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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 09-28-2006, 04:42 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Who has successfully overwintered M.sikkimensis?

This was brought up on gardenweb earlier, but can anyone verify successful overwintering of sikkimensis in freezing climates?

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Old 09-28-2006, 09:36 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: Who has successfully overwintered M.sikkimensis?

Yes, a friend of mine in Ontario, CA, just south of the lake, overwintered 3 out of six musa sikkimensis last winter (first year plants, too). They were heavily protected. Another guy in the mountains of South Carolina, cool zone 8a, easily overwinters his (but he also has a 30+ foot trachycarpus). Some here in TN have, but this will be the first winter for my m. sikkimensis 'Red Tiger'. Not too worried about it though. Just throw on a little extra mulch and it should be ok.
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Old 09-29-2006, 12:45 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: Who has successfully overwintered M.sikkimensis?

Thankyou bigdog.
Your friend in Ontario, did he overwinter stems or just roots? I have heard sikkimensis rots more easily than basjoo when frozen back. I am a little concerned where I live, cause even though I am in an Z8 climate, it rains like doomsday here.
I have gone extremely back and forth on this, but I will not dig the sikkims, just cover in hay and plastic.

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Old 09-29-2006, 09:34 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: Who has successfully overwintered M.sikkimensis?

Ontario, in Southern California is more like a zone 10. Any banana shouldn't have any type of winter protection, except the extremely cold sensitive Ae-ae.

I have left mine in a pot, outside, in Northern California, but under the roof overhangs. Very minor leaf damage. It is the first one to grow new leaves when it warms up in the spring. But we are zone 9, record lows of only 12 deg F, and average lows of about 24 deg F. With global warming and all, pretty soon, my bananas will keep growing through the entire winter.
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Old 09-29-2006, 06:49 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Default Re: Who has successfully overwintered M.sikkimensis?

My apologies for the confusion, Joe. I should have written Ontario, Canada!

Erlend, none of the stem survived. The corm did, however. Don't sweat it too much. Sikkimensis is pretty easy to obtain these days, so you could just try again next year!
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Old 09-30-2006, 02:56 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Default Re: Who has successfully overwintered M.sikkimensis?

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Erlend, none of the stem survived. The corm did, however. Don't sweat it too much. Sikkimensis is pretty easy to obtain these days, so you could just try again next year!
That's what I'm kind of worried about. I have plenty of small Musa Sikkimensis sitting around inside, but it would really be a bi**ch to loose several feet of thick pseudostem since our summers are so short an sometimes cool. Still, I am going to take my chances. Maybe try to keep soil around plant as dry as possible. There is no other way to find out if it's hardy enough for Bergen.

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Old 06-02-2007, 10:43 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Default Re: Who has successfully overwintered M.sikkimensis?

I just put two in the ground in zone6. got them off a man in pennsylvania that can't be more than 6B and he has some large ones outside. Heres hopeing.
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Old 06-02-2007, 03:51 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Default Re: Who has successfully overwintered M.sikkimensis?

Hi Erlend

I lost one here in the UK last winter. but it was the damp rotting it out rather than the cold that did it.

I'll be better prepared next winter...

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Old 06-26-2007, 05:38 AM   #9 (permalink)
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Default Re: Who has successfully overwintered M.sikkimensis?

Yes, all mine survived the winter outside this year. However we don't get any significant frosts here in the part of England where I am. None of my bananas got a frost because the back garden is sheltered so avoids wind chill.

The only bananas I lost outside last winter were Ensete Superbum and M Nagensium. I think the Nagensium did not like our climate and was already unhappy before winter came.
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