Musa holstii

Musa holstii K. M. Schumann, in A. Engler, Botanische Jahrbuecher. 34: 121-124 (1905).

Accepted name Ensete ventricosum (F. M. J. Welwitsch) E. E. Cheesman, Kew Bulletin 2 (2): 101 (1947) and R. E. D. Baker & N. W. Simmonds, Kew Bulletin 8 (3): 405 (1953) with correction in Kew Bulletin 8 (4): 574 (1953).
Synonyms Ensete holstii (K. M. Schumann) E. E. Cheesman, Kew Bulletin 2 (2): 103 (1947).
Authorities The authority for the accepted name is Baker & Simmonds 1953 as corrected (see below).

The synonym is from Cheesman 1947a.

The World Checklist of Monocotyledons gives Musa holstii K.Schum., Bot. Jahrb. Syst. 34: 121 (1904) as a synonym of Ensete holstii (K.Schum.) Cheesman, Kew Bull. 2: 103 (1947 publ. 1948) itself a synonym of Ensete ventricosum (Welw.) Cheesman, Kew Bull. 2: 101 (1947 publ. 1948) which is listed as an accepted name.

Distribution East Africa, West Usambara mountains (North-East Tanzania).
Description Plant three or four times as high as a man. Leaves 16 ft. long by 3 ft., and more, broad. Inflorescence very large, drooping. Upper bracts covering the male flowers, long persistent. Male flowers, about in. long, stalked ; perianth more or less deeply three-lobed, lobes linear, hooded at apex ; free petal with three or sometimes five lobes, the middle lobe oval-shaped, lateral toothed. Fruit pear-shaped about 4 in. long by 2 in. broad. Seeds very large, about in. broad.

(Fawcett 1913, Baker & Simmonds 1953).
References Baker & Simmonds 1953: 413-414, Cheesman 1947a: 103, Fawcett 1913: 273-274, Lock 1993, Mobot Tropicos, RHS 1956, Uphof 1968.
Comments This was one of a number of African Musa transferred to Ensete by Cheesman in his 1947 paper reviving the genus Ensete. It was later reduced to a synonym of Ensete ventricosum by Baker & Simmonds 1953 as corrected (please refer to R. E. D. Baker & N. W. Simmonds, Kew Bulletin 8 (4): 574 (1953)).  It is now recognised that there are no wild Musa native to Africa, only Ensete.

Introduced to U.K. horticulture (as Musa holstii) about 1905 (RHS 1956).

Type (holo?+ B) in A. Engler, Reise nach Sued- und Ostafrika, no. 2254, West Usambara, Tanganyika, 25-9-1902.

Isotype in Herb. Kew and Herb. Mus. Brit.


There are two external images of Musa holstii on the Aluka website

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last updated 30/04/2008