Ensete superbum

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Ensete superbum
Ensete superbum.jpg
Ensete superbum at the United States Botanic Garden
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Plantae
(unranked): Angiosperms
(unranked): Monocots
(unranked): Commelinids
Order: Zingiberales
Family: Musaceae
Genus: Ensete
Species: E. superbum
Binomial name
Ensete superbum
Roxb. (1814)[1]

Ensete superbum is a species of banana from India.[2]


The plant is well-known from the Western Ghats, Anaimalai Hills, some other South Indian hills in Dindigul and other parts of the peninsular India. It has also been recorded from Jhadol and Ogna forest ranges in Rajastan, North India.[3] There are also reports of a similar species in Thailand, but it is yet to be formally described.[4]


A page from William Roxburgh's Plants of the Coast of Coromandel, Vol. 3 with drawings of Ensete superbum

Plants may grow up to 12 ft in height and the pseudostem may be up to half the height with a swollen base of up to 8 ft in circumference at the base. The leaves are bright green in colour on both sides with a deeply grooved and short petiole. The leaf sheaths are persistent at the base and leave closely set scars on the corm. The fruits are about 3 inches long and more or less triangular with dark brown seeds. The upper parts of the plant die out during the dry season leaving the corm, which forms new leaves at the beginning of the monsoon.[4]


  1. ^ Roxburgh, W. (1814) Hortus Bengalensis 19: 19
  2. ^ USDA, ARS, National Genetic Resources Program. Germplasm Resources Information Network - (GRIN) [Online Database]. National Germplasm Resources Laboratory, Beltsville, Maryland. Website [Accessed on 11 June 2008]
  3. ^ Sharma, S.K. (1996). "Presence of Wild Plantain (Ensete superbum) in Rajasthan". Journal of the Bombay Natural History Society 93 (2): 322–323. 
  4. ^ a b Constantine, D. (1999) The Musaceae — an annotated list of the species of Ensete, Musa and Musella. Website [Internet - Accessed on 11th June, 2008]

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