Proud of My Banana and Wants More.

ashingAugust 14, 2007


I am a new resident to Northeast Florida. I recently bought a house where the former owner had apparently transplanted a wild banana tree from the woods near my home to my front yard. Then my family first moved in (MARCH) the Banana Tree looked like a shriveled brown fern stump. I argued with my wife on whether or not to pull it up. Since March, the tree has really taken off. It now stands over 8 ft tall and produces a new 1 ½  X 3 ½  leaf every 2-3 days. My wife and I both are quite proud of it even though we deserve none of the credit for its vigor. I have a few questions.

1. Should I be concerned with such rapid growth? Will it die as quickly as it grows?

2. I have been told that banana trees die soon after they produce fruit. Is this true??? If so how can keep it from fruiting, because I am really digging the shade this beautiful tree is providing?

3. Lots of sprouts are beginning at the base. These sprouts are becoming pretty fast growing trees too. Can I easily transplant these small trees to other parts of my yard without damaging the original plant?

4. I have found where the former owner of my property got the original wild tree. There is quite a prolific grove of banana trees there. Would it be easy to duplicate the former residentÂs transplant?

I look forward to your responses.

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pitangadiego(San Diego, CA)

1. No.
2. Yes, it will die, and no, you cannot stop it.
3. Yes.
3. Yes.

    Bookmark   August 14, 2007 at 10:36PM
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I guess it is obvious that I am not a native of Florida. My Neighbors say that while Banana Trees cast good shade that they are not generally used that way. One neighbor says that they are best as ornamental plants. He said that the fruit is not even that great. I have also come to understand that my Banana Trees will die back some in the winter months.

1. If the Main Tree dies soon after it fruits will at least the sprouts become as tall and full as the original plant?

2. How long does it usually take before a banana tree fruits?

3. Should I proactively trim back the tree before the onset of winter to preserve the plants energy in the roots?

    Bookmark   August 15, 2007 at 9:27AM
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pitangadiego(San Diego, CA)

1. Yes.
2. in San Diego, 2 to 2-1/2 years.
3. No. Never remove anything that is green.

    Bookmark   August 15, 2007 at 11:56PM
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This thing about Banana dying after they fruit. I'd like to know more please ...

Does the rhizome itself die? Or just the cane?

Having the cane die away isn't such a bad deal. We just had a very hard freeze this last January and most Banana around town, here in BKF, looked hopeless. But those same plants today are 7 to 10+ feet tall and as vibrant as ever after having the dead canes cut away.

    Bookmark   August 18, 2007 at 1:24PM
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