Musa acuminata subsp. zebrina

Musa acuminata L. A. Colla subsp. zebrina (L. B. Van Houtte ex J. . Planchon, Fl. Serres Jard. Eur. 10: 223 (1855)) author not known to me, nomen nudum?

Accepted name Musa acuminata L. A. Colla var. zebrina (L. B. Van Houtte ex J. . Planchon) R. E. Nasution, Memoirs of Tokyo University of Agriculture. 32: 1 - 122 (1991). not seen


Musa acuminata subsp. acuminata.

Musa zebrina J. . Planchon Fl. Serres Jard. Eur. 10: 223 (1855).
Musa zebrina L. B. Van Houtte ex J. . Planchon Fl. Serres Jard. Eur. 10: 223 (1855).


The author of subsp. zebrina is not known to me.  It has possibly been formalised by Nasution but whether as a subspecies or varietas I do not know.

The World Checklist of Monocotyledons lists Musa zebrina Van Houtte ex Planch., Fl. Serres Jard. Eur. 10: 223 (1855) as a synonym of Musa acuminata subsp. acuminata [no author cited] which is given as the accepted name.


Eumusa (Musa) 1


Java (Buitenzorg form).  See map at Musa acuminata.




Daniells et al 2001: ix, Jarret 1987, Karamura 1998 : 10, Nasution 1991 (not seen), Pollefys et al 2004, Shepherd 1999 : 17, Simmonds 1956 : 466, Simmonds 1960, Valmayor et al 2002.

Comments This is a Javanese form (the "Buitenzorg form") of M. acuminata and close to Musa acuminata subsp. malaccensis from Peninsula Malaysia and Sumatra.

It is remarkable that such a well known subspecies should never have been formally published or if it has I do not know the author.

Karamura (1998) lists this as nomen nudum.  The taxon is treated by Nasution (1990) in his study of intraspecific taxa of Musa acuminata in Indonesia.  I have not seen Nasution (1990) but from Pollefys et al 2004 I am unsure whether Nasution treats this as a subspecies or varietas.  Pollefys et al state that Nasution (1991 [sic]) lists zebrina as a varietas (table 6, p. 15) but comment that it is usually referred to as a subspecies. In Appendix C. Pollefys et al list zebrina as a subspecies citing Nasution (1991[sic]).  Valmayor et al 2002 (p.1 - 2) also list the plant as "Musa acuminata Colla subsp. zebrina (v. Houtte) Nasution".  See comments at Musa acuminata.

Like "sumatrana", "zebrina is used rather indiscriminately in horticulture as a species, variety or cultivar name for extremely attractive foliage plants with with leaves more or less striped adaxially with purple red and more or less suffused with purple red abaxially (pictures here or

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last updated 02/05/2008