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The Order Zingiberales
The Zingiberales consist of eight plant families, most of which are of horticultural interest. These families and their horticultural significance will be highlighted below.

The eight plant families in the Zingiberales are the Musaceae (the bananas), Strelitziaceae (the birds-of-paradise), Lowiaceae, Heliconiaceae (the heliconias), Zingiberaceae (the gingers), Costaceae (costus), Cannaceae (the cannas), and Marantaceae (the prayer plants). 

There are some conspicuous characteristics by which many of the plants in this order can be recognized, some of these are shown below:



Ornamental banana (Musa ornata)

The Musaceae (the bananas)

 Bananas are among the World’s most popular tropical fruit. In some Caribbean territories bananas are a major cash crop (e.g. St. Lucia, St. Vincent, Jamaica and Dominica). Most of the bananas produced in Barbados however are for local consumption.

At Andromeda we maintain specimens of ornamental and crop type bananas.

Banana links:


Edible bananas (Biodiversity Explorer)

Edible banana


More of the Zingiberales



Copyright © 2003 Stephen Proverbs ( c/o University of the West Indies, Cave Hill Campus). All rights reserved.
Revised: December 11, 2003 .