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Member Introductions This is the `tell us about yourself` category. Please make an introductory post here, let us know a little about yourself. A perfect place to break the ice.


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Old 06-19-2009, 02:16 PM   #1 (permalink)
 
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Location: Northern Arizona
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Default coming here to learn and share

I am brand new to the world of bananas, except for eating them of course.

I live in Northern Arizona, on the border with UT. We are in the high desert at 4800 feet. The maps say we are zone 7 or 7-8. One of our greatest challenges with most fruits is not the level of winter cold but the late frosts we get after early warming spells.

I have always enjoyed gardening and have gotten to a place in life where I can settle down a bit and dig in.

I love bananas but never considered growing them as I didn't think there was a chance that I could in this area.

The idea that I could have some dwarfs and winter them indoors got me searching and led me here. From the little that I have read so far, it seems that there may be some cultivars that might survive here, in the ground? (with or without protection?)

So, I am hear to learn...to glean what I can from others' wisdom and experience...and as I gain some to share with others.

Thanks for the nice forum that so many seem to contribute to.

aaron
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Old 06-19-2009, 05:42 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: coming here to learn and share

Hi Aaron, let me be the first to officially welcome you to our community. There's a whole bunch of Musa lovers in here and we will be more than happy to assisst you in any way you might need.

Quote:
Originally Posted by browndrake View Post
I live in Northern Arizona, on the border with UT. We are in the high desert at 4800 feet. The maps say we are zone 7 or 7-8. One of our greatest challenges with most fruits is not the level of winter cold but the late frosts we get after early warming spells.
I absolutely understand what you are saying. Just as we some springs get to 70s (in Fahrenheit) or 20s (in Celsius), Russian cold continental front suddenly appears carrying our so beloved spring frosts. Especially peaches like them. They literally drop all the flowers for the season.

Quote:
Originally Posted by browndrake View Post
The idea that I could have some dwarfs and winter them indoors got me searching and led me here. From the little that I have read so far, it seems that there may be some cultivars that might survive here, in the ground? (with or without protection?)
If you are referring to edible banana plants, than such pieces as Musa 'Texas Star', Musa 'California Gold' and others are said to be very resistant to cold and occasional frosts. The problem really is, that the plant usually dies out and only its parts in the soil survive, when the harder frosts come. If properly protected that is.
Other than that, there's a variety of seeded species quite hardy, whose pseudstems can withstand even harsh winters when taken care for properly. Such as Musa basjoo, Musa sikkimensis and other.

Quote:
Originally Posted by browndrake View Post
So, I am hear to learn...to glean what I can from others' wisdom and experience...and as I gain some to share with others.
Godspeed on your exploration journey!
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Old 06-19-2009, 07:39 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: coming here to learn and share

Welcome to the group, Aaron. You'll learn a lot here. We're all grieving at the moment over the loss of another member. Normally we're a pretty happy-go-lucky bunch, so feel free to ask questions. Good luck with growing in Arizona!
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Old 06-19-2009, 08:33 PM   #4 (permalink)
 
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Thanks you two, for the welcome. I am sorry to hear of the loss. It sounds like this is a pretty close bunch.

I am looking forward to getting to know you all.

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Old 06-21-2009, 04:17 PM   #5 (permalink)
 
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Welcome Aaron!

I too came here to learn & share with others that love bananas. I'm so glad I found this site ... there is SO much information here & such nice people.

Annie
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Old 06-21-2009, 04:23 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Default Re: coming here to learn and share

All of us Banana newbies...Welcome browndrake!!

I am loving it here on the Forum, the people here are helpful & AWESOME!!

I can spend hours reviewing the posts & threads...culling what I can from them.

Hope to 'see' you here alot! ~Cheryl
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Old 06-21-2009, 04:31 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Welcome to the org! You've got a goldmine of information here with wonderful people. I'm in my second summer of nana growing and boy is it addicting.

I've driven through N. Az and S. Utah a couple times. Beautiful! Good luck with all that you grow.

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Old 06-21-2009, 05:05 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Welcome aboard.... a few late frosts. There's always a way around that if you're ambitious. I look forward to hearing more about your plants and growing situation.
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Old 06-21-2009, 07:12 PM   #9 (permalink)
 
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Default Re: coming here to learn and share

sounds like you are a quite a bunch!

Am looking forward to this.
...................
l have recently arrived at a place in life where I can settle down a bit. (hopefully no more moves)

As I said, I really enjoy gardening. I love all fruits and fruit trees. Unfortunately, this area is prone to late frosts. We loose our peaches and apricots most years...as the early warm brings out the blossoms which then are killed by the late frosts.

This started my quest to find late bloomers for this area. (I will be a grafting fool for the next few years...Playing with the the known late bloomers, various scions and rootstocks....)

One site led me to the never previously considered bananas....Which I learned I could grown in a container and bring inside for the cold season. That led me here.

I can't remember any such undertaking (bananas) that I have jumped into with no previous knowledge or exposure. BUT, it just seems to fit in so well with the direction my hobbies are taking in life.

Heck, as there has been no other, perhaps I can call bananas and fruit trees my 'mid life crisis.'

Thanks for the welcomes. I am looking forward to going bananas.

I have several hours or reading to do before I can even ask the right questions...like is it too late in the season to start...(would be nice to not have to wait, like I will with my other trees) What varieties would be best to start with...in my area?,
Are there any dwarf variety that can live indoors, always, and bear fruit? When I showed my wife some nana pics, she told me that she wants a couple dwarfs for inside the house.
...
...
...
and other such questions.... Surely most of the questions have already found answers in the forum.

thanks again.

aaron
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Old 06-21-2009, 07:48 PM   #10 (permalink)
 
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Welcome to the Organization Browndrake!

It may be difficult but a ground recessed rock walled greenhouse might be feasable there ( kind of an earth sheltered type ).

Best wishes!
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Old 06-21-2009, 08:05 PM   #11 (permalink)
 
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Aaron,

Not unusual here to get really warm with lots growing & then a surprisingly late frost or two, tho usually fairly light frosts. I take my overwintered bananas outside in their pots so I can bring them in for the night if there's going to be a frost and take back out the next afternoon. I have one banana that is too large to move around so, once it SEEMS safe, I plant it in the ground and, if a frost gets predicted, use a tall stepladder to straddle the stem & make a framework, cover it with heavy sheets secured by clothespins to make a tent around it, and put a small bathroom heater (the fan blower type, not ceramic) inside the "tent" for the night and it has survived every time. It's some extra work, but it gets my nanas back outside and growing sooner.

Best of luck!
Annie
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Old 07-12-2009, 02:46 AM   #12 (permalink)
 
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Just thought that I would post a couple pics of our world and the new home of 8 bananas....Northern Arizona/Southern Utah..zone 7.

(note: we just moved in a few weeks back and things are kind of torn apart. Also, good camera is still packed somewhere. so pics are not great.)

views from the front porch:







looking towards the front porch:




aaron
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Old 07-12-2009, 10:08 AM   #13 (permalink)
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That view just takes my breath away!! You all must be having a blast getting settled!

Deb
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Old 07-12-2009, 03:51 PM   #14 (permalink)
 
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Yes, we are having a lot of fun.

It will be nice, however, when I complete the remodeling so that I can spend more time in my garden, working with my fruit trees, and playing with my new addiction of bananas.

Thanks for the comments.

btw...I am sure that I am totally unbiased....this is some of the most beautiful country in the world.

I love the red rocks, the high desert, and the tall ponderosas and quakies in the nearby mountains. It makes one's blood flow to awaken to the whistling elk or to see deer sparing nearby. Perhaps it are these and other such experiences that instilled in me a love of nature and set me up to fall prey to the addiction of bananas, fruit trees, and growing all such things.

thanks again.

aaron
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