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Ensete superbum

This beautiful, very large ornamental banana from India has a bottle-shaped, blueish, waxy (pseudo-)trunk and enormous leaves. It is suitable for cultivation in both tropical and subtropical areas. Seeds are rarely offered and sought after by collectors.

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germination comments by our visitors
For general germination instructions click here.

Also see plant cultivation comments below.

Seeds from this species ...

... are very easy to germinate and need up to 1 month to sprout.
My friends told me Ensete can't be grown here, so I gave it a shot. The seeds were soaked for 2 days with daily water change and then put into a zip-lock bag with moist commercial seed mix. Temperature was about 28C. The 1st one germinated by 18 days and two days later it was 3in with a new leaf enfolding! Others followed. Took them out individually and potted into 2in pots and kept in bag for 2 days to retain the humidity and then the bag was opened to let it get used to the ambient temp and humidity before putting in a haded position. Plantlets doing well. Very happy...
Submitted on 07/01/2008 by Tog Tan, Malaysia togtan@streamyx.com

...easy to germinate and need up to 1 month to sprout.
100 very fresh delivered Ensete superbum seeds were soaked in warm water with 100 ppm Gibberelenic acid for 24 h. (05.03.05)Set out in Coccohum with fungizid and rest of the soaking liquid. Seeds only coated with small amount of substrate. Placed warm 30°C and sunny.First germination occurs after 3 weeks. (24.03.05)
Submitted on 25/03/2005 by Michael Nippgen VetMed-M.Nippgen@t-online.de

...very easy to germinate and need up to 1 month to sprout.
Different treatments including -over night soaking in water + hot water scarification ,sulphuric acid scarification ,giberellic acid tratment for 15, 30 & 60 minutes were performed for the seeds of Ensete superbum. Fresh seeds germinated without any risk and also with over night soaking alone .But in case of stored seeds it was seen that no response (0%) in germination with over night soaking and hot water soaking . 100 % germination was observed in all other treatments and especially with gibberellic acid 60 minutes soaking , the plant hieght &girth was appreciable than other treatments . they took minimum 15 days to 1 month
Submitted on 22/07/2004 by kavitha ramesh oviya232 @yahoo.com

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plant cultivation comments by our visitors
Also see germination commnets above.

Plants from this species ...

... are of average ornamental value
In Jamnagar in India they need very little care and grow fast.
Dear SirI am observing this plant since 2002 in wild as well as in cultivated form. My experience says that under wild condition it takes 3 years to set fruit and in cultivated situation with adequate moisture this flower in two years.Seed Collection: Fresh seeds are suitable for propagation, it germinate with in 15 to 20 days under open bed condition provided by mulching with paddy straw.Transplanting: Can be done when plants attain a height of 20-40cm with 6-8 leaves after the end of rainy season.Spacing:1.5x1.5mFertilizer Dose:200:100:100( Depending on the soil condition). N at 3 splits(50 gram at planting remaining 75/150 at 3rd month and remaing at flowering).Irrigation: Monthly one irrigation.Removal of Dried Leaves: To keep in good looking condition it should be removed periodically according tio the drieness of leaves. Pest & Disease : Not yet reportedMedicinal Uses: It is reported that the seeds are effective in checking blood sugar level in diabetic patients.Seeds also posses anti urinary calci. Fresh juice of pseudostems are used by various tribes in india for curing high blood pressure.
Submitted on 25/01/2008 by SAROJ KUMAR V. skv_nrc@yahoo.com

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If you wish to read more on palm cultivation, we highly recommend Ornamental Palm Horticulture by Timothy K. Broschat and Alan W. Meerow, available in our bookshop.

Ratings and comments reflect individual experiences and the views of our visitors. They do not necessarily describe the most appropriate methods, nor are they necessarily valid for all seeds or plants of this species. Germination and plant cultivation success depends on many different factors; nevertheless, these experiences will hopefully aid you in your effort to get the best germination results from our seeds and the best growth results from your plants.

We recommend:
The Encyclopedia of Cultivated Palms

The Encyclopedia of Cultivated Palms
by Robert Lee Riffle, Paul Craft, Scott Zona

2nd edition
Completely revised and updated

Hardcover - 528 pages
11 x 8.5 inches

Our rating:
Suitable for: all

The Encyclopedia of Cultivated Palms is the definitive account of all palms that can be grown for ornamental and economic use. Palms are often underutilized as a result of their unfamiliarity—even to tropical gardeners. To help introduce these valuable plants to a new audience, the authors have exhaustively documented every genus in the palm family.
825 species are described in detail, including cold hardiness, water needs, height, and any special requirements. Generously illustrated with more than 900 photos, including photos of several palm species that have never before appeared in a general encyclopedia, The Encyclopedia of Cultivated Palms is as valuable as an identification guide as it is a practical handbook. Interesting snippets of history, ethnobotany, and biology inform the text and make this a lively catalog of these remarkable plants.

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