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Main Banana Discussion This is where we discuss our banana collections; tips on growing bananas, tips on harvesting bananas, sharing our banana photos and stories.


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Old 10-09-2007, 01:23 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Overwintering Orinoco

I was wondering if it would be possible to overwinter an orinoco in the
ground using the same methods as a basjoo in zone 6b ? Remove the leaves , cut back the pseudostem and do the leaves and cage . I planted 3 fairly large plants back on July 1 and now they are much larger and each one has a minimum of 5 pups that are now 6-8 ft tall as well as the mother which is at least 10 ft. tall . I had planned to dig them all up and store in the basement but as frost approaches in the next few weeks I need to make a solid plan . I am not interested in the fruit aspect I am just growing them for the tropical foliage . If they will not overwinter as I am describing would it hurt to separate the pups at the time of digging and let them overwinter in the basement separated from the mother ? Right now the basement is around 68 which I think is kind of warm for this storage method although it will get colder as winter nears just not sure if it will be cold enough all the time .
I think whichever way I go I will separate a few of the smaller pups and pot them up and keep them alive over the winter . Any ideas ?
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Old 10-09-2007, 08:36 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: Overwintering Orinoco (pictures)



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Old 10-09-2007, 09:22 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Cold Re: Overwintering Orinoco

Rick,
I'm also in 6b and I would bring them in. My buddy has 50 or more of them(Orinoco's) and has tried wintering them twice. The first year they lived but 2nd year they died. Not saying that it can't be done, but using the basement would be a better choice. He cuts his leaves, digs em up, and lays them on his basement floor. He's got it lowly lit with fluorescence. Works every time. As far as cutting the pups. You could cut em off if they got roots and come from a large corm, but ya might wanna separate them in spring just to be safe. Maybe you should try Musa Sikkimensis or Musa Velutina, I think they'd be a better bet outdoors. Hope this helps. --Nate
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Old 10-10-2007, 06:51 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: Overwintering Orinoco

I never saw this myself, but a few years ago before I started my business I was doing some volunteering at the Garfield Park conservatory in Indianapolis.
The man who was in charge of growing in the conservatory said he overwintered orinoco and dwarf cavendish several years in Indianapolis in the ground by having the city dump a street sweeper full of leaves over them after cutting them down to three feet (he said the leaves were about 5-6 feet deep) and throwing a large tarp over the pile to keep it in place. He said he finally decided it was too much work since he wasn't home that much so he quit doing it. But I guess that could be one of the perks of being a city employee.
He finally got burned out and quit his job there. I don't know what happened to him after that. He wasn't making much money for having a horticulture degree. He told me like $29K plus benefits.
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Old 10-11-2007, 06:03 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Default Re: Overwintering Orinoco

According to another fellow in PA on this forum, it's possible with the Brazilian cultivar. I don't understand why this should'nt work with orinocos.
I see you have the possibillity to spare a few pups, wich you could pot up and keep inside as insurance.

My best advice would be to keep the structure as dry as possible, and utilize alot of hay - also keeping the structure wide.

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