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Going Bananas

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Wednesday, August 8, 2018 - 2:00am

Host: Gary Bachman, Ornamental Horticulture Specialist

Transcription:

Growing bananas is an easy way to give your landscape a tropical look today on Southern Gardening.

Southern Gardening with Gary Bachman is produced by the Mississippi State University Extension Service.

The breeders are hard at work making bananas more cold-tolerant to our Mississippi landscapes. Let’s take a look of some great choices for your garden. Red Abyssinian is a personal favorite of mine. The leaves are bright green with a red midrib. As new growth emerges, it is flushed with burgundy, and it almost appears to be hand painted in shades of red, burgundy, and green.

Borderland banana has leaves adorned with red stripes. The back is a solid red, which is very visible as the new leaves begin to unfurl. Based on trial data, Borderland may be the most cold-tolerant of the red striped banana varieties.

Japanese fiber is widely considered to be the most cold tolerant banana selection. The bright green leaves can be six feet long and are arching out from the top of the thick trunk. And Thai Black is one of the fastest growing landscape bananas. It has a deep, dark purple coloration on the trunk. The midribs, arising from the trunk, also carry this coloration and fade back to green.

The leaves of bananas look great but need protection from strong wind which can quickly cause them to shred. But even this is a matter of preference, because I think the shredding adds character and movement. Even though we don’t live in the tropics, bananas will make a tropical statement in our landscape.

 I am horticulturist Gary Bachman with Southern Gardening.

Southern Gardening with Gary Bachman is produced by the Mississippi State University Extension Service.

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