banana tree leaves
Although banana plants are the largest flowering herbs in the world, they are herbaceous perennials. Some species grow up to 1.20 meters, but banana trees are not really trees – they have woody trunks and some species can even grow up to 2.5 meters tall.
If you leave a banana plant to its own devices, it can consist of pseudo-stems, leaves, roots and even roots. Learn more about how to cut banana trees and why it is important to do so in this blog post.
A ripe stalk can only form a banana fruit (technically a berry) arranged in rows of so-called “hands.” These suckers (or stems) are part of the same plant, but the actual plant never really dies. They appear as dead, dying stalks on the top of banana trees, usually in the middle of the trunk.
Banana Tree Pruning banana tree stalk and fruit
As a banana grower, you want your bananas to ripen and be produced and only one offshoot is ready to produce next year’s harvest. The other offshoots only need space, water and nutrients, so you should cut them off before they look like this. If you dig into the base of the severed puppy, cut it off again so it does not grow as fast. Cut open with a sharp knife or machete and cut through the soil and scatter as mulch around the trunk.
The development of bananas requires full sun ripeness, i.e. cutting the leaves that rub against the young bananas and completely shade them. The banana stems take more than a year to bear fruit and ripen, so the main stem should be cut off as soon as it is cold – damaged but not killed. Cut off the dead leaves to encourage new growth in the crown of the tree, but do not cut them off until the fruits are ripe.
After harvesting, cut off the stems and use as mulch or as stems themselves. Banana trees love mulching to protect them, insulate them from the cold of winter and store moisture for the heat of summer. They will most likely recover and bear fruit the following summer, so once you get the hang of it, care is easy and tropical plants are easy to maintain.
The best time to cut a banana bush is when it has become active and bears fruit, but you do not want to cut back the mother plant before it produces bananas.