The Botany of the Voyage of H.M.S. Sulphur 6:170. 1846.
Plants 2–4 m, pseudostem well-developed. Leaves 3–5 per shoot, green, longest blade 75–150 × 18–33 cm. Inflorescences erect, to 45 cm; cincinnal bracts spirally arranged, 8–13 per inflorescence, middle bract with outer surface orange and/or red and glabrous, 14–19.5 cm, 5–7 cm wide at base. Flowers 10–15 per cincinnus; perianth green, yellow, or orange with dark green sepal margins, sometimes sparsely puberulent along fused sepal margins, 3.5–4.6 cm, 7–8 mm wide at gibbous base, nearly straight; sepal margins, fused, dark green, glabrous, sometimes sparsely puberulous. Drupes blue, 10–13 × 8–9 mm. 2n = 24.
Phenology: Flowering early fall (Sep).
Habitat: Disturbed areas
Elevation: 0–4 m
Introduced; Fla., West Indies, native, Mexico, Central America, and South America.
In the flora Heliconia latispatha often persists in old gardens but only rarely spreads outside them.