The Q&A Archives: Red Leaf Banana Plant

Question: I bought a Red Leaf Banana Plant June 2006. It rotted from the base and died, I believe. What caused this to happen and can the root be saved and will another plant grow? Is there anyway to save this plant? It was a beautiful specimen with eight leaves that died back shortly after we purchased it and the leaves turned dark brown until we had to cut them off. We followed the instruction that came with the plant and still the plant did not survive. This was a $70 investment that I would like to recoup or replace the plant. We purchased the plant from Stein Garden Center who is a reputable dealer of Monrovia. Please let us know what we can do. Thank you.

Answer: Unfortunately, based on your description I am not certain what happened. Bananas need ample sunlight (full sun all day long) and moist but well drained soil. If placed in too dark a location and consistently overwatered, or the container is left sitting in a saucer of water, there can be rotting problems with the roots and/or stem. Root problems are often signalled by foliage that dries out or browns, due to circulatory issues, as well.

This type of problem can be difficult to diagnose long distance. If something like this happens again, it is a good idea to consult with the retailer where you purchased the plant and/or your local county extension right away. Often a plant can be saved if the problem is diagnosed early enough.

If the plant has not regrown since June, then I think it is sadly probably dead. Monrovia is a wholesale only nursery, so any warranty would be based on the policies of the retailer where you purchased it. I am really sorry about your banana plant.

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