Distribution and diversity of banana (Musa spp.) in Wadi Tiwi, northern Oman

  • Authors : Behrendt, S.; Zum Felde, A.; De Langhe, E.A.L.; Khanjari, S.A.; Brinkmann, K.; Buerkert, A.

  • Document type : Journal article

  • Year of publication : 2015

  • Journal title : Genetic Resources and Crop Evolution

  • Volume (number) : 62 (8)

  • Pages : 1135-1145

  • Peer-reviewed : Yes

  • ISSN : 1573-5109

  • Language(s) : English

  • Abstract : Given the scarcity of information about banana (Musa spp.) diversity in Oman, and the recent discovery of an ancient but new-to-science Musa cultivar in the Omani mountain oasis of Umq Bi'r, the primary aims of this study were to (1) map and taxonomically identify Musa plants in the irrigated, terraced gardens in the millennia old agroecosystem of Wadi Tiwi, a coastal watershed in the north of the Sultanate and (2) to combine these data with a detailed household survey on banana cultivation and use. On the approximately 100 ha terraced, arable land encountered in Wadi Tiwi, a total of 2839 stands of banana plants with 8255 fruit bearing banana mats were geolocated. Cultivars identified were: Musa AAA 'Dwarf Cavendish' (52 %), ABB 'Bluggoe' (40 %), AAA 'Green Red' (4 %), AAA 'Red' (2 %), ABB 'Silver Bluggoe' (1 %), AAB 'Mysore' (1 %) and AAB 'Horn Plantain' (0.2 %). With increasing altitude and distance from the coast, the proportion and number of 'Dwarf Cavendish' increased, while those of 'Bluggoe' decreased, though both cultivars were planted throughout the area. Most bananas (82 %) were grown below 100 m asl on irrigated terraces near villages. Teratological changes were observed in the bunch morphology of two 'Mysore' plants. This first survey of the distribution and diversity of Musa in Wadi Tiwi and two mountain villages provides evidence for the lasting effects of ancient and recent trade on present day cultivation of bananas in this arid region. Possible in situ adaptations to this otherwise banana unfavourable environment merit further research.


  • Open access : No

  • Document on publisher's site : close View article on publisher's site

  • Musalit document ID : IN150439

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