I don't normally bother wrapping my Musa basjoo plants for winter, sometimes this works out fine for me, at others not to well. I've grown it for quite a few years now and some winters I lose all top growth while others it comes through intact.
It's a root hardy banana that originates from China and can stand a lot of cold, the portion below ground that it, the trunks (pseudo stems really) can take a bit of frost but if it starts to get too cold they will freeze solid and die back. This isn't really a problem if you live in a climate with a guaranteed warm spring and reliable summer warmth. In maritime north western Europe we do not receive this kind of weather, spring can be a bit of a start stop affair taking some time to gather up a head of steam, subsequently some plants that need warmth to get going can be slow to restart.
So with a large box of straw that had been used as packing around some plants I bought I decided to give my bananas a bit of protection a while back.
So far winter has been very mild, but who knows what the weather could throw at us in the next few weeks and I don't want to lose any height from the pseudo stems this time.
A cage of wire was placed around each stem, then secured in place with bamboo canes which I weaved through the mesh and pushed deeply into the soil to give a firm anchorage.
The it's a simple matter of filling the wire cage with the straw, packing it in well but not too tightly
When the wire cage is full it's a good idea to give it some form of waterproof cover. Ever mindful of the aesthetic quality of my handy work I racked my brains to come up with something suitable. A polythene bin liner was the only option apparent.
I think you'll agree that it has become quite an attractive feature in the winter garden. Not.
Ugly as they have turned out they'll do the trick and ensure maximum stem height survives until spring comes along and really only need to stay until the end of March or so.
Afterwards the straw will also be a useful addition to the compost heap to add dry bulk.