January 11, 2021 at 9:01 am Reply
I have a large and beautiful banana tree at home, however I noticed it started to lose some healthy leaves and the torso have now many brown layers. I am not sure if the cause is lack of light but I was wondering if I should remove the many brown layers it has in the body?January 11, 2021 at 11:07 am Reply
Are you planning to overwinter it or are you trying to keep growing? I never tried to grow them during winter so I am guessing it is slowly going dormant. I used to bring them inside when the temperatures got close to 13-14 degrees Celsius. Suggestions:
For a container plant that you can move indoors, transfer it to an indoor, southern location for the winter where it gets direct sun for 6 to 8 hours a day (or for however long you can) and water it about once a week. Force the plant into dormancy by keeping the soil around the root ball on the dry side, applying only small amounts of water, as needed, to prevent it from completely drying out. Then, in the spring, cut the plant back to about 10 cm and bring it outside when temps are always above 13-14C and the chance of frost has passed.
For a container plant that you’re not able to move indoors, cut the foliage down to soil level or 10-15 cm high after the first frost and cover it well with lots of mulch.
For a plant in the ground, you can wrap its trunk or cover the entire plant with blankets in the event that an extended frost is forecast. In really cold locations or for really long cold spells, consider digging it up, placing the root ball in a black plastic bag and leaving the plant in a cool, frost-protected spot, such as a basement or garage.
Good luck!January 11, 2021 at 11:15 am Reply
PS – during the growing season, yes, I used to cut the “leaves” from the torso but not 100% of time. There were too many other things to do always! Ha! 😀January 11, 2021 at 11:42 am Reply
Kind thank you Luis. The plant has been always indoors and here in the Netherlands, indeed it is quite cold.
I was not aware they go in to dormant state indoors but definitely noticed that the slowdown in the new leave generation. During the summer a new leaf came out every two weeks and now I see a new one trying to push out since 2 months, hence I was worried. I am okay to keep it on dormant stage, but the tree is 180cm long (just to clarify for cutting it 10 cm)
Glad to hear that giving less water is required as I noticed a bit mold growing on the soil during winter hence stopped with watering every other day.
I will make sure that its by the window.
So much thanks for your very quick reply!January 11, 2021 at 9:26 pm Reply
Bundle up and keep warm. I am on the other side of the pond, in Texas, and our temperatures fluctuate between 7 and 13C during the day and near freezing at night. I have to keep a coat and a hot coffee tumbler handy when I go outside to walk or to do a little gardening (the weeds are still growing and some dormant plants need a bit of pruning). Stay safe too.January 13, 2021 at 8:20 pm Reply
Thank you Luis, it is between -2 to 5 here and indeed best ti bundle up and keep warm with cups of tea.
A good coat, gloves and warm to are the best friends around these days. Lovely that you continue gardening.
I hope Dorothy (the name of my banana plant) will survive the winter as well.
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