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MUSA basjoo

Image of Musa basjoo

James Burghardt

Family

Musaceae

Botanical Name

MUSA basjoo

Plant Common Name

Hardy Banana

General Description

Of all the bananas, this is the most hardy and amenable to colder climates. Hardy banana or Japanese fiber banana is an evergreen, tree-like perennial native to Japan. Its immense, arching, paddle-shaped leaves have horizontal ribbed veins and lend a tropical look to the landscape. They remain evergreen year round in subtropical to tropical areas but are deciduous in more temperate regions. In summer, it bears pendent spikes of flowers in the axils of large, brown floral bracts. The flowers sometimes give rise to bunches of small unpalatable bananas.

This bold ornamental grows best in sites with full sun, ample summer moisture, and well-drained, fertile soil. Its leaves are easily tattered by wind, so it's best to plant it in sheltered areas where high winds don't blow. As its name suggests, hardy banana is said to be the hardiest of all Musa species. It will often regrow from the base if frozen to the ground, provided it is well mulched. It also does well in large containers that can be moved indoors to overwinter, especially in very cold regions. Plant this bold, beautiful plants as a a specimen for tropical effect. It grows very quickly to provide green cover fast.

Characteristics

  • AHS Heat Zone

    12 - 6

  • USDA Hardiness Zone

    6 - 11

  • Sunset Zone

    H1, H2, 2a, 2b, 3a, 3b, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24

  • Plant Type

    Perennial

  • Sun Exposure

    Full Sun

  • Height

    10'-15' / 3.0m - 4.6m

  • Width

    8'-12' / 2.4m - 3.7m

  • Bloom Time

    Summer

  • Native To

    Japan

Growing Conditions

  • Soil pH

    Acidic, Neutral

  • Soil Drainage

    Well Drained

  • Soil type

    Loam

  • Growth Rate

    Fast

  • Water Requirements

    Average Water

  • Habit

    Upright/Erect

  • Seasonal Interest

    Spring, Summer, Fall, Winter

Ornamental Features

  • Flower Interest

    Showy

  • Flower Color

    Yellow, Brown

  • Fruit Color

    Yellow Green

  • Foliage Color (Spring)

    Green

  • Foliage Color (Summer)

    Green

  • Foliage Color (Fall)

    Green

  • Foliage Color (Winter)

    Green

  • Bark Color

    Green, Tan

  • Fragrant Flowers

    No

  • Fragrant Fruit

    No

  • Fragrant Foliage

    No

  • Bark or Stem Fragrant

    No

  • Flower Petal Number

    Single

  • Repeat Bloomer

    Yes

  • Showy Fruit

    Yes

  • Edible Fruit

    No

  • Showy Foliage

    Yes

  • Foliage Texture

    Bold

  • Foliage Sheen

    Glossy

  • Evergreen

    Yes

  • Showy Bark

    No

Special Characteristics

  • Usage

    Bedding Plant, Container, Feature Plant, Foundation, Houseplant, Mixed Border, Tropical

  • Sharp or Has Thorns

    No

  • Invasive

    No

  • Self-Sowing

    No