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The Musaceae are a family of flowering plants in the order Zingiberales. The family is native to the tropics of the Old World. The plants are large herbs with very big leaves; the lower parts of the leaves form a false stem so they look as trees.
The species of this family are native to the tropics of Africa, East Asia, Australia and South Pacific; some of them, like bananas and plantains, are grown in all tropical countries for their fruits.
These are perennial herbaceous plants; they are not very tall. The lower parts of the big leaves are closely packed making a false stem (pseudostem) that is not made of wood. The true stems grow underground; it is called a rhizome or a corm. The false stems die after flowering and producing fruits and are replaced by new false stems rising from the underground corm.
There are three genera in this family:
- Department of Botany. "Families in the Zingiberales - Musaceae". Zingiberales Research. National Museum of Naural History - Smithsonian Institution. http://botany.si.edu/zingiberales/families/familypage.cfm?myfamily=Musaceae. Retrieved 22 May 2013.
- Wu, Delin; Kress, W. John. "Musaceae in Flora of China". http://www.efloras.org/florataxon.aspx?flora_id=2&taxon_id=10588. Retrieved 22 May 2013.
- Stevens, P.F.. "Zingiberales - Musaceae". Angiosperm Phylogeny Website. Version 12. http://www.mobot.org/MOBOT/Research/APweb/orders/zingiberalesweb.htm#Musaceae. Retrieved 22 May 2013.
- Jussieu, Antoine Laurent de (1789). Genera Plantarum, secundum ordines naturales disposita juxta methodum in Horto Regio Parisiensi exaratam. Paris. . https://books.google.com/books?id=nikkCxpBLm8C. Retrieved 22 May 2013.
- "Musella", World Checklist of Selected Plant Families, Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew, http://apps.kew.org/wcsp/namedetail.do?name_id=255045, retrieved 22 May 2013
- Watson, L.; Dallwitz, M.J.. "Angiosperm families - Musaceae". http://delta-intkey.com/angio/www/musaceae.htm. Retrieved 22 May 2013.