I’ve been meaning to tell you about my banana tree for about a year now. Or maybe, moreso, just show you.
When I bought the tree in summer 2007 it had eight large beautiful leaves. Green with dark red stripes. Unfortunately, the tree had been grown in a tropical greenhouse, and the transition to my arid living room didn’t bode well for its health. One by one the leaves turned yellow, brown, crinkly and died. In the picture below it only had one leaf left. What’s so surprising, though, is that a new plant sprouted just as the original plant died.All the books and articles I’ve read about growing banana trees have told me that they need to be fed special fertilizer at least once a month during growing season, less often during non-growing season. I don’t believe this is necessary. Never once have I fertilized mine, and yet it has grown from a small sprout to a large tree. All I’ve done is water it once a week and never move it away from the sunny window.
Here are some shots through the last few months.
I think this tree is able to live here because it grew up here and it’s used to the climate. Also, it likes me. That’s why I do not and will not move the plant away from this window. And that’s why I kind of freak out on people when they play with its leaves, pressing greasy fingerprints all over the surface, or when they complain about how it drips water from its leaf tips. (I find the water drips endearing.) This is the only plant I’m so finicky about. Honest. I will not—and have not—become the old crazy plant man who has no friends but plants and spends all day alone in his house talking to his plants and shining their leaves with mayonnaise.