How Fast Do Banana Trees Grow?

Considering that the banana tree can be successfully grown indoors or outdoors, you may have a few questions about how long it takes them to grow. After all, banana trees can reach an average of 16 feet or higher, unless you are growing a manicured dwarf variety. We decided to do some digging to figure out exactly how fast banana trees grow, so you will know what to expect. 

If you were curious about how long it takes a banana tree to grow, you could expect to see a mature plant after 10 to 15 months. If a banana plant has optimal growing conditions, 12 hours of sunlight, plenty of water, and space to grow, most varieties of banana trees mature reasonably quickly. The variety of banana you grow, whether it is an ornamental or fruit-bearing type, and if it is grown indoors or outdoors, may impact the growth period.

A banana tree that is well cared for, adequately fertilized, and is in a hot and humid environment will quickly mature, bear flowers, and may develop fruit. Banana trees must be protected from strong winds, frigid temperatures, disease, and should be grown in well-draining soil that is rich, fertilized, and has enough room for healthy root systems to establish themselves. Read on to learn some more fine points about the life cycle of the majestic and magical banana plant.

cultivated banana and blue sky, How Fast Do Banana Trees Grow

From Seedling to Towering Tropical Tree

The tropical banana tree is a popular source of nutrition for both humans and animals and is best grown in zones 9 and 11. The banana tree is not a tree at all but is, in fact, a clumping, perennial herbaceous plant. There are around 70 different varieties of the banana plant, or the Musa genus, which is a native of Southeastern Asia. There are many wonderful ornamental and fruit-bearing banana plants that gardeners can grow indoors and outdoors. Depending on the variety of banana plants selected will influence how long it takes to reach maturity.

Organic Banana Plantation On Cyprus Island, Banana palm tree in Cyprus. Banana flower close-up. Bananas hanging on banan tree. Banana is a tropical fruit

On average, most banana trees need a minimum of 10 to 15 months to reach maturity, but some plants may need 3 to 4 years before they begin to develop fruit. Banana trees require constant warmth, humidity, frequent watering, nutrient-rich, well-draining soil, and plenty of sunshine. A mother banana plant may reach maturity, produce fruit, and then perish after as little as 13 months. However, any pups that spring up can transform into viable pseudostems or stalks which may produce flowers and fruit.

banane tree in Africa fresh

Check out different varieties of the banana plant before you commit to growing this tropical beauty, as the time it takes for each type to mature and bear fruit may vary. 

  • Super Dwarf Cavendish- After 9 to 15 months, this fruit-bearing plant will produce flowers and then eventually, fruit.
  • Ice Cream or Blue Havana- Blooms will appear after 15 to 24 months, and fruit arrives after 115 to 150 days
  • Cuban Red- Be patient and expect to wait up to 20 months for this banana plant to reach maturity.

Once a pseudostem of a banana plant has produced a clump of flowers that later become the banana fruit, it will die. The healthy rhizome of the banana plant can continue to nurture multiple pseudostems capable of producing fruit for years to come. Protect a banana plant from the winter cold, keep it under optimal growing conditions, and maintain it with pruning, fertilizing, watering, and adequate light to prolong a banana plant's lifespan. 

How Can I Make My Banana Tree Grow Faster?

young banana tree planted at the back of a wooden house, 25 Types of Banana Plants

Banana trees need lots of TLC to grow healthy, tall, and stays lush and beautiful. Be prepared to remove any dead, diseased, or damaged leaves as needed. If you desire, knock off unwanted suckers so that the strongest sections of the banana survive and will produce bigger fruit if a fruit-bearing variety. Otherwise, ensure that your banana plant is thoroughly and deeply watered as needed, receives plenty of sunlight, at least 6 hours, but ideally up to 12 hours. The soil is nutrient-rich but drains well.
A banana plant is sensitive to cold temperatures, so it is essential to protect it from frost and keep it at 68 degrees Fahrenheit or higher at all times.  Watering a banana plant frequently and giving it fertilizer can help it grow faster. Also, banana trees that are grown outdoors are more likely to grow faster with enough space versus an indoor variety. Plant banana trees in groups of three or more use an acidic soil that is between 5.5. and 6.5 pH, and protect them from the shade, strong wind, disease, and pests.

How Tall Do Banana Trees Get?

Bunch of organic raw green banana on banan tree and its leaves. Cultivated banana

The banana tree is a native of tropical environments, so this beautiful leafy herbaceous plant can easily reach heights of 16 feet or more. Dwarf varieties of banana trees grown indoors will reach a shorter height than their outdoor counterparts. Here are some guidelines for different types of banana trees and their average height.
  • Dwarf Cavendish Banana - Grows an average of 5 to 9 feet. 
  • Ice Cream or Blue Havana Banana - Reaches between 12 and 15 feet tall.
  • Red Cuban Banana and 'Lady Fingers' - Both varieties can reach a lofty 25 feet in height.
  • Manzana - Grows to 12 feet in height.
If a banana is exposed to cold temperatures, lacks adequate water, or the pH balance is less than desirable, it can limit the plant's optimal growth. Make sure to take steps to protect banana plants during the winter and get to know the needs of your specific banana plant variety.

When Do Banana Trees Produce Fruit?

Banana tree with ripe yellow banana fruit, Can You Grow A Banana Tree From An Actual Banana?

The average banana plant will produce fruit after 10 to 15  months. First, the plant must be mature and should avoid exposure to frost or prolonged cold temperatures, which can slow fruit production or cause irreparable harm. Keep a banana warm, watered, well lit, and healthy to enjoy a rich yield of delicious fruit.

Do Banana Trees Die After They Produce Fruit?

cultivated banana and blue sky

A banana tree doesn't exactly die after it produces fruit, but the pseudostem that bears its clump of berries, or the bananas, will die. However, a healthy banana plant with a robust rhizome will support new pseudostems that can bear fruit in the future. Typically, after two years of producing bananas, many banana trees slow down on flowering and bearing bananas. Unless a banana is diseased, damaged from frost or cold, or is scorched from lack of moisture, drought, and overheating, banana trees will produce fruit for a few years.

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