Hardy Banana Spring Preparation – More How To

This video is about Hardy Banana Spring Preparation and what needs to be done to prepare the hardy banana (Musa basjoo) for spring.

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Here is What This Video is About

I did a post back in the fall titled Winterizing Hardy Bananas Musa basjoo.  This post shows how to prepare your hardy bananas for spring after that winterization.

What was done for Winterization

For winterization, we stacked bags of leaves all around the hardy bananas and then stacked them up two high.  From there we pushed loose leaves down into any open spaces and put a layer over the top.  Then, we took cuttings from the top of the hardy banana plants and draped them across the leaves, which stitched them into place and kept the wind from blowing them all around.

Hardy Banana Spring Preparation - Winterized

Hardy Banana Spring Preparation – Winterized

When Hardy Banana Spring Preparation Should Be Done

Timing really depends on your area.  A warmer climate will need to be done earlier.  My place is in Zone-7A and I generally do my place in March, depending on that year’s weather.  This year I did mine a little later because we had some late days of deep freeze.  You can prepare them and have freezes without any issue.  What you want to avoid is removing all of the protective winter mulch and then have temperatures dive into the teens.  This will kill the stalks down to the ground and they will have to start over later in the spring.

First Step of Spring Prep

The first thing you will want to do is to remove the old hardy banana tops that were draped across the top as well as any excess leaves draped across the top.  I just bag mine up and take them out to the farm for mulch.


The next step is to remove the bags of leaves.  Again, I take my bags out to the farm and use them for mulch.


The last cleanup step to get us to the ground is to do a final rake and bag around last year’s hardy banana stalks.  Leave any wood chips that you have as mulch around the banana plants.  Hardy bananas love water and the mulch will help keep them hydrated.

Hardy Banana Spring Preparation - Winter Mulch Removed

Hardy Banana Spring Preparation – Winter Mulch Removed

Here’s the Most Critical Step

One of the more important things you will need to do to prepare the hardy bananas for spring, is to cut the dead tops off.  If you wrap your hands around the tops of the plant and give a little squeeze it will feel either squishy or firm.  What we are looking for is firm.  As soon as you find that firmness, that is where we will make a cut.

Hardy Banana Spring Preparation – Trim Back

How to Cut

We want to remove the dead tops all the way down to living tissue, which is where the hardy banana is firm.  Take a sharp knife and cut at a 30 to 45-degree angle at the point you have living tissue.  This cut will allow new growth to start unencumbered.  The new growth starts from the center of the stalk where the living tissue is found.  If an old dead stalk is curled over and tangled up, the new growth will not be able to find its way out of the center to start this year’s growth.

Hardy Banana Spring Preparation – Angled Cut

But why 30 to 45-Degree Angle

The angle is cut from one side down to the ground.  This angle will allow water to run off.  After a cut is made on the hardy bananas they will pump a lot of water up to the top of the plant.  That, plus rain water could sit there and rot the plant if you have a flat cut on top.  To avoid this, just make your cut at an angle so the water will run off.

You’re All Done

Now just sit back and enjoy these beautiful plants!

Hardy Banana Spring Preparation – Complete

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