The giant leaves are piled over the stump and root ball for protection during the rest of the winter. Straw, hay or leaves can be used; anything to create an insulating barrier that will keep the ground from freezing. The best time to prune a banana tree is during the active growing season and after it bears fruit. With winter just around the corner it is really important to keep a close eye on the weather forecast, as you will need to have your bananas Do you know the variety of banana that you are growing? It takes more than a year for a banana stalk to set and ripen fruit. If left in the landscape the first frost will kill the foliage and it will need to be removed before you can prepare the roots for the winter months. If this is the case, cut the plant down to 6 inches (15 cm.) Learn how to prune a banana tree and why it is important to do so in this blog post. Use a sharp knife or machete and cut them to the ground, chop ‘em up, and scatter ‘em around the mother stalk as mulch. Do they have unique colored leaves like the Musa Bordelon banana? The sap from a banana plant will stain anything it contacts and is very resistant to being removed, so it is best to gear up with coveralls and gloves before beginning to cut back the banana plant. All Rights Reserved. To prevent this, it is possible to cut back the banana plants and prepare them for the cold weather. Banana plants grow from underground stems, which tend to spread and produce suckers. To over winter your hardy banana, prior to first frost, cut back stems and leaves, leaving 8-10 inches (10-25 cm.) The edible banana plants require tropical or near-tropical climates, which means that they grow best in U.S.D.A. plant hardiness zones 10 and above. Regardless of where they overwinter, the foliage will need to be cut back. What kind of banana trees are you growing in your landscape? Being traditionally found in more tropical environments, banana plants often experience difficulties when cultivated in areas that are prone to colder temperatures or that suffer from intermittent freezes. Watch the banana plant over the winter. above the ground and either apply a thick layer of mulch or store those in containers in a cool, dark place for the winter, watering it very minimally. The farther north or the colder the winter, the greater the distance and height need to be for the mulched area. Due to the high moisture content of the banana plant, the remnants of the felled plant will decay and decompose very quickly. The plants survive temperatures down to 28 degrees Fahrenheit for short periods. Cutting can be done with a hand saw for smaller stalks or with a chain saw for plants with wider base stalks. The reason for this is the incredibly high moisture content in the stalks of the banana plants. Banana plants. You do not want to prune the mother plant before it produces bananas. As banana growers, we want just one stalk on each plant (the mother stalk) growing to maturity and producing bananas, and just one offshoot standing in the wings to produce next year’s crop. Cold snaps with temperatures below 28 degrees Fahrenheit will kill a banana plant to the ground. Though only necessary in areas that experience freezing conditions, covering the stump with a plastic mesh will help hold in the warmth and keep the banana plant from perishing. It is best to remove them before this occurs. The banana tree’s Perfect Plants offers are all ornamental and may produce inedible fruit to humans (although birds and wildlife love them!). Right before or after the first frost you should cut the tree back to about one foot tall. The Japanese banana, Musa basjoo, is the most commonly-grown banana in the UK. Check out the Ornamental Banana Tree Grow Guide for more information on growing these pretty fruit trees. In the right growing conditions, banana plants can reach a height of 15 feet or more. It didn’t get cold enough this winter to kill the trunks. Check your banana tree during each season. The giant leaves are piled over the stump and root ball for protection during the rest of the winter. FREE $25 Gift Card Included on Orders Over $200 When the main banana stem reaches six to eight months old, let one sucker grow. Some banana species produce edible fruit, while others are ornamental. Make sure to cut the trunk at an angle so water … The freezing-thawing cycle often will lead to rot and the subsequent decay and death of your banana plants.