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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 09-26-2017, 07:59 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Mekong Giant vs Basjoo

Mekong Giant vs Basjoo.
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Old 09-26-2017, 08:03 PM   #2 (permalink)
 
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Default Re: Mekong Giant vs Basjoo

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Originally Posted by cincinnana View Post
Mekong Giant vs Basjoo.
Any pictures?

I love my Basjoo
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Old 09-27-2017, 12:30 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: Mekong Giant vs Basjoo

For me the Mekong is growing twice as fast as my green basjoo. I haven't had the Mekong long (summer 2017) but it seems to love it here.
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Old 10-01-2017, 08:02 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: Mekong Giant vs Basjoo

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Originally Posted by Tytaylor77 View Post
For me the Mekong is growing twice as fast as my green basjoo. I haven't had the Mekong long (summer 2017) but it seems to love it here.
Thanks Ty for the encouraging update.

I am on the first year of the Mekong which is said to be a cold hardy plant similar to a Basjoo in a heavily mulched situation in colder zones.

I picked up two plants a few months ago to see .....the Giant..... and to see what it does in zone5/6.


My plants (mekongs)will in containers for the first season(now) because the plants did not "fill the containers with roots" as I had liked in the two months that I had them.

The plants will be under cfl's for the winter in a grow area along with other plants.......nothing pro grade.

I am thinking I will have aggressive growth ( lots of runners) just like the Basjoos next year.

Here is a photo of 120 -+ day old Basjoos grown in part sun from pups separated from plant stock in the yard.
I said PART SUN....that means more shade than sun.

Mekong giants are in the forefront in containers....ready for the challenge.....if there is one.

The comparison should be fun to watch...

.
Mekong pups and Basjoo
.

by
Hostafarian
,
on Flickr

These are the same Musa Basjoo plants 150 days ago..April 15.

Ferns are Matteuccia struthiopteris, The King.

This fern is an awesome aggressive plant, I had to trim the 4-5 foot fronds back to allow more light to the banana plants at one point. The plant is an awesome filler plant
.
Basjoos springtime by Hostafarian, on Flickr


Small pups April 15th

by
Hostafarian
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on Flickr
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Old 10-02-2017, 06:23 PM   #5 (permalink)
 
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Default Re: Mekong Giant vs Basjoo

How to tell the difference with mature plants. I bought 2 or each about 12 years ago and I've always assumed the basjoo was what I was left with but don't really know. I'm just a few miles south of Raleigh NC and my bananas reach 10-12 feet tall each year, regardless if I mulch during the winter or not. I do cut them back to about 6-8 inches after the first frost.
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Old 10-03-2017, 07:52 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Default Re: Mekong Giant vs Basjoo

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How to tell the difference with mature plants. I bought 2 or each about 12 years ago and I've always assumed the basjoo was what I was left with but don't really know. I'm just a few miles south of Raleigh NC and my bananas reach 10-12 feet tall each year, regardless if I mulch during the winter or not. I do cut them back to about 6-8 inches after the first frost.
Is that 10-12 feet total with leaf ...or 10-12 pstem with a 15 foot leaf for a total of 25 feet in height.

There are a few good previous threads....mekong/basjoo/itinerans/.

These threads have confused and amazed me with info.

But no one has documented a side by side and had taken photos.

I have seen mature mats of both plants......I am baffled.

Upham Giant Basjoos have me baffled even more.....and they are local.
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Old 10-04-2017, 02:44 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Default Re: Mekong Giant vs Basjoo

I went ahead and planted mine in ground mid summer or so. It’s growing far above average. The fact that it can send pups out 30' really scares me a lot! I have read they can get out of control down here. I’m hoping how I manage pups it will be ok.

Also basjoo is one of my worst growers! When the temps get up in the high 90s/100s it just stops growing. Really suprized me! I was expecting them to go crazy down here. I’ll keep you updated how mine does next year. Has anyone verified the max height? I’ve read all kinds of different numbers!
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Old 10-04-2017, 11:17 AM   #8 (permalink)
 
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Default Re: Mekong Giant vs Basjoo

With leaf. I would love a 25 foot banana as I've planted these as landscaping features.
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Old 10-05-2017, 01:37 AM   #9 (permalink)
 
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Default Re: Mekong Giant vs Basjoo

Cincinnana, is that fern winter hardy? By that, I mean does it come back every year after being left in the ground in your zone? And does it require more shade than sun as you described above?
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Old 10-08-2017, 07:42 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Default Re: Mekong Giant vs Basjoo

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Cincinnana, is that fern winter hardy? By that, I mean does it come back every year after being left in the ground in your zone? And does it require more shade than sun as you described above?
The fern is hardy.
In zone 4 Michigan I have seen perfect vase shaped 6 foot plants in the wild.

The plant could work in your area.


Ostrich fern

The fern does well in full sun, part sun and shade to deep shade ....just needs great soil and lots of moisture. I have seen this awesome plant grown in those conditions in the yard and in the wild.
You can bend the rules(for light) for this plant.
The fern is a good performer ......just like those Basjoos.

Part sun

Cincinnana's ferns
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Old 10-10-2017, 07:57 PM   #11 (permalink)
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Default Re: Mekong Giant vs Basjoo

Quote:
Originally Posted by tcarpenter View Post
How to tell the difference with mature plants. I bought 2 or each about 12 years ago and I've always assumed the basjoo was what I was left with but don't really know. I'm just a few miles south of Raleigh NC and my bananas reach 10-12 feet tall each year, regardless if I mulch during the winter or not. I do cut them back to about 6-8 inches after the first frost.
I was told the edges of the petioles are turned inward and wavy.
But I have not done a comparison of plants yet.
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Old 10-10-2017, 08:46 PM   #12 (permalink)
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Default Re: Mekong Giant vs Basjoo

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Originally Posted by Tytaylor77 View Post
I went ahead and planted mine in ground mid summer or so. Itís growing far above average. The fact that it can send pups out 30' really scares me a lot! I have read they can get out of control down here. Iím hoping how I manage pups it will be ok.
I am curious also.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tytaylor77 View Post

Also basjoo is one of my worst growers! When the temps get up in the high 90s/100s it just stops growing. Really suprized me! I was expecting them to go crazy down here. Iíll keep you updated how mine does next year. Has anyone verified the max height? Iíve read all kinds of different numbers!
With the cool weather and heavy rains I think my plants are in the "Sweet Spot" of the grow cycle.
Mine slowed down in the heat also.

Average height for Basjoo in a few maintained gardens in my area is 18 +- feet.
Pstems are 8-10+ feet
My guess of a visual sampling of 300+ plants


On the other hand there are plenty in the 12-15 foot range too.

Siting of the plant makes a big difference as well as soil with these plants.
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Old 10-11-2017, 04:01 AM   #13 (permalink)
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Default Re: Mekong Giant vs Basjoo

Quote:
Originally Posted by cincinnana View Post

Average height for Basjoo in a few maintained gardens in my area is 18 +- feet.
Pstems are 8-10+ feet
My guess of a visual sampling of 300+ plants


On the other hand there are plenty in the 12-15 foot range too.
Any clue the height of Mekong Giant? Mine is growing great. New leaves are very pretty! I will report how it does when the temp drops. So far itís not leaving the 90s for more than a day or 2.
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Old 10-11-2017, 09:45 PM   #14 (permalink)
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Default Re: Mekong Giant vs Basjoo

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Originally Posted by tcarpenter View Post
With leaf. I would love a 25 foot banana as I've planted these as landscaping features.
Here is a pic of a local mat.
The plants are in a well maintained garden .
Big or small these plants are awesome...

Just click on the photo to see the whole album of this beautiful plant


Untitled
by
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,
on Flickr
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Old 10-12-2017, 05:18 AM   #15 (permalink)
 
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Default Re: Mekong Giant vs Basjoo

wow thick and dense mat!
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Old 11-07-2017, 06:00 PM   #16 (permalink)
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Default Re: Mekong Giant vs Basjoo

Basjoo flower...this photo is a few weeks old (4)....

But is has endured a few frosts and onslaught of cool weather....

I would love to be able to grow these plants year round.....but I cannot.
However I can tell you how they overwinter

While the local "endemic plants suffer falls wrath this plant seems to thrive".
I cut lots of ferns and hostas from the landscape......but the basjoo looks "new"



I will post photos of this plant ( for fun) until it topples...


Last year was near .. Christmas

.
Basjoo flower

by
Hostafarian
,
on Flickr.

Same plant last year..

Basjoo Natural die off for winter. Heavy mulch.

by
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