Name: Japanese Banana (Musa basjoo)
Other names: Japanese fibre banana, or hardy banana
Higher classification: Banana
Description: Musa basjoo is a herbaceous perennial with trunk-like pseudostems[a] growing to around 2–2.5 m (6.6–8.2 ft), with a crown of mid-green leaves growing up to 2 m (6.6 ft) long and 70 cm (28 in) wide when mature. The species produces male and female flowers on the same inflorescence which may extend for over 1 m (3.3 ft). The banana fruit formed are yellow-green, around 5–10 cm (2.0–3.9 in) long and 2–3 cm (0.79–1.18 in) broad; they are inedible, with sparse white pulp and many black seeds.
Distribution: It was previously thought to have originated in the Ryukyu islands of southern Japan, from where it was first described in cultivation, but is now known to have originated in subtropical southern China, where it is also widely cultivated, with wild populations found in Sichuan province.
Uses: In traditional Chinese medicine, the stem, flower, leaves and rhizome of Musa basjoo are considered useful for clearing heat-toxins, quenching thirst and disinhibiting urine.
Dymadex's entries on plants, living organism of the kind exemplified by trees, shrubs, herbs, grasses, ferns, and mosses.
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