The aim of this study was to characterize Heliconia genotypes phenotypically using 26 qualitative descriptors. The evaluations were conducted in five flowering stems per clump in three replicates of 22 Heliconia genotypes. Data were subjected to multivariate analysis, the Mahalanobis dissimilarity measure was estimated, and the dendrogram was generated using the nearest neighbor method. From the values generated by the dissimilarity matrix and the clusters formed among the Heliconia genotypes studied, the phenotypic characterizations that best differentiated the genotypes were: pseudostem and wax green tone (light or dark green), leaf-wax petiole, the petiole hair, cleft margin at the base of the petiole, midrib underside shade of green, wax midrib underside, color sheet (light or dark green), unequal lamina base, torn limb, inflorescence-wax, position of inflorescence, bract leaf in apex, twisting of the rachis, and type of bloom. These results will be applied in the preparation of a catalog for Heliconia descriptors, in the selection of different genotypes with most promising characteristics for crosses, and for the characterization of new genotypes to be introduced in germplasm collections.