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Banana Plant

Plant family: Musaceae

Botanical name: Musa (+ the variety name)

Common names: Banana tree, Plantain tree, Banana plant.

Notable varieties: There are around 70 varieties! Some notable ones include:

Musa acuminata Cavendish grows the yellow Banana fruit we are most familiar with.

Musa acuminata (grows very tall with large leaves).

Musa ornata (shorter growth with inedible fruit).

Red Abyssinian Banana plant

Musa basjoo (native to China and Japan, this very tall plant can tolerate cooler temperatures).

Ensete ventricosum or Red Abyssinian is the plant we currently have in store (has red-tinged leaves and can grow up to 10 feet indoors).

Musa Sikkimensis (aka Red Tiger banana - very hardy and can tolerate cooler temperatures).

Abaca or Manila hemp (Musa textilis) is native to the Philippines and also grows to be very tall. This tree is commercially grown and cultivated for the fibre it produces.

These plants can grow indoors, or for an outdoor tropical feel can live outside during the warmer months. The majority of these plants cannot survive frost, and should be protected from the winter elements. We suggest protecting the roots with a mulch pile, and pruning the leaves back.

When growing indoors you need lots of sunlight, humidity, and well draining soil. Not all Banana plants produce fruit, or even edible fruit (especially when grown indoors).

Wherever you decide to grow your Banana plant, you will instantly create a tropical feel with the large leaves draping over you.

Care: We rate this plant as medium care required. Banana plants are native to rainforests, and will need you to mimic that environment. Warmth, humidity, and lots of sun is best for this plant. Will also require some pruning in order to grow to your desired height.

Light: Banana plants need 6-8 hours of direct sunlight. We recommend a south facing window, or a grow light to supplement if you are unable to provide enough sunlight.

Water: This plant grows very quickly during the summer months, and during that time will need almost daily watering. You will want to check your soil stays moist, but not soggy (to avoid root rot). Regular fertilizing during the warmer months is also advised. During fall and winter the plant will require less watering and fertilizing, depending on its environment you've created for it. If the plant continues to grow during the winter you can fertilize from time to time.

Pets: Not toxic to dogs and cats.

WHY WE LOVE IT ! These large leaves make a room look instantly tropical! Great for those who are creating a mini jungle in or outside their homes.

Fun Fact: Large banana leaves are used for a variety of things around the world. In South India they are used to serve meals on. In Peurto Rico pasteles are wrapped in banana leaves, just like tamales are in the South Americas. The leaves are also waterproof, and can be used to line a roof or used as an umbrella in a pinch.

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