on them.

These plants still may get taller. The first year they gained some height but mainly the base expanded and got really wide on each of them. I was hoping that once the base enlarged like that, they would start growing taller. I guess only time will tell.
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Old 01-15-2009, 10:59 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Default Re: Ensete perrieri

Excellent work Jeff, very good photos! About this kind of really very few information.
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Old 01-16-2009, 08:11 PM   #11 (permalink)
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Default Re: Ensete perrieri

Thanks Andrei, it will be interesting to watch these plants mature. I will photograph them periodically and keep everyone updated on their progress.
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Old 01-18-2009, 10:22 PM   #12 (permalink)
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Default Re: Ensete perrieri

A night shot

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Old 01-18-2009, 11:25 PM   #13 (permalink)
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Default Re: Ensete perrieri

Awesome!
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Old 01-19-2009, 12:35 AM   #14 (permalink)
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Default Re: Ensete perrieri

Stunning! From the photos I have seen, the E. glaucum and E. perrieri blossoms look quite similar too. Of course, I don't have a trained eye yet.
I really hope they are E. perrieri.
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Old 01-19-2009, 09:58 AM   #15 (permalink)
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Default Re: Ensete perrieri

Awesome photos, Jeff! Growth rate is phenomenal as well.

I also like the heliconia blooming in the background of one of your photos. Thanks for sharing.
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Old 01-19-2009, 02:33 PM   #16 (permalink)
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Default Re: Ensete perrieri

Like Brent said the growth rate in such a short time is amazing. I have tried a few times with seed but so far no good.

Some seeds on U.S Ebay at the moment.
EXOTIC ENSETE PERRIERI MADAGASCAR BANANA TREE SEEDS WOW on eBay, also Plants, Seeds Bulbs, Gardening Plants, Yard, Garden Outdoor Living, Home Garden (end time 15-Feb-09 23:23:47 GMT)

Bit pricey though.
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Old 01-19-2009, 02:45 PM   #17 (permalink)
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Joy Re: Ensete perrieri

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mark Hall View Post
Like Brent said the growth rate in such a short time is amazing. I have tried a few times with seed but so far no good.
Mark, I think it applies to all Ensete grown in the right condition. My first sp is the E superbum. The moment it took off, I get 1 new leaf everyday! Yes, 1 per day! I was of course baby-ing it like crazy, 3-4 times watering daily and fert every wk or more.

Sine then, I have germinated E ventricosum, E glaucum and E livingstonianum. I grow them in very porous burnt top soil. Within 1 month of germn, I started feed them sheep dung processed fert from NZ every week. They are now giving me 1 new leaf every 2 days. I guess they really crave heat and water and lots of food.

They all took an average of 12 days to germinate at a day temp of approx 100F and night at low 90F.
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Old 01-19-2009, 08:12 PM   #18 (permalink)
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Default Re: Ensete perrieri

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mark Hall View Post
Like Brent said the growth rate in such a short time is amazing. I have tried a few times with seed but so far no good.

Some seeds on U.S Ebay at the moment.
EXOTIC ENSETE PERRIERI MADAGASCAR BANANA TREE SEEDS WOW on eBay, also Plants, Seeds Bulbs, Gardening Plants, Yard, Garden Outdoor Living, Home Garden (end time 15-Feb-09 23:23:47 GMT)

Bit pricey though.
Mark, thanks for the link. It seems odd that this ebay seller is using the photos from the RPS website and is claiming that this is the very first introduction into cultivation. Toby offered seeds almost two years ago.
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Old 01-19-2009, 08:22 PM   #19 (permalink)
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Default Re: Ensete perrieri

What exactly did you do to germinate yours?
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Old 01-19-2009, 11:12 PM   #20 (permalink)
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Default Re: Ensete perrieri

Quote:
Originally Posted by MediaHound View Post
What exactly did you do to germinate yours?
Hi Jarred, I soaked the seeds in water for almost a week (maybe a little less) changing the water daily. At the time I received the seeds, I didn't have any germinating medium on hand (I now use ground coconut fiber but I couldn't find it at the time) so I put some regular bagged soil into one of those large rectangular disposable food storage containers, laid the seeds on top, sprayed them with some water, and snapped the lid on. The container kept it moist inside and within a few months they started germinating. I didn't provide bottom heat, they were exposed to normal fluctuating temperatures in my house from about 70 degrees at night to around 84 during the day. I don't have air conditioning at my house, but I have many screened areas to keep the air moving through.
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