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Cold Hardy Bananas This forum is dedicated to the discussion of bananas that are able to grow and thrive in cold areas. You'll find lots of tips and discussions about keeping your bananas over the winter.

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Old 05-15-2007, 10:03 AM   #1 (permalink)
Greenwood, S.C.-Zone 8a
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Default List of cold hardy bananas

I apologize in advance if this topic has been covered in a single post, but can anyone on here give me a decent list of bananas that are hardy (psuedostem or mulchwise) for an 8a environment in the upstate of South Carolina? We have very hot and humid summers and shorter mild winters for the most past. I only have two varities that I currently grow outside: Musa basjoo and Musa lasiocarpa. Thank you in advance, and I am sorry if I am beating a dead horse.
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Old 05-15-2007, 12:12 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: List of cold hardy bananas

Here are my candidates, but there is a fair amount of guessing here, since I have only read about many of these plants' cold hardiness:

Very cold hardy:
- Basjoo
- Sikkimensis + Red tiger
- Helen
- Certain strains of Balbisiana
- Dwarf & Tall orinoco (if wrapped & protected from rain)
- Formosana(?)
- Yangtse(?)

Fairly Hardy:
- Velutina
- Cheesmani
- Rajapuri
- Brazilian (Dwarf & Tall)
- "California Gold"
- Saba
- Chini Champa

Stems may survive a brief frost
- Apple
- Goldfinger
- Misi Luki (?)

- The Iholenes
- Cavendish type bananas

Anyone want to help me with more candidates in the right place here?

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Old 05-15-2007, 12:13 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: List of cold hardy bananas

I have posted it here earlier. Although the results are for Zone 9 California, it should give you a clue as to what cultivars you should start with.
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Old 05-15-2007, 02:05 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: List of cold hardy bananas

In addition to the ones Erlend mentioned, I would add the following:

Musa yunnanensis (started sprouting in Mid-march here in zone 7a!)
Musa 'Royal Purple' - came up around the first of May
Musa mannii

Thought to be cold-hardy, but not thoroughly tested yet:

Musa thomsonii
Musa itinerans varieties
Any Musa sikkimensis hybrid
Musa nagensium
M. violacea

There are other, lesser-known species not yet available in cultivation that will hopefully prove cold-hardy also.
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