plants, thriving best in full sunlight with average annual temperatures around 80°. A sunny room in winter is no home for a banana. The room was cool, not tropical, and, though bright, its light paled against a sunny day in the tropics.
to remain semi-comatose in the cold basement. But it started out in autumn near a sunny window in a cool room and never made it down the steps. It looks forlorn but ready to perk up after conditions change. And small, because it’s cramped into an undersized pot. I haven’t watered it for months! I don’t want it to grow — yet.
Not that New York bananas are an impossibility without a old-fashioned, energy-guzzling hothouse. Given an early start in my barely heated greenhouse, a short-season banana might actually ripen its fruit this far north. A guy in Georgia has found that the variety Veinte Cohol (www.logees.com) will ripen its fruit in October if it’s 2 to 3 feet tall going into summer. My greenhouse is something like Georgia, without the drawl.
supposed to remain alive, looking shiny and lush green, down to minus 20°. But the cold came on quickly this season, before plants had a chance to acclimate, and there were extended periods of it. Rainfall, snowfall, and humidity also have direct and indirect effects on how well plants face cold. For plants “it’s not how cold it gets, it’s how it gets cold.”