Bananas in New Jersey
Fri, 13 Feb 2009 12:36:48 PST
I've grown and divided clumps of Musa basjoo eight years now. I used to protect them, but now as the stalks freeze/thaw I just fold them over on themselves and eventually roll them up down onto soil level. Here in zone 7 coastal New Jersey, about 20 miles south of Manhattan, they sprout back up late June and put on 6 feet a month till lat September. Slowing down then, they have never bloomed for me, though when early autumn storms shred the leaves and give them that Gilligan's Island look I cut some leaves off although they are still functional and this initiated a new growth spurt.
Ive rotted out Musiella lasiocarpa and Musa sikkimensis, though pots of sikkimensis seeds not germinated thrown out in disgust at the end of the growing season in '07 germinated in the garden next spring! Ive covered the frozen down stalks of the 2-3 foot tall plantlets with plastic bins, as well as a Musa 'Siam Ruby' whose root system became too massive to remove, and today upon poking down past the mush felt solid corms beneath the ground.
Adam, your Arisaema costatum are almost all germinated and coming up in pots. Only a few of the Zanty hybrid poked a root out and none are above ground yet.
Spring lifts my spirits.
Bonaventure Magrys
Cliffwood Beach, NJ
no bulbs blooming yet and even Hellebores are late

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