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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 04-11-2011, 09:11 AM   #1 (permalink)
 
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Default Orinoco Did Not Make It

Uncovered my bananas this weekend. My two m. orinoco are dead. Thought they would be okay in Zone 7(b). Too bad. Any ideas on what I did wrong?

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Old 04-11-2011, 09:19 AM   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: Orinoco Did Not Make It

They will be OK if corms are still good.
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Old 04-11-2011, 05:17 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: Orinoco Did Not Make It

How do you know it didn't make it? That pseudostem actually looks pretty good in the photo. Did you cut down slices until you found a live green (or yellow/white) leaf in the center? Even if the pseudostem is really dead (mushy and rotten) then it could still re-sprout from the corm. If it was truly rotten then it probably wouldn't still be standing.
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Old 04-11-2011, 05:23 PM   #4 (permalink)
 
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Default Re: Orinoco Did Not Make It

The only thing "wrong" I can see is that you're in an area that got too darn cold!

I agree with Dalmatiansoap; if the corm is OK, watch & wait for the pups to start peeking up & remove any mushy parts from the parents.

The only other thing you could've done would have been either to go with the "microclimate" thing or add some active heating, but from the looks of things, you probably would've needed both.
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Old 04-12-2011, 06:35 AM   #5 (permalink)
 
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Default Re: Orinoco Did Not Make It

We're right here on the 7B/8A border and one Orinoco beside the house looked a lot like yours, but It appears to be pushing up new leaves- though I've had to cut it down to just a foot or two. Either way, you're should come back from the bottom...
Also this winter was exceptionally bad.
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Old 04-12-2011, 12:38 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Default Re: Orinoco Did Not Make It

I live in a 7 zone more north, (Maryland) Once the first frost sets in and the trees turn brown , I cut them all the way down to the ground and cover them with mulch, about 6" or so. The following year they will start growing out of the ground and will get about 6-7 feet high. They will never produce fruit, since they need to mature for about 2 years but they grow to the same height or taller the following year.
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Old 04-13-2011, 01:33 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Default Re: Orinoco Did Not Make It

Your setup looked great. It looks like you had some settling of the leaves which uncovered the top of your P-stem. I had the same thing happen to me but I live in a more forgiving climate. Still next year I plan to add leaves to my cage as needed to keep it topped off. You may want to use Christmas lights too.
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Old 04-13-2011, 08:31 AM   #8 (permalink)
 
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Default Re: Orinoco Did Not Make It

"Did you cut down slices until you found a live green (or yellow/white) leaf in the center? "

RobG - Yes I did just that, but it was getting late and I didn't have time for a photo of the base. I took off 4-6" at a time and nothing but brown ll the wayto the ground. We'll see what happens over the next week.

These are my Basjoos that came through just fine of course! My understanding was that Orinoco was "almost" as hardy as Basjoo, so I was hoping to see fruit this year. I thought the trick is to keep as much of the P-Stem alive above ground to get an extra head start in the Spring. I'll try digging them up next time around.





Orinocos taken mid-September 2010-
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Old 04-15-2011, 02:34 PM   #9 (permalink)
 
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Default Re: Orinoco Did Not Make It

Finally got a few minutes this morning to get outside and take a photo of the crown. Not looking too pretty. I'll give it a few more days then maybe dig it up.

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Old 04-16-2011, 12:12 AM   #10 (permalink)
 
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Default Re: Orinoco Did Not Make It

Looks like it's dead but maybe when you dig it up it will surprise you with some hidden live pups underground.
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Old 04-16-2011, 06:58 AM   #11 (permalink)
 
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Default Re: Orinoco Did Not Make It

I had a few basjoo that looked like this or worse. I dug them up, put them in the mulch and called it day. A few weeks later was walking by and noticed a nodule on one of the corms. I kept an eye on it and wouldnt you know it, it was growing. so maybe give it some time, mine were way to wet over the winter and killed all of them except this one described. Im in zone 6 so freezing and wet over winter does not mix. Good luck
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Old 04-16-2011, 03:20 PM   #12 (permalink)
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Default Re: Orinoco Did Not Make It

My guess is that your setup absorbed the moisture floating down that
slightly sloping part of your garden. Probably the ground was very wet
close to the banana?


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Old 04-16-2011, 06:44 PM   #13 (permalink)
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Default Re: Orinoco Did Not Make It

I'd say just leave it as is. It might not re-sprout from the pseudostem, but might re-sprout from the corm...which is almost as good since really the only way to get fruit is to store them indoors over the winter. A lot of the Musa that are "almost as cold hardy as basjoo" still lose their pseudostems over the winter and re-sprout. I think Orinocco and Raja-Puri are similar in cold hardiness (to each other), but less so than itinerans, yunnanensis, sikkimensis, velutina, balbisiana, Musella lasiocarpa and maybe a few others. It might be the most cold hardy of the seedless varieties, but a far cry from basjoo.

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Old 04-26-2011, 11:15 AM   #14 (permalink)
 
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Default Re: Orinoco Did Not Make It

Well folks, I finally dug up the corm. Cut it in half...nothing but brown all the way through. Oh, well. Bums me out because I really love that blue-green color and these were the only two Orinoco's I had. My plant budget is running low these days - Hah, ha! I At least I have plenty of Basjoo pups to stick in these 2 holes. Thanks for all your great comments - S.
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Old 04-26-2011, 12:35 PM   #15 (permalink)
 
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Default Re: Orinoco Did Not Make It

I dig mine up and store them. I had one to bloom and fruit in storage this winter. all my Ice creams rotted but one. so I am hoping for that one to come back. may have some Dw Orinocos soon to share though if all goes well.
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Old 04-26-2011, 01:30 PM   #16 (permalink)
 
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Default Re: Orinoco Did Not Make It

Bummer~
Looking at the location, next to the short retaining wall, it looks like there could've been cold penetration from the side as well as from the surface on down.
You might want to consider a slab of Styrofoam behind the wall, or maybe moving the new inhabitant further back from the edge.
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