Protecting outdoor plants in winter


We have this tree/plant in our garden, I’m not even sure what it is! Banana? Anyway, we like it a lot, last winter it got quite damaged so I’m wondering if I should wrap it up this winter, I have some spare geotextile and was hoping that would do it?

Any ideas?



Bubble wrap will just keep in the moisture and ensure certain death! We put loads of straw around it and then tie it up with string. We dont cut off the leaves. Make sure to pack the straw into the crown, Ours has survived even severe winters and is thriving

Having followed Colin's advice and cut the plant down to the ground last winter, it is now thriving and even has bananas on it! How cool is that?!

Thanks everyone for your advice. The time is nigh.

With a gardening fork or perhaps a knife, you should be able to winkle out a shoot with a decent piece of root. Pot it up or find a very warm and sheltered spot in the garden to plant it out.

:) Yes I can leave it no problem, the minimum temp at night is still 11 degrees. How do I detach a little side shoot then? Can I do that and plant them elsewhere next year. Gardening is not one of my strong points as you can tell!



Right down to the ground......but you can leave it for a bit yet. You could also send me a little side shoot so that if it dies I can send you one back the following year.

(Comment to side: "Hey Chantal, I think I've conned James into sending me a Banana!" "Oh great. Do they do tumble driers as well? Ours has just blown up!"

Completely down to the ground Colin? Or do I leave a foot or so?



It’s a banana all right! Here in the Centre a few people grow them in very sheltered corners. They cut them down to the ground and use the old leaves and bundles of straw to protect the roots. It will be even larger the following year. I have also seen parks departments build little plastic greenhouses around them for the winter.

Thank you both, so should I cut the leaves off first then or wrap them up too?


It is not just the cold. You need to prevent rai getting into the crown of the tree once the leaves have died back. So make sure you wrap up the top as well as all around it. Bubble wrap is also good, but not so pretty!

Well the chances are the leaves will die anyway after a hard winter frost- however if the frost doesn’t penetrate the stem than you should be OK. You can wait till that happens and then wrap up the top but it is more sensible not to and take care now of insulating it fully. It really shouldn’t be growing in these climes.

Mind you its 29 down here on my Occitan mountain so just keep a close eye on the weather reports and act in time.

I read that I should cut all the leaves off and wrap it up, sounds drastic though!

Looks like Nannas to me, a good sacking around the trunk and maybe a bale of straw around the feet- and fingers crossed and a silent prayer might help.