Banana for zone 5 help...

adam1998January 16, 2013

Hi! I live in a zone 5a/5b climate that gets hot, humid summers, (hottest high temps 30-35 Celsius,feeling warmer) and cold, relatively dry winters, with lots if snow. (Average high Temps -1 to minus 7 Celsius, lows usually -10-15 bug sometimes down to minus 20... Rarely though)
Anyway, if j were to grow musa basjoo, how much mulch should I give it? We usually get lots of snow, (average 7 feet a year) but we haven't even gotten three feet this year... Is it true that if u plant it 12" into the soil it won't need to be as heavily mulched?
Also, what other types of hardy bananas are there? Is 35 dollars Canadian a good price? What Canadian stores sell it? We have three retail greenhouses and two that i know of sell it. Also, is there a cordyline forum?
Any help is much much appreciated!
Thanks!

PS what kind of light/ moisture can it have? And soil PH?

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Fascist_Nation(9b)

I would be stunned if you can grow this anywhere but a greenhouse. Sure it will survive below ground with a heavy mulch and spring back up the next year. But how long is your growing season? I suspect you may not get more than a 3-4 foot tall "tree" before it is killed back to the ground. And if it is not saving up enough energy to grow back how many cycles of this before it is dead? The people to be asking are the 2 greenhouses in your area that stock it. Still, how many people in your area have a tropical? Not bad. Put it in the warmest microclimate, most wind protected area of your yard.

    Bookmark   January 18, 2013 at 5:28PM
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tristanpierson(6b)

Hi, the banana I have was only about $8 on Amazon.com. It's a musa bajoo. I've been using the main plant as a potted house plant. I take it outside every summer so it will have babies. I live in eastern Oregon and have never had a banana live threw the winter. It's not the cold here but the moisture. They rot really easy. It's rains here for about a month before winter comes and even with mulch and a tarp the plant still gets too wet and then rots. It might be the temperature though. It can go from 30f. To over 50f. In late October and I think it get hot and wet under the tarp and rots.

    Bookmark   January 20, 2013 at 12:38AM
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arctictropical(Z4)

I suggest growing ensete bananas. See my pics in posts about ensete. They grow much quicker in our climate. You can even cut them back in Fall, pot them and put them in dormancy in a cool basement room without light, heat or water all winter long, then bring them up in Spring and replant them.

    Bookmark   January 21, 2013 at 1:38AM
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tristanpierson(6b)

When ensete bananas flower is that it for them? Because I've heard that they don't produce pups.

    Bookmark   January 21, 2013 at 8:50AM
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arctictropical(Z4)

Yes, ensete do not produce pups. I've never had one flower. I chop them down to 6' stumps every Fall when I take them inside for the winter, so they keep growing back every Spring.

    Bookmark   January 22, 2013 at 12:47PM
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adam1998

ok thank you all! people around here have not grown bananas ouside except as anuals. in Ottowa and Montreal there are bananas in privet gardens, but they are protected. our winters are pretty dry, but we get TONS of snow... ya the only banana ive seen is basjoo... but if i find a enste tyhat would be nice! is there anywhere online i could find a banana? amazon is good so i hear! thanks a bunch!

    Bookmark   January 23, 2013 at 2:34PM
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tristanpierson(6b)

I only order from amazon. I have an ensete on the way right now from amazon.com. I also ordered a Mekong Giant from amazon last year and it is doing good. And 3 years ago I ordered a musa basjoo. All came looking good except for some broken leaves but new ones come fast so it's never a problem.

    Bookmark   January 23, 2013 at 2:44PM
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lomodor(6)

im also a big fan of ensetes.if you start them early in the
house.then plant out..they can be really spectacular..
i also grow..praying hands,saba..they got big this last yr..
like artic says..u have to cut back and overwinter..
but they come back just fine..
good luck to ya...

    Bookmark   January 23, 2013 at 10:10PM
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