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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 10-25-2011, 01:14 AM   #1 (permalink)
 
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Default Storing bananas for winter!!! UGH!!!

That time of year again and this past week, the more tender bananas were dug an prepped for storing under the house. This included mysore, golden aromatic, saba, rose, ice cream, zebrinus, and praying hands. Just thought I would share what I get to work with this year and hopefully have a great jump on 2012 season!!!
Here are my two clumps of praying hands. The first is in the back of this bed.





Here are the two largest pstems: (son-in-law is 6'1" for scale)





Here are the smaller praying hands that will go into storage:



This is why praying hands are one of my favorites! Leaves are remarkable in size!!! This one is over 9' in total length:



Here are all my pstems (20+) ready for winter storage:



Definitely a lot of work, but sure is nice in the summer!!!
Here's to a MILD and SHORT winter!!!
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Old 10-25-2011, 05:08 AM   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: Storing bananas for winter!!! UGH!!!

Indeed a lot of hard work.
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Old 10-25-2011, 09:27 AM   #3 (permalink)
 
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Default Re: Storing bananas for winter!!! UGH!!!

thanks alot randy4ut..LOL
i dont have a praying hands.. sigh.. another i need.. LOL
i am totally convinced..this is an addiction.. LOL
great pics man!!!!
i too am in process of digging everything up now.. i have 2 helpers
ive potted up almost all my EE's and have over 60 pots..
the nanners (except basjoo) are comming out now too..
biggest ensetes and sabas are this week.. sigh...LOL
i have 2 on my shopping list now.. kandarain..and now praying hands
good stuff for sure !!!!
good luck to ya !!!
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Old 10-25-2011, 02:05 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: Storing bananas for winter!!! UGH!!!

Yes I can see all the pictures.
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Old 10-25-2011, 02:17 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Default Re: Storing bananas for winter!!! UGH!!!

That's a lot of nice pics! It's too bad you have to prepare for winter already though. My two Not Ice Creams are still going strong! Good luck to all of us next season!

And now I want to get my hands on Praying Hands! :P
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Old 10-25-2011, 04:11 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Default Re: Storing bananas for winter!!! UGH!!!

Love the pics!!

Ok you are not covering them at all. Last year I covered them up too much and they mildewed. Do you spritz them at all with any water during the winter or just let them alone?
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Old 10-25-2011, 04:47 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Default Re: Storing bananas for winter!!! UGH!!!

Another question! I see that you left small pups on one. Is that so you don't weaken it by cutting into the corm? Ric and I just sat and went through your pictures and he went out and chopped off the leaves (except the top) of about 4 and we'll try it in the basement of the old farm house but without covering them this time.
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Old 10-25-2011, 07:44 PM   #8 (permalink)
 
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Default Re: Storing bananas for winter!!! UGH!!!

Deb, I have had good luck storing them under the house. I do not cover them at all and add no water to them. I do store them on plastic pallets, just to keep them off the ground and air moving around them. No light, no heat, nothing... Now some do better than others. Example, zebrinus does not store well for me at all, but this year I have a bigger clump with largest pstem pushing 6-7'. Now thats just the pstem and without any leaves... I did pot up a few other zebrinus just to make sure I have a couple for next year. As far as the pups being left on, I don't like to mess with the corm at all unless I have to due to size, like the praying hands... Now this is just my opinion and what I do so take it with a grain of salt as I am not nearly the expert that so many others on here are... Just what works for me...
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Old 10-25-2011, 10:26 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Default Re: Storing bananas for winter!!! UGH!!!

Thanks! We have wooden pallets to lay them on. (News paper office gives them out for free here)

I gotcha on the corms... the laterita pups I cut off the corm and potted became droopy and the bigger clump Ric was able to dig up are in a big pot looking like they were never disturbed!

Good luck on all yours!
Deb
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Old 10-27-2011, 06:06 PM   #10 (permalink)
 
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Default Re: Storing bananas for winter!!! UGH!!!

Randy - I just Brought my Orinocos in yesterday, it is snowing out right now!
What are you going to do with your Palms? Do you store the plumerias with the bananas?
Paul
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Old 10-27-2011, 07:31 PM   #11 (permalink)
 
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Default Re: Storing bananas for winter!!! UGH!!!

Quote:
Originally Posted by CTPalm View Post
Randy - I just Brought my Orinocos in yesterday, it is snowing out right now!
What are you going to do with your Palms? Do you store the plumerias with the bananas?
Paul
Paul, here is what I have done with the butias. They have since outgrown the 55gal. plastic barrels, so I will be doing something different this year...



150 watt heat bulb inside attached to a thermocube (on at 20F and off at 30F)



Covered with frost cloth:



All my other palms stay out unprotected and do fine here so far!!!

As far as my plumeria, they go in a friend's greenhouse where temps do not go below about 40F.
Wish you the best with your orinoco overwintering!!!
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Old 10-29-2011, 07:09 AM   #12 (permalink)
 
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Default Re: Storing bananas for winter!!! UGH!!!

In your photos everything still looks green and healthy. How do you decide when to dig up your bananas to store them? Do you wait until a freeze warning, start when the temperature is staying below 60? Can you store them too soon? I am thinking of trying this on a couple of my ice cream and dwarf cavendish bananas.
Thanks for the great pictures.
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Old 10-29-2011, 08:49 AM   #13 (permalink)
 
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Default Re: Storing bananas for winter!!! UGH!!!

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In your photos everything still looks green and healthy. How do you decide when to dig up your bananas to store them? Do you wait until a freeze warning, start when the temperature is staying below 60? Can you store them too soon? I am thinking of trying this on a couple of my ice cream and dwarf cavendish bananas.
Thanks for the great pictures.
I usually would wait a bit longer but with my back becoming more valuable to me, I decided to dig these when I had my son-in-law in town to help!!! We have experienced temps drop down to the mid and upper 30's, but yet to have a killing frost. The pstems that I have dug are still in my unheated garage waiting for me to take them to a friend's house to store under his house. His crawlspace is taller than mine and a straight shot from outside, so a lot easier to get them in there than my crawlspace.

As far as digging too early, I am sure you could but with temps down to where they are, my bananas are not in active growth so I did not feel it would harm them. I suppose only time will tell...

Like I said above, the decided factor on when I dug them up was due to shear weight of the pstem/corm, and my aging back!!! LOL
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Old 11-02-2011, 04:01 PM   #14 (permalink)
 
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Default Re: Storing bananas for winter!!! UGH!!!

Turning cold in a hurry here near DC ... I was away at a Scottish Festival in Richmond over the weekend
and when I came back we'd had a spurt of snow and winds ... poor 'nana plant was getting beat up -
so, yesterday I pulled it from the pot and dug it up as best I could! What a heavy plant!

In the photo below its standing on a black plastic trash bag waiting for me to carve off the pups and the excess soil ...

It's currently laying down by our screened in back porch, awaiting a decision where to store it -
the furnace is in the laundry room and it's pretty warm in the winter - not sure about standing it up
in our unheated shed (field mice would probably eat it!) - we have no crawl space or anything like that.
Next year I'll plant it right in the ground!

I did cut the pups off with a razor knife and put them in smaller pots in the living room
beside the super-dwarf cavendish plants and a couple Elephant ears I've repotted ...

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Old 11-03-2011, 04:50 PM   #15 (permalink)
 
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Default Re: Storing bananas for winter!!! UGH!!!

Hauled the poor thing around back -
now I have to find somewhere to lay it out for the winter!

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Old 11-03-2011, 07:21 PM   #16 (permalink)
 
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Default Re: Storing bananas for winter!!! UGH!!!

Do you have a basement? If so, I'd use that (as I do). I also cut off all but the topmost leaf, and store bare root leaning against the wall. Good luck. (Of course, if your banana is a basjoo, indeed plant it next year in the ground. They do fine here w/o protection, dying back to the ground and then coming up in the spring with more pups each year.)
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Old 11-04-2011, 02:10 PM   #17 (permalink)
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Default Re: Storing bananas for winter!!! UGH!!!

Is it ok to store the bare-root banana in the garage; I don't have a basement. Maybe I can winterize it in a big box or covered with thin blanket to keep it dark when we open the garage. Does any one think this is ok? This is how I store my casava(tapioca) tree in the garage. If this is not ok, maybe I just put dirt on garden cart with the dug-up banana and store it in the garage; would that be ok? and thanks for the picture. I really need to dig mine up asap. My first time winterizing banana without pot.

From North East Dallas. Zone 8b.
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Old 11-05-2011, 10:51 AM   #18 (permalink)
 
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Default Re: Storing bananas for winter!!! UGH!!!

My laundry room/furnace/workshop is pretty full of spares and such -
but its not very cool -
Plus - I have no way to stand this monster up inside - its just too tall!

Maybe I can put it in the unheated shed out back - if the field mice and critters that winter in there don't make a meal and a nest out of the root ball and corm/bulb!
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Old 11-05-2011, 04:52 PM   #19 (permalink)
 
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Default Re: Storing bananas for winter!!! UGH!!!

My basement is pretty warm too what with the radiant heat from the furnace. I don't have a lot of light, so maybe that's why the seem to do OK bare root. (Exception- small ones, Zebrinas, and Siam Ruby get potted and stay in the basement). I'd trim the leaves down until you could fit it inside; it'll put out new leaves easily next spring. Hell, some of my bare root folks start growing their new leaves in the spring while they're still in the basement.

I did chicken out and will pot up my Mekong Giant, as it's still pretty small and I was leery of leaving it out at this size.
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Old 11-06-2011, 03:21 PM   #20 (permalink)
 
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Default Re: Storing bananas for winter!!! UGH!!!

When you dig nanas and store them for winter, do they need complete darkness? What's the min and max temp they can take while in storage? Thanks for the info.

Stan in Homosassa
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