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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 10-15-2006, 04:03 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Bananas Brindando newbie wintering question

wow glad i ran into this site! i have 6 new varieties of bananas that i just purchased and planted in august and am concerned about winter! i was told that if they freeze the corm will regrow in spring but is that going to be fruiting wood? i guess i dont understand what stage of the plant the fruit grows on??? the plants are 3ft and im in zone 8 i believe ,itit rarely gets below 30f. or should i just take a chance on digging and storing? thanks folks any input is greatly appreciated! randy
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Old 10-15-2006, 04:24 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: newbie wintering question

Some can fruit after a year. some longer. just depends on the amount of sun and heat they get. As far as winter.... well if rarely gets below 30, then leave them in the ground/outside. make sure to mulch them good.If it gets to cold, then bring them indoors, or wrap/protect from frost.

that is my experience with bananas.
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Old 10-16-2006, 02:36 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: newbie wintering question

I would definitely protect them from a freeze. It is my understanding if the corm freezes even just once then the plant will not produce fruit. If you leave them in the ground I would protect the base of the trees with heavy mulch and chicken wire around them. If they are that small though there is no benifit to leaving them in the ground. Dig them up, clear the rootball and let them lay dormant in your garage over the winter. I am in zone 8 as well and found that last year I lost several plants due to moisture build up around the corm. I have a greenhouse this year so hopefully won't have that problem. I feel your better off to dig up and store than leave in the ground and risk freeze or even rot.
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Old 10-16-2006, 08:21 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: newbie wintering question

cool, thanks for the info ! moisture would more than likely be a problem in my flower bed. guess ill dig them up i was just concerned they were too small to suport themselves for a winter. thanks again randy
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Old 12-04-2006, 11:22 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Question Re: newbie wintering question

Hi. I'm a newbie too, but I am a little it further north than randy, in zone 6. I just got my bananas. They are teeny tiny litle pups. /the dwarf Cavendish one is only 6" tall. while the Liuki one is about 18" tall. Currently i have them growing in my bathroom under a growlite. Should i put them in the basement instead? Monkeypickle
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Old 12-04-2006, 12:38 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Default Re: newbie wintering question

The key is to choose the right species or cultivar, depending on what your goal is.

If your goal is foliage and large plants go for musa basjoo. Some of the more hardy himalayan species are interesting and colourful too, such as sikkimensis, balbisiana, cheesmani, and nagensium. There is less info about ultimate cold hardiness on these species though. None of these are considered edible.

If your goal is fruit, maybe you should try rajapuri, orinoco, chini-champa, or dwarf brazilian. From what I understand, getting fruit in a zone 8 climate is challenging but not impossible.

In my experience, it's best to leave the bananas in ground, -after stems have grown to atleast 2 feet. As they spread their root-system, they will grow faster the following season in ground than they ever would in a pot.
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Old 12-04-2006, 08:15 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Default Re: newbie wintering question

well i couldnt take it, i couldnt stand the thought of putting them in the dark and not being able to watch them grow so i potted them and put them in my father in laws green house for the winter. they have really started growing again...the fun never ends! i think im hooked! anyway its a polycarbonate panel greenhouse for around 700.00 . good investment for next year! randy
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Old 12-04-2006, 11:32 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Default Re: newbie wintering question

I am having some decent sucess so far this winter with my minis.

Ive got one Dwarf Cavendish, about 14 inches tall, a Double Mahoi, a Dwarf Ornico, and a few Little Prince and Truly Tinys.

They get misted like my citrus, usually twice per day, get a few hours sun and a bit of supplemental flourescent in evenings.

I almost lost my Mahoi as it was getting a lot of sun and it was a bit too dry. its since re-emerged with one leaf, and its a bit further from the window.

I did lose one of my tiny agri-starts right off, but im watering about once a week now and ill pot up the babies in the spring with some fresh compost and CHCs.

Good Luck!
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Old 12-06-2006, 01:56 AM   #9 (permalink)
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Bananas Brindando Re: newbie wintering question

very cool! hope things go well for you! ive got dwarf orinoco,dwarf red,blue java,manzano,rajapuri,dwarf cavendish. and i'm trying to let my basjoo winter??? so far just the leaves have frozen back, its been a cold fall so far as you would know, antioch is'nt far im in browns valley near grass valley. what sucks is an aquaintance has a citrus grove 3 miles up the hill in the """banana belt"""... damn. maybe ill get lucky with global warming?
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Old 12-06-2006, 08:00 AM   #10 (permalink)
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Default Re: newbie wintering question

hey Randy H, sounds like youve got a good variety. I dont like trying just 1 of a new plant because im never sure if its ME or the variety that is the problem if they fail.


Where are you located? ive been here about a year and a half but grass valley doesnt sound familiar, there is cotton in south tenneessee, about 1.5 hours south.

good luck!
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Old 12-06-2006, 06:35 PM   #11 (permalink)
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Default Re: newbie wintering question

oops my mistake, im in northern cal. we have an antioch also. im suprised how tuff these bananas are i thought id killed a few of them a couple of times but they pop right back!
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