Musa x arakanensis

Musa x aranakensis F. W. Ripley ex A. H. Blechynden, Journal of the Agricultural and Horticultural Society of India 5 (1): 53 (1856).
Musa x arakanensis F. W. Ripley Proceed. Agri.-Hort. Soc. Ind., 10 : 50 - 51 (1859).
Musa x arakanensis F. W. Ripley ex J. G. Baker, In: J. D. Hooker, Flora of British India 5 (1): 263 (1894).
Musa x aracanensis F. W. Ridley ex E. De Wildeman , Annales du Musée Colonial de Marseille 10: 286 - 362. (1912).

Accepted name none - an undetermined cultivated banana


Musa x paradisiaca L., Species Plantarum : 1043 (1753).

Authorities drc
Distribution Arakan (Myanmar-Burma).
References Baker 1894b, Blechynden 1856, De Wildeman 1912 : 39, Kurz 1877 : 145, Ripley 1859 (not seen).

Published as Musa arakanensis the "x" is added to indicate its presumed hybridity.  In this context Musa x paradisiaca is effectively the same as "an undetermined cultivated banana".  This should not be read as implying that Musa x arakanensis is Musa (AAB group) 'French' plantain, Cheesman's identification of Musa x paradisiaca L. (Cheesman 1948).

Named Musa arakanensis by Capt. F. W. Ripley this is the Arracan plantain material of which was forwarded by Ripley to the Agri-Horticultural Gardens in Calcutta for evaluation as a fibre plant (Kurz 1877).  In Ripley's own garden it also bore particularly fine fruit.  The plant was commented on by Blechynden who mis-spelled the name.  Blechynden's paper started with a "List of sundry specimens of Fibre received by the Agricultural and Horticultural Society from November 1855, to April 1856". First in this list on page 53 was "Specimens from Arracan forwarded by Lieut. [sic] F. W. Ripley, Asst. Commissioner". Item B4 of Ripley's specimens was "Plantain fibre from Musa Aranakensis". On page 57 there is an "Extract of a letter from Capt. F. W. Ripley, Sandoway dated December 8th 1855" in which Ripley notes that "B4 is a small parcel of the fibre of the Arracan Plantain". And on page 61 there is a "Report on Foregoing Specimens" by W. Thompson also signed by W. Haworth which notes "B4. "Plantain fibre". A poor fibre, very harsh, brittle and weak. Of no appreciable value as an article of export." De Wildeman 1912 provides yet another spelling, Musa aracanensis, and transmogrifies Ripley into Ridley.

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last updated 04/09/2008