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Old 05-19-2007, 08:43 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default AeAe and Cold Tolerance

After reading the posts by Lilth concerning the cold tolerance of the AeAe, I thought I should relay my experiences last year in south GA. Last year our low was 19.8 on December 6 (this is measured by an official monitoring station for the state of Georgia). We also had 6 additional nights of 25 degrees or below and an additional 19 nights of 32 degrees or below (for a total 26 nights of freezing or below freezing temps).

I had an AeAe growing in the ground completely unprotected. The low temperature measured at the house was 23 degrees. (I usually am about 3-4 degrees warmer than the location mentioned above.)

Remember the AeAe was completely unprotected, no wrapping of the stem, no light bulbs, etc. This spring when it started to warm up I was not sure what to expect but after the last few weeks, I think it is safe to say it survived the winter. {We had our last freeze (26 degrees) on April 8th.} Here are a few pictures taken this afternoon.





It has actually produced a few pups already (the biggest one was removed and potted up a week ago). Here is a picture of the biggest of the 3 pups still attached to mama.



Obviously this is not what I expected to happen and the plant does get a little help from the canopy of the large live oak that it is planted under, but it sure makes you think about what we "know" about cold tolerance of certain bananas. I wonder if it might actually bloom this year?

Based on the high price and low availability of AeAe pups, I would not suggest this as a method for overwintering your plant but I really had no choice based on the height of the pseudostem (93" at present).
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Old 05-23-2007, 01:44 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: AeAe and Cold Tolerance

That's a gorgeous plant, glad to hear about your success with it. Congrats!
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Old 05-25-2007, 05:12 AM   #3 (permalink)
 
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Default Re: AeAe and Cold Tolerance

Wow,

Very nice banana, do you think he would grow here in The netherlands, i have this winter only 9 night's of freezing. and lowest was -2,8C/28.4 F

My lowest tempeture the last 3 winters was -6C/21 F i have got that only 3 times, more freezing night temps in that 3 wintera are between the 0/-3C = 32/26.6F ....

In summertime i have enough heat ... our does it needs long hot summer with alot of day's above the 30C/86F ?

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Old 05-25-2007, 09:18 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: AeAe and Cold Tolerance

Your Ae Ae is one of the very best that I have seen in a garden. People talk about success but you have shown it to us, thank you. Your conditions are warmer then most of interior Florida. But this should give hope to Floridians living near the ocean or gulf.
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Old 05-25-2007, 11:04 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Default Re: AeAe and Cold Tolerance

Thanks MediaHound, Exotic Life and Jnstropic for the kind words.

Richard

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Old 05-26-2007, 12:01 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Default Re: AeAe and Cold Tolerance

I see you have the mosquito magnet, too.
I have one and it's great... with all the bromeliads, rain, and warm weather, and all the time we spend outside, it's a must down here.
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Old 05-26-2007, 12:40 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Default Re: AeAe and Cold Tolerance

I agree. Before we got it you could hardly stand to be outside long enough to throw the ball for the dogs. Even though we have been very dry this year, there are still mosquitoes around which really surprises me.
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Old 04-22-2008, 08:27 AM   #8 (permalink)
 
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Default Re: AeAe and Cold Tolerance

haha. that looks so out of place for the environment but its awesome.
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Old 04-22-2008, 08:58 AM   #9 (permalink)
 
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Default Re: AeAe and Cold Tolerance

nice! I didn't know that they were that cold hardy, did the ae ae lost all the leaves in the cold?
Robbin, Ae Ae's can't survive here, the winters are too wet and too cold (no high day temperatures) and the summers are too short.
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Old 04-22-2008, 09:04 AM   #10 (permalink)
 
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Default Re: AeAe and Cold Tolerance

i wonder if you surround it with more cold-hardy bananas if it will act as insulation and increase both humidity and heat around it.
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Old 04-25-2008, 10:54 AM   #11 (permalink)
 
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Default Re: AeAe and Cold Tolerance

GATrops,

Nice AeAe, looks beautiful, I wish you continued luck.

Dean
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Old 10-27-2008, 04:06 PM   #12 (permalink)
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Default Re: AeAe and Cold Tolerance

That is fantastic news! Now there is hope for those of us in Z9. I think the real key is having it in the ground. I just gotta do it, even though digging in our "soil" is done with a pick and a jackhammer. Jarred, send that electric shovel of yours up here.
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Old 10-27-2008, 05:19 PM   #13 (permalink)
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Default Re: AeAe and Cold Tolerance

Scot, my enthusiasm was similar to yours when I first saw Richard's (GATrops) discussions of his Ae Ae success, but this is sort of an old thread and not really "news". But it does give me the opportunity to bring up a bit of trivia on the origin (supposedly) of the term "news". Some paper used it to refer to information from the North, East, West and South.

I had three Ae Ae at one time but two died late last winter indoors for reasons I don't know. I think I was so afraiid of over-watering them that they didn't get enough water. I had planned to plant at least one outside but since I only had one left, it stayed in my greenhouse all summer and is doing great. I just bought another one a month ago or so but it's a bit late to be moving my big one outside now so I'm waiting until next spring.

I think a big part of Richard's success besides being in the ground is the frost protection his plant gets from the big oak tree. I really wish I had something similar but am going to resort to a large shade structure.

Good luck with yours!

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Old 10-27-2008, 07:49 PM   #14 (permalink)
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Default Re: AeAe and Cold Tolerance

Interesting about the word News. It makes sense. I have 3 Aeae's as well. I gave one away, but the 2 that remain are going to make it or die trying. I just got a fabric greenhouse to keep them out of the frost (in case we get any this year) and will contrive something to keep some heat inside of it. They will be going into the ground next spring, but I have some trees that might help too.
If it lives, it lives - if it dies, it dies. I will find out one way or the other. My thinking is that it will either survive and come back stronger in spring, or it will just fade into dust (but not before I dig up the corm for TC experiments!) Let us bow our heads....
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Old 10-27-2008, 08:23 PM   #15 (permalink)
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Default Re: AeAe and Cold Tolerance

I'm not quite that firm with my Ae Ae....if one dies in the ground, I'll probably babe the other and try growing in in the ground from May through September and then whack it back, pot it up into a bit pot (barrel) and grow in in the greenhouse the rest of the year. Brent reported great success (and great pup production) doing that in a prior job and I'm willing to try that as long as my back holds out.

Good luck to you!
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Old 10-28-2008, 12:13 AM   #16 (permalink)
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Default Re: AeAe and Cold Tolerance

I have given some thought to the fabric greenhouse arrangement. I am going to put it parallel to the house on top of a rock garden with paving all around it. The south facing wall of the house will gather heat all day, as will the rocks and pavement. This should provide enough heat to keep the plants protected inside. They may not thrive in there, but I don't think I will lose them either. The less cold-sensitive plants will just have to tough it out where they are now, although I may move them onto the rocks next to the greenhouse to help them get a bit more sun. One of the AeAe's will be in the greenhouse, the other in the garage, just in case. This will be a test to ascertain which method is better for overwintering them here.
The only things I will take inside are the Siam Ruby, Dwarf Namwah Pearls, Cuban Red and a few real small banana plants that haven't had time to really get established.
They will be placed in the garage and brought outside during the warmer parts of the day for some sun.
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Old 10-28-2008, 12:36 PM   #17 (permalink)
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Default Re: AeAe and Cold Tolerance

I overwintered my first Ae-Ae in the ground here in SE TX. It was sort of small and it died back quite a bit but was coming back with it's first leaf when I clumsily tripped over it and killed it that spring.

The Ae-Ae that I have now was approx. 6' tall just prior to Ike coming through and partially laying it over. It was about as large as my calf at the base. After Ike it has really struggled and wasn't putting out any new leaves. I noticed it putting out a funny looking leaf last week so I went to look closer and saw that the center part of the pstem was separating from the outer part. I'm probably not doing a good job of explaining this, but it's as if someone took a razor blade and split one side of the pstem lengthwise a couple of layers in, then popped the center portion of the pstem out somewhat. It almost looks like two plants growing side-by-side until you realize that one of them is now hollow. I have some pics of it but have not had a chance to post them. I do plan to leave it in the ground this winter and wrap the pstem or put some bagged leaves around it. It is growing very near some large American hollies, a maple, and an oak, so I think that will help.
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Old 10-28-2008, 02:06 PM   #18 (permalink)
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Default Re: AeAe and Cold Tolerance

Good luck, Brent. I did a similar surgery on my small variegated Basjoo recently. Just earlier I was looking at another potted pup and thinking I should whack off he top so that the new leaves could emerge.
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Old 10-28-2008, 02:12 PM   #19 (permalink)
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Default Re: AeAe and Cold Tolerance

Quote:
Originally Posted by Chironex View Post
If it lives, it lives - if it dies, it dies. I will find out one way or the other. My thinking is that it will either survive and come back stronger in spring, or it will just fade into dust (but not before I dig up the corm for TC experiments!) Let us bow our heads....
Can you actually TC one? I've never gotten a solid answer on this. I've always guessed you couldn't reliably get the variation with a TC based on what I've read, but I still don't know why. You'd probably have worshipers if you did TC one successfully.
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Old 10-28-2008, 02:58 PM   #20 (permalink)
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Default Re: AeAe and Cold Tolerance

Quote:
Originally Posted by JCDerrick View Post
Can you actually TC one? I've never gotten a solid answer on this. I've always guessed you couldn't reliably get the variation with a TC based on what I've read, but I still don't know why. You'd probably have worshipers if you did TC one successfully.
Jc you can Tc them but they will not have the varagation the reson for this is that Ae Ae is somatic
this is a post from the wiki
Varig8 (miamimax)is quoted as saying:
"Now as for AeAe and variations on sucker coloration and amounts of variegation in them; AeAe is a somatic variegate as opposed to a genetic *variegate- (a 'sport'or chimera). Genetic variegates are stable and come true from seed and can easily be tissue cultured. In AeAe the amount of *variegation in each plant depends on; #1. How much mutant tissue is in the apical meristem, and #2. Where that mutant tissue is in the apical *meristem when a sucker is developing in the corm. This mutant tissue moves and revolves around the apical meristem. Some AeAe have LOTS of *white, some have a little with shades of different greens and greys.Some AeAe are completely green. They are ALL still AeAe. When the AeAe *produces suckers, they will oftentimes produce pure white suckers, which die right away if removed, or languish while feeding off the mother *until it eventually dies. It will also send up some normal green suckers, and then you'll get a few nice evenly proportioned variegated suckers. *This is the reason they remain expensive. The better variegated plant you start with, the better chance you have at getting more variegated *suckers, as this plant will have more mutant tissue in it's apical meristem." - source on the gardenweb forum at

and this is alsow from the wiki this will help you understand why they dont Tc well

Quote from Bigdog:
"There are periclinal, mericlinal, and sectorial arrangements in the apical meristem that can produce variegation. Periclinal arrangements are *where a layer of mutated tissue completely surrounds an inner core of nonmutated tissue. Mericlinal arrangements are where cells that carry the *mutant gene occupy only a part of the outer cell layer of the plant. Sectorial arrangements is where the mutated tissue involves a sector of the *stem but extends all the way from the surface to the center. This type is rare, usually only occuring in an embryo or root tip, and quickly *reverts to either periclinal or mericlinal chimeras. I believe that the AeAe fall under the mericlinal category. I'm not really certain what *somatic variegation is...although I thought it had something to do with tissue culture. Anyhow, tissue culturing a mericlinal chimera would *result in an all-green or all-white plant it would seem, depending on where the tissue was taken on the apical meristem."
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