Last Updated on April 21, 2022
Believe it or not, if you grow a banana tree in a pot from the comfort of your own home (and the conditions are right) then you can replicate the same results from it as a tree in the tropical forests of South America!
These majestic beauties are perfect for anyone looking to add something extra to their living space and is a great plant to own. However, one must not forget that they are a tropical plant by nature so that care can be tricky! This brief guide looks to provide some quality tips that will make growing for and caring for your banana plant that bit easier.
Here is a small table that looks to provide you with some essential information and facts on the banana leaf plant:
Botanical name: Musa spp.
Plant type: It is a Herbaceous Perennial plant
Also Known As: The Banana Leaf plant, Banana Tree, Plantain Tree
Sun Exposure needed: Full sun exposure is ideal for this plant so that the warm conditions of the tropics can be replicated.
Ideal Soil Type: Rich soil that has adequate drainage will always be best for the banana leaf plant
Ideal pH: Slightly acidic or neutral soil is best, anywhere between 5.5-7 on the pH scale.
Size when fully grown: This will depend on whether the plant is being grown indoors or outdoors. If grown indoors, the banana plant will not grow as tall and will peak out at 6-8 feet in height. If grown outdoors, it will grow to 8-10 feet tall.
Regardless of whether you are happy to grow your plant indoors or outdoors, be sure to water it regularly. There are a couple of reasons why it should be watered a lot; for one, the leaves are large and therefore will require more fuel to work efficiently. Secondly, the amount of sun that the plant receives will be very high, meaning that its soil will dry out faster, and finally, because it is important to keep the soil evenly moist so that the plant can grow evenly. However, make sure that you are not overwatering the plant. Striking a balance is important here because if you use too much water, you could risk giving the plant root rot.
Similarly, when it comes to fertilizing the plant, look to use half-strength organic fertilizer once per week at most. If you are growing a smaller tree, then once every 3 or 4 weeks is sufficient. Another thing to watch out for is the plant growing “suckers”. If your plant is well cared for and in an appropriately sized pot, the plant should be fine. However, this can also signify that the plant is stressed from lack of water or overcrowding its pot. Either way, suckers should be removed—but they can also be propagated into new plants.
Here is a quick guide giving you some important banana plant care tips:
- Since banana plant leaves are so large, they will likely start to gather dust over time. Be sure to wipe them off with a cloth to keep the plant looking clean.
- Look out for pests and diseases that can and will affect your plant’s proper growth and health. The most common pests when it comes to the banana plant are the aphid and the scale insect. They will both look to eat away at your plants’ leaves. Sticky honeydew is a likely sign that pests are nearby.
- A lot of sunlight is required for the banana plant; they will thrive in conditions above 18 degrees Celsius; however, they will likely not survive temperatures below 12-15 degrees C.
- Feeding the plant some houseplant food once every 14-16 days will keep it fresh and strong.
- If it is getting too big, look to remove some of the lower stems in the hope that it grows outwards a little more.
- It can take a long time for actual bananas to form and grow – If you are using the banana plant as a house plant, then it’s bad news, I’m afraid. The typical banana leaf houseplant will rarely grow fruit. It won’t show any signs until around 3 years of growth and care if it is to produce fruit. To get a banana tree to flower, keep it growing with plenty of light and high temperatures, such as a conservatory.
As is the case with many plants, the best time to start planting is early-mid spring. This will give the roots time to form and will ensure decent growth in summer months.
If your plant is small, you can wrap its trunk or cover the entire plant with blankets if an extended frost or cold spell is forecast. To further ensure that your banana lives through the winter, dig it up, place the root ball in a black plastic bag and leave the plant in a cool, frost-protected spot, such as a basement or garage.
A banana leaf plant can grow to different sizes depending on where it is grown. If you are caring for it indoors, it can grow to be 8-10 feet tall. If you are caring for it indoors, then it can grow to be 6-8 feet tall.
You can grow a banana leaf plant indoors, but it usually takes a specific climate to grow efficiently. In the United States, banana plants are sold as specific types of house plants and can be expensive compared to other plant types.
Banana leaves are very good for using as compost once they have broken down. Similarly, you can use any bark or old banana skins as compost too!