My basjoo experiment

chrisware(5-6 wv)April 3, 2012

Last year after reading about digging deeper holes for basjoo, I decided to do it especially since I had pups coming out the wazoo...most of them about three feet tall

As always I keep one plant in my classroom as insurance and winter greenery for the kids. Then I left an old one planted just below ground level alone and covered with a garbage bag full of sawdust and planer shavings. A second one planted over two feet deep was really large so I cut it down to about three feet, put a terra cotta chimney square over it, filled it with leaves and inverted a trash can over it.

A third one was also planedt over two feet deep, cut to about a foot, and covered with chicken wire and plastic over it.

A fourth was planted at a foot deep, cut back to about a foot and half tall and covered with a large nursery filled with leaves and inverted with a rock on top.

Guess what... Here in cold WV with our freezing ,thawing, snowy, wet winter... All are alive and growing!!!

This year I'm going to plant some more pups really deep too and maybe not even protect a couple just to see what they do.

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Randy31513(Georgia 8b)

That is really interesting. This will be my first year growing bananas so I am open to ideas on how to winter protect them.

I have grown pineapples in the ground but these large plants offer a bigger challenge.

I will watch for your updates.

Here is a link that might be useful: Georgia Home Orchard

    Bookmark   April 3, 2012 at 5:51AM
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mksmth zone 6b Tulsa Oklahoma(6b)

here in northeast oklahoma we had a mild winter compared to last year. Snow fall was almost nill and march was the warmest on record. the only protection these basjoo got was their own leaves. You can see the mother corm in front isnt going to do anything but all the pups from last year and the new ones are thriving. We did have a few nights in a row in the teens. This winter I will try harder to save more of the p-stems

    Bookmark   April 3, 2012 at 4:17PM
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chrisware(5-6 wv)

Yours put out a lot of pups last year! The ones I planted deep haven't had any reach the surface, but one from the previous year produced three really large pups that survived well.

I kept two last year in my classroom. They have lots of pups that I want to cut out and plant. I even kept one pup in my garage and just let it dry up except for watering it a little each holiday just like I do with my It's coming out really fast too.

    Bookmark   April 3, 2012 at 9:46PM
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mksmth zone 6b Tulsa Oklahoma(6b)

Yeah this one really pups a lot. Last summer it had, not including the 3 of size now, but about 7-8 pups. I only was able to keep one alive and its now in the front yard and is about 5 feet tall. Hopefully with it head start it might fruit this year. I just hope it pups before then so I dont have to transplant back in its spot. This year I plan to separate a bunch since I know how to keep them alive better.

mike

    Bookmark   April 4, 2012 at 11:15AM
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chrisware(5-6 wv)

Sounds good. I'm just amazed at what has come out as hardy in the last ten years or so.

Someday I want to try some gunnera

    Bookmark   April 4, 2012 at 9:29PM
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Randy31513(Georgia 8b)

Have y'all tried growing pineapples? They really go hand in hand with bananas just no plants to buy. I got two pineapples last year.

Here is a link that might be useful: Georgia Home Orchard

    Bookmark   April 5, 2012 at 7:09AM
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mksmth zone 6b Tulsa Oklahoma(6b)

Randy

I have one pineapple that should hopefully fruit this year. I had one last year that also would have if my dog didnt think it was a chew toy,LOL.

Everytime pineapples are on sale Ill buy a few to eat and also root. The one I have now is growing good but it is very floppy like the roots arent strong. Its been rooted for a good 8 months.

Mike

    Bookmark   April 5, 2012 at 10:19AM
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Randy31513(Georgia 8b)

Mike the roots are not very strong or at least on mine they are not. I put old apples around the first one I got to fruit but the fruit quality was down. I read latter that was a problem with premature fruiting. The second one fruited on its on and delicious. I got several pups off of the pineapple plant and they should do better.

Randy

    Bookmark   April 5, 2012 at 4:24PM
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chrisware(5-6 wv)

Randy...
I really need to do that. I've always given my rooted pineapples to my students to,grow

    Bookmark   April 5, 2012 at 11:22PM
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Randy31513(Georgia 8b)

LOL one advantage to pineapple is the pots are smaller.

    Bookmark   April 6, 2012 at 6:22AM
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mksmth zone 6b Tulsa Oklahoma(6b)

Thanks Randy

I figured they were not very strong. Im wanting to say I rooted mine about this time last year. How long did you wait for yours to fruit on its own?

mike

    Bookmark   April 6, 2012 at 8:44AM
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Randy31513(Georgia 8b)

Its like bananas, it takes two years to be in a position to fruit. It is thought the long-cool nights is what trigger's the bloom cycle. The first one bloomed around the 1st of April. The second one bloomed around July 1st.

The first thing you will notice is the base of the leaves starts getting thicker.

    Bookmark   April 6, 2012 at 1:48PM
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RichinAR(6)

I'm enjoying y'all's comments. I've grown bananas before, but this is my first year trying the basjoo. I'm wondering how heavily you fertilize, and if there is a correlation there with the number of pups you're getting. It seems logical that the more nutrients available, the better the plant will do. Once I house sat in Hawaii and the owner had bananas in his yard which he said never produced. While he was away I fertilized and by the time he came back there were little bananas on his plants.

    Bookmark   April 7, 2012 at 6:03AM
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mksmth zone 6b Tulsa Oklahoma(6b)

Hey Rich

Last year I didnt stick to any kind of fert schedule. Every once in a while i put some all purpose stuff on them. This year I put down a good amount of milorganite because I have read that it works well. from what I know they love heat, water,and food. so while its warm I try to water them a lot and feed them a bunch.

mike

    Bookmark   April 9, 2012 at 11:28AM
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mksmth zone 6b Tulsa Oklahoma(6b)

The picture I posted above was taken 9 days ago on 4-1, this one was just this morning.

These guys are going to get huge this year. the only thing they have gotten is water and milorganite. Our highs have been around 60-70 and overnight around 50, for sure not classic banana heat.

    Bookmark   April 10, 2012 at 9:30AM
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Randy31513(Georgia 8b)

Nice looking plants and boy are they really growing. I am excited about mine starting to grow like yours.

Randy

    Bookmark   April 10, 2012 at 1:55PM
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matthew_2007(5b)

good way of protecting you bananas. I uses trash can this year too and some christmas lights around Jan. How do I go about uploading pics? Im new sorry :P

    Bookmark   April 22, 2012 at 3:55PM
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