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Species Bananas Discussions of all the different wild species of banana (non edible), an aspect of the hobby that deserves its own section.


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Old 01-25-2006, 10:58 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Well, I think I've lost my musa beccarii

It was a small plant, but had a pup coming. I had it in the garage with several others. The leaves were toast on it from the cold in the garage! About a week later, the whole thing just collapsed, probably because I gave it a little drink earlier. I saved the corm and put it in dry storage, but it doesn't look too promising. This species really can't take much cold at all, and probably isn't worth trying in cooler climates like mine (7a). Even in Orlando, it loses its leaves when temps fall below 40F, and is among the last species to return from the ground in the Spring. Oh well, there are plenty more out there worth trying!
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Old 01-25-2006, 11:41 AM   #2 (permalink)
 
Location: Lake Charles, La
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Default Re: Well, I think I've lost my musa beccarii

I am new to this forum but have been growing tropicals for about 12 years. I'm in Zone 9 in coastal southwest Louisiana, Lake Charles, ground zero for Rita. I have grown Musa Beccarii for 4 years and have a similar experience. Each year, an inflo starts of emerge around late October or early November, but never quite makes it out before winter. It starts to show signs of cold damage below 45. Last year, our low was 24 and it didn't begin to show growth from the corm until June. By that time, my Musa Coccinea has got many blooms on it. We have had a mild winter so far this year with the low being 30. The main stalks have died but some of the shorter ones that are more protected have remained alive. This musa seems to be marginal in my zone although it is advertised to be hardy down to zone 8. I doubt it.

Steve
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Old 01-25-2006, 02:50 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: Well, I think I've lost my musa beccarii

I think I'll just give up on m. beccarii. Too bad too, because I really like the bloom. Steve, I know of a few folks growing m. coccinea in zone 7 that say it comes back for them every year. I have it also, but haven't left it in the ground for a winter yet. Had to dig it up and bring it with me to Knoxville from Nashville. I should have some hardiness reports next year of some zone 7a winners and losers. The fact that yours hasn't even died down to the ground yet in zone 9 is promising, to me anyway.
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Old 01-25-2006, 03:02 PM   #4 (permalink)
 
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Default Re: Well, I think I've lost my musa beccarii

I like the ornamental bananas. They are a close substitute to my real enjoyment, heliconia; most of which I have to container grow. I live near Stokes Tropicals and they carry a nice selection of ornamentals that are not advertised on their web site. I'm going to pick up a few more this spring and try to wean myself off of some of the heliconia I am container growing.

I'm growing one fruiting banana, Ae Ae. I have two mats in two different micro climates; both with pups, but only one that could be mature enough to fruit this year if we don't have a hard freeze. It's actually putting out a new leaf now but growth is slow to non existent when the temps fall into the upper 30's or low 40's. I really hope it fruits. I've seen one at Stokes in fruit and it's a sight.

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Old 01-26-2006, 05:55 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Default Re: Well, I think I've lost my musa beccarii

I really like the ornamentals too, Steve. In particular, the hardy ones are the most appealing to me, living in zone 7a. There isn't a lot of information out there about the hardiness of a lot of ornamentals, so I hope to provide a little bit. I hope my 'African Red' turns out to be hardy...I sure do like it. Musa beccarii certainly has a beautiful flower, but if it won't live through the winter here then I'm not interested. Musa coccinea is a really nice one. M. mannii is hardy, but takes a long time to flower in zone 7. Mine was just sending up an inflorescence when frost hit . Oh well, maybe when the corm gets some more size to it, then it'll flower in one season.

I have an Ae Ae, struggling to live through the winter in the garage. It'll make it, but it looks pretty rough right now. Can't wait for Spring!! Guess I'll have to though...
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Old 01-27-2006, 01:33 PM   #6 (permalink)
 
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Default Re: Well, I think I've lost my musa beccarii

I'm ready for spring as well. Duck hunting season closed last weekend; only a few days left for geese. After that, nothing to do for a month and an half except watch the dreary weather. The African Red is hardy here in my zone. I don't have Mannii but my recollection is that it is at least hardy to Zone 8 with little or no protection.

Good luck with your Ae Ae.
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