How to Care for Banana Trees in Winter

By Renee Gerber , last updated December 8, 2011

Banana trees are fabulous plants to grow on your property. One of the best things about it them is that you don't have to live in a tropical region to adequately grow and care for a banana tree. However, at the same time, if you aren't in a tropical area, you will have to give your banana tree special care during the winter so that it can survive and grace you once again in the spring.

Generally speaking, because banana trees are tropical plants, it is important to protect them, and you can do this in more than one way. A banana tree typically will conclude producing fruit prior to the first frost of winter. Once this occurs, you will want to cut down the tree at the stalks down to the ground with a pair of pruning shears. Make sure to water the remainder of the plant thoroughly.
Spreading a thick layer of mulch or compost materials around it will also help, as this will help to retain the moisture in the soil and will keep the banana tree insulated during the colder months ahead. You may also want to cover over the mulch with plastic sheeting to keep it intact and to help the plant to be slightly warmer during the winter.
If you have a smaller banana tree growing outdoors, you might want to dig it up and replant it in a pot. You can then bring the tree indoors and keep it in a warm room in your house. Keeping it in a windowsill that faces south so that it has at least six hours of sunlight per day is also a great idea. This will help the plant to thrive during this time. If you wish the plant to go dormant, limit your watering. After the final frost is gone, you can replant it outside.
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