Success and failure + a question.
I was given a hardy banana p-stem in August two years ago. It surely must be a basjoo. It now has 7 p-stems. Three of them are over 8 ft. The largest has a circumference of 22 inches.
I found and joined this group. When it survived the first winter I was hooked. In June 2011, I stopped by Northern Tropics and purchased a sikkimensis. The p-stem in now 4 feet and it has 2 pups. And it will stay in the ground again this winter.
That same month I was given two still dormant orinoco corms. (Dwarf I think) They had bloomed the summer before and had all the pups removed. They did well last summer each putting out pups. But my winter experience was a failure with these. I spent many hours last summer and fall in this group trying to learn the best ways to winter them.
Ok, it was also a learning experience. One I dug and brought inside. I made the mistake of popping off all the pups and washing all the dirt off of them. They looked good come spring. Because of the weird St. Louis weather I planted them in Pots. All of the P-stems died (rotted) from the bottom up. Four of them put out growth and are still alive. Crowded in small pots they stayed small. Iíll put them back in the ground in the spring and they should do well.
I lost the other. I wrapped the p-stems with a string of a hundred miniature Christmas lights. I used a Thermo Cube to control the temp. A wire cage filled with chopped leaves, wrapped it with a blue tarp and a plastic bag on top. On the coldest days I checked with a compost thermometer. The temp inside never dropped below 45 F.
In the spring when I unwrapped they looked just like they did last fall. But, they never put out any growth. The corm rotted.
In June I was given two more orinocoís. Not dwarf. One is 8 feet tall with a 4 ft put. The other is 5 feet tall and has a tiny pup.
It was 35 at my house on Monday. Lows are forecasted to be in the 40ís this week. 76 is forecasted for Sunday. My oaks have begun dropping leaves. I plan to dig the larger one and wrap the smaller of the two.
So, when should I dig??????????
When should I cover and wrap?????????
Thanks for any suggestions.