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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 04-19-2020, 06:39 PM   #1 (permalink)
 
Location: Fairfax, VA
Zone: 7a
Name: dcleaves
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Default Musella Lasiocarpa Question

I'm located in Fairfax, VA, which is Zone 7a. I've had 2 types of bananas planted in the ground year round - Musa Basjoo and Musella Lasiocarpa. I've had them for 10+ years, and I winter them both the same way - after the first hard freeze of the fall I cut them down to ground level, and apply 5-6 inches of mulch. They come back year after year with plenty of new offshoots, but at some point I'd like to get the Musella Lasiocarpa to flower. How should I treat it to get that to happen? Thanks.

Dave
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Old 04-20-2020, 07:33 PM   #2 (permalink)
 
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Default Re: Musella Lasiocarpa Question

Chantilly, Va. 6bish. basjoo - hill wood chips, leaves etc around and pstem survives happily. for taller pstems, fill leaf bags and tie around. We have also used a heating cable for really tall p stems along with some smaller (thinner) "insulation" around pstem. We also make SURE that we cover it all with plastic to keep water off. Not sure if that is needed as long as corms and pstems are happy and do not freeze, but figured it could not hurt, so why not.
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Old 04-20-2020, 08:25 PM   #3 (permalink)
 
Location: Fairfax, VA
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Default Re: Musella Lasiocarpa Question

Thank you for the info. Just yesterday I transplanted about a half dozen pups from the clump to thin it out a bit, but I still have 7-8 growing. In the fall, should I keep all of the p-stems intact, or should I keep just the strongest looking one and cut the rest back?

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Old 04-21-2020, 09:54 AM   #4 (permalink)
 
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Default Re: Musella Lasiocarpa Question

we thin in the spring and leave everything to winter over. I would guess that one should never thin too late in fall as might not give time for wounds (cuts) to callous over.
This year we will have some mats we will not thin, just to see what happens and compare sizes of biggest pstems in both and see what does or does not flower.
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Old 04-30-2020, 08:14 AM   #5 (permalink)
 
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Default Re: Musella Lasiocarpa Question

I believe the Musella lasiocarpa should still be able to eventually flower where you are, since Virginia is still far enough south that it has plenty of heat.
However, giving it some protection over the winter would only help, and probably speed up the time until you see it flower.
It's usually a good idea to protect them the first year in the ground regardless, helping them get established.
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