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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 10-17-2006, 02:31 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Musa Formosana = Musa Basjoo?

Some people say Musa Formosana is musa basjoo.

Now, the englishmen at Kew(?) has given musa formosana species status.

Would this be correct? What then, are the differences between them?
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Old 10-17-2006, 02:37 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: Musa Formosana = Musa Basjoo?

I believe that it is Musa basjoo ssp or var formosana. Gabe can clarify, but I believe I have discussed this with him off-board in the past. It is from Taiwan I believe, as Formosana ( IE from Formosa, which is Taiwan) would lead me to believe.

Zac

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Old 10-17-2006, 05:42 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: Musa Formosana = Musa Basjoo?

As you probably know Erlend I am the collector of all the commercially available Musa formosana seed currently available, as far as I've seen.
I collect the seed myself directly from habitat in Taiwan.
I'm not going to argue if it is a separate species or not. All I can say is that Musa formosana and Musa basjoo are very similar and are almost certainly of the same decent. Musa formosana generally grows much taller, the average height of fruiting plants in habitat is about 15 - 20 feet tall.
All the seed I'm supplying these days all come from the same area - high altitude central Taiwan. However, some collections that I made over 3 years ago came from 3 separate regions. One from high altitude northern Taiwan, another from very low altitude south Taiwan, and the one from high central Taiwan. None of these seeds were distributed, I grew all of them here in the nursery in Cornwall. I wanted to see if there were marked differences in cold-hardiness between the 3 and also Musa basjoo from Ryukyu Japan. As yet inconclusive.
Of the 3, the southern one produced the best germination rates, and was the tallest, but I've opted for the central one to supply the seed. I have now arranged a local collector there to supply the seed.
I won't be back in Taiwan until next year now, but I'll be looking for Musa Insularimontana on Lan yu island on my next Taiwan expedition.

Phil
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Old 10-17-2006, 10:53 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: Musa Formosana = Musa Basjoo?

Last timed I checked it was reduced to a variety, as in Musa basjoo var. formosana. Musa insularimontana is very poorly known and is closely allied with Musa textilis.
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Old 10-18-2006, 03:12 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Default Re: Musa Formosana = Musa Basjoo?

Interestingly Kew now have it as Musa formosana, but it is not an accepted name by Kew. They think it should be named Musa basjoo var. formosana (Warb.) S.S.Ying, Mem. Coll. Agric. Natl. Taiwan Univ. 25: 100 (1985).
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Old 10-18-2006, 04:10 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Default Re: Musa Formosana = Musa Basjoo?

The formosana seeds from Trebrown were excellent, and had a very good germination %. So far the small plants have 3-4 leaves. Not showing any special characteristics just yet. The small leaves are kind of glaucus above, very different from sikkimensis seedlings with shiny leaves and faster growth.

How many other official varieties of Musa Basjoo are there? There has been talk about "Sapporo" and "Shakalin" to the point of urban legend.
As I said earlier, the musa basjoos I have bought at garden centres this year have not impressed me in terms of growth, overall look, or vigour. Other species from seed look great.
I am very excited about these seed-grown formosona plants. I suspect some basjoos in european garden centres these days are tissue cultured over several generations. Maybe seed-grown plants will be more vigourous and look more healthy.

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Old 10-18-2006, 05:41 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Default Re: Musa Formosana = Musa Basjoo?

Hello,

I have been watching for long but this is my first post.
I keep three different forms of M. basjoo that have distinctive characters

- Musa basjoo 'regular'
- Musa basjoo 'Shakalin' (lower and with wider leaves)
- Musa basjoo 'rubra' (with reddish steam) Attachment 58

I have also seen Musa 'Burmese Blue' mentioned as part of the basjoo complex, but I think Gabe has included it in the M. itinerans group

I ordered today some seeds of Musa formosana, let see how they look like
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Old 10-18-2006, 05:54 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Default Re: Musa Formosana = Musa Basjoo?

Barna, yes 'Burmese Blue' is Musa itinerans var guangdongensis.

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Old 02-20-2007, 08:45 AM   #9 (permalink)
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Default Re: Musa Formosana = Musa Basjoo?

An update on my formosana seedlings: Seems most of them share typical characteristics of regular m. basjoo, (Red midribs, "waves" on the surface of the leaves, wings on the petioles, and green stems) but var. formosana also has quite alot of powder under the leaves and on the stems. I can't remember seeing powder on regular musa basjoo. The stems are also quite thick, wich I don't see in seedlings of the same height. I can't wait to get these in the ground, they will be the majestys of the north if they are as cold hardy as regular basjoo.

They are not the fastest growers- quite average, and the biggest ones are now about a foot tall. For comparison, musa flaviflora, musa cheesmani, and musa balbisiana are all faster growers.
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Old 02-20-2007, 02:25 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Default Re: Musa Formosana = Musa Basjoo?

Erland I was looking at some bananas on sunday at jungle gardens and peter showed me some plants that he bought as basjoo. He noticed that the leaves were twice as wide with a chalky white powder underneath also the ribbing on the leaf was narrower than the normal basjoo . do you think this would be the Sakhalin form or the formosana ? What ever they are I want one .
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Old 02-20-2007, 06:53 PM   #11 (permalink)
 
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Default Re: Musa Formosana = Musa Basjoo?

Hello Erlend & Mark,

As far as I know, all Basjoos produce no chalky white powder on anywhere
else and the colour of the buds are dark yellow insted of purple-red as other
musas. This is so far the easiest way of identifying of Basjoo and other
musas. This can be applied to Ryukyu Basjoos, Musa Hokkaidou, Musa
Sakhalin etc.
Am I wrong?

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Old 02-21-2007, 06:29 PM   #12 (permalink)
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Default Re: Musa Formosana = Musa Basjoo?

http://www.bananas.org/wiki/Musa_basjoo
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Old 02-22-2007, 01:12 AM   #13 (permalink)
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Default Re: Musa Formosana = Musa Basjoo?

Stan, what is Musa Hokkaidou? Is it the same as Musa Basjoo "Sapporro"?
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Old 02-22-2007, 04:29 AM   #14 (permalink)
 
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Default Re: Musa Formosana = Musa Basjoo?

Erlend!

Yes, exactly it is the Musa Basjoo Sapporo which could be the cold-hardiest
of all Basjoos planted in Jpan. Hokaidou is the northest island where Musa
Basjoo Sapporo was found.
Musa Basjoo Sakhalin was found on Sakhalin island of Russia about 100Km
north to Hokaidou, so it is said it is a little bit hardier than Sapporo.

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Old 02-22-2007, 08:36 AM   #15 (permalink)
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Default Re: Musa Formosana = Musa Basjoo?

Stan, do many people on Hokkaidou island in Japan grow Musa Basjoo? If so, do they usually protect them, or do they let them die down to start new each year? I have seen that Sapporro can get really cold in the winter.

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Old 02-22-2007, 06:07 PM   #16 (permalink)
 
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Default Re: Musa Formosana = Musa Basjoo?

Erlend!

So called Basjoo is planted wild everywhere in Japan and little people worries
about its overwintering. So only cold anxious people would protect them in
winter, but the most majority people leaves them as they overwinter them-
selves.
Basjoo is peacefully(??) overwintering even under the snow in Hokkaidou.

Stan
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Old 02-25-2007, 11:28 AM   #17 (permalink)
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Default Re: Musa Formosana = Musa Basjoo?

Quote:
Erlend!

So called Basjoo is planted wild everywhere in Japan and little people worries
about its overwintering. So only cold anxious people would protect them in
winter, but the most majority people leaves them as they overwinter them-
selves.
Basjoo is peacefully(??) overwintering even under the snow in Hokkaidou.

Stan
But the stems die down then, right? The plant starts from the ground next spring?

Erlend
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Old 02-25-2007, 06:14 PM   #18 (permalink)
 
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Default Re: Musa Formosana = Musa Basjoo?

Erlend!

The answer is yes/or/no. It depends on the location where it is planted.
Where it is cold and dry in the northern parts of Japan, stem would die
down, and a new start begins next spring. but even though it is cold, where
it snows and lies and is rather wet, it could keep green due to the protection
by snow cover.
In my place of zone 9, pseudostem stands up with leaves and petioles dried
up.

Stan
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Old 07-23-2007, 03:20 PM   #19 (permalink)
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Default Re: Musa Formosana = Musa Basjoo?

Anyone have any good photos of formosana? Most of mine are still small, since they are in the greenhouse in pots. (Due to contractors tearing up the yard!)
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Old 07-25-2007, 06:05 PM   #20 (permalink)
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Default Re: Musa Formosana = Musa Basjoo?

Erlend, mine are still pretty small too, but I took a few pics today. This one is the largest. Nice rain we got today too!



Waxy pseudostem you talked about:



Leaf closeup:

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