Musella lasiocarpa (Golden Lotus Banana) is an ornamental, herbaceous perennial plant. It forms dense clumps of short thick stems known as pseudotrunks, each of which terminates in five or six short paddle-shaped leaves. The showy inflorescence is known as a terminal panicle (0.2-0.3 m long) is borne at the tip of the pseudostem. The inflorescence is composed of yellow tubular flowers and yellow, waxy bracts. The bracts are triangular with edges curled inwards and arranged in an overlapping star-shaped pattern that resembles a lotus flower. The bracts slowly unfold 1 at a time, revealing a row of small tubular flowers at the base of the bract. It is closely related to bananas, but it does not produce any edible banana fruit.
Species: M. lasiocarpa
Scientific Name: Musella lasiocarpa
Synonyms: Ensete lasiocarpum, Musa lasiocarpa, Musella splendida.
Common Name: Chinese dwarf banana, golden lotus banana or Chinese yellow banana.
How to grow and maintain Musella lasiocarpa (Golden Lotus Banana):
It thrives best in bright light to full sun year-round. Give it at least 6 hours of direct sunlight per day in spring and summer. You can move your plant outdoors for the summer, just be sure to bring it inside when the temperature drops to 50°F/10°C at night.
It grows best in organically rich, medium moisture, well-drained, any good potting mix.
Water thoroughly, Keep the soil evenly moist in spring and summer, slightly drier in winter. If the leaves fold down from the center rib and turn brown, the plant is thirsty.
It prefers average room temperatures 65°F – 75°F / 18°C – 24°C year-round. It will tolerate temps down to 50°F / 10°C.
It prefers moderate humidity, around 40% relative humidity.
Fertilize regularly. Feed every two weeks spring through fall with a balanced liquid fertilizer diluted by half. Your plant will not grow and bloom without a steady supply of nutrients.
It can be easily propagated by dividing offsets. It produces offsets (called pups) throughout the year. Pups can be divided in late spring or summer. To segregate, dig down to carefully separate its roots and pot it up separately. It takes about 2-3 years after planting an offset for it to blossom.
Pests and Diseases:
It has no serious pest or disease problems.