Musa - Banana Tree

Musa - Banana Tree

Cold Hardy Banana Plants for the Garden

By Published December 15, 2013 Updated June 15, 2022

Welcome to Plant Delights Nursery at Juniper Level Botanic Gardens. We are a private research and display botanic garden located near Raleigh, North Carolina (USDA Hardiness Zone 7b). Our retail mail order division allows us to make the best perennials from our trials available to gardeners around the world, some of which were developed here, some from our plant explorations, and others from breeders around the world. Between 1988 and 2010, Plant Delights Nursery introduced over 500 new perennial plants to US horticulture. In 2002, we were honored to be recognized by the American Horticulture Society for our lifetime of work in commercial horticulture. This image gallery is but a sampling of the great perennial plants available for gardeners around the world. We do not carry all plants pictured at any one time, but since our mission is to educate and inspire, we hope these images and the linked articles below will expand your garden horizons and interest. You will find an array of other interesting information and fascinating perennials throughout our website...thank you for taking time to visit.

Plant Delights Nursery has a large selection of cold hardy banana trees (Musa bajoo, Musella and Ensete). The banana plants that we have selected are reliable perennials in Zone 8, with some hardy into the warmer reaches of Zone 7. Our banana plant selections were chosen not only for cold hardiness, but also for flower, fruit, and leaf color. As with cannas and other hardy tropicals, gardeners should plant musa outdoors before late August in climates north of Zone 8 to ensure establishment before cold weather arrives.

Hardy bananas are easy to grow, and like many full sun tropical plants, produce best in garden beds with well-composted, well-draining, consistently moist soil. You are not likely to get edible fruit on your ornamental banana as the fruit production season for most selections is 11+ months long. That means that in most temperate gardens, winter will arrive before any fruit does. However, on the off chance that your banana tree produces fruit just as cold weather arrives, you can always try to save it by harvesting the entire trunk and putting it in a bucket of water in your garage. The bananas can finish maturing in this state and will taste fine. For all of this work, you may end up with a few finger-sized, mild-flavored bananas that are filled with large, hard seeds. Have fun!

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