Musa itinerans var. lechangensis

Family: Musaceae   

Common Name: None known

Cold Hardiness Zone: 9b     View the UK and US zone maps

Musa itinerans var. lechangensis Information

Plant normal, suckering close to parent plant 10-30 cm, to 4 suckers, position vertical; mature pseudostem to 4 m high, to 15 cm diam. at base, covered with varying amounts of dead brown leaf sheaths, underlying colour light green with purple blotches, shiny, sap watery milky. Petiole to 45 cm, petiole canal open with margins spreading, petiole bases not winged and not clasping the pseudostem with corrugated auricles and small black-purple blotches; leaf habit drooping, lamina to 260 x 54 cm, narrowly elliptic, truncate at apex, dark green adaxially, light green abaxially, appearance shiny, surface sparsely covered with wax coating, leaf bases symmetric, both sides rounded and auriculate, midrib dorsally light green and ventrally yellow, with very corrugated lamina. Inflorescence semi-pendulous and then falling vertically downward, peduncle to 30 cm, to 4 cm diam., glabrous, dark green, sterile bracts 2, bracts deciduous at opening of first female flowers. Female bud obtuse, to 26 x 10 cm, bracts dark redpurple externally, bright yellow internally, with sparse wax outside, not imbricate, lifting several bracts at a time, these not revolute before falling; basal flowers female, ca. 12 cm, ovary pale green, arrangement of ovules in 4 rows per locule, compound tepal ca. 5.8 cm, with 2 prominent thickened keels and hyaline margins, cream, free tepal ca. 3.1 cm, ovoid, translucent white with thickened keel; stamens 6, without fertile pollen, ca. 2 cm, brown, stigma ca. 0.8 cm diam., cream. Male bud rounded, ca. 12 x 10 cm, bracts dark red-purple; male flowers on average 15 per bract in 2 rows, falling with the bract, compound tepal ca. 5.5 cm, cream with 2 thickened keels, ribbed at the dorsal angles, with 5-toothed orange apex, central lobes smaller than outer lobes, free tepal ca. 2 cm, translucent white, ovoid, smooth, with thread-like apex; stamens 5, filaments white, anthers brown, anthers exserted, style inserted; stigma cream; ovary arched, cream. Fruit bunch lax, with 3 hands and 15 fruits per hand on average, in 2 rows, fingers pointed outward from the stalk, individual fruit ca. 8 cm, straight, pronounced ridges, pedicel ca. 2.5 cm, glabrous, fruit apex almost rounded, with no floral relicts, immature fruit peel pale green, becoming pale yellow at maturity, immature fruit pulp white, becoming cream to brown and soft at maturity; seeds wrinkled, ca. 5 mm diam., 200 to 220 seeds per fruit.

General Information:
Interestingly only a few individual plants, these were without any frost damage in April. It is notable that all of the wild and cultivated plants of variety guangdongensis in adjacent areas had severe frost damage during the previous winter (2005-2006), despite being located in a subtropical region at a rather low elevation (300 to 500 m) (Hakkinen, pers. obs.).


Native to, China

Found only in one ravine, in Beixiang in north Guangdong, China.

Location: China (25.210505°N, 113.369125°E)

Map may not represent the complete natural distribution. (Markers display observation data).

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