Musa sikkimensis ‘Red Tiger’, known as the Darjeeling banana is a truly fabulous hardy banana plant from the foothills of the Himalayas unsurprisingly in the Sikkim provence. For us this means ‘Red Tiger’ naturally has a good resistence to winter cold, regularly experiencing freezing temperatures each winter. Here in the UK Musa sikkimensis ‘Red Tiger’ is surely one of the most exotic. Arguably the most colourful larged leaved plant available to us, with huge paddle shaped leaves up to 2m or more long. Deep green streaked randomly with red on the upper surface and dark maroon red on the underside. Wow.
It is generally ac cepted Musa basjoo the Japanese hardy banana is the UK’s hardiest banana for cool climates but really Musa sikkimensis is in my opinion just as tough and undeniably much more attractive, the leaves as well as being coloured are also thicker and stronger then Musa basjoo. When grown side by sidehere in West Sussex, Musa sikkimensis regularly out performs Musa basjoo with trunks regulalry reaching 3 or 4m in height.
As with Musa basjoo we recommend for maximum growth and size, some form of winter protection, either by wrapping the trunks in straw or hessian, even fleece to stop the cold penetrating the centre of each trunk. Allowing the banana to regrow each spring from the height it was in the autumn rather than having to regrow from the base. Plant in fertile soil (add orgabisc matterand spoil with fertilizer) in a sunny to part sunny position ideally away from strong winds and enjoy the spectacular growth.
Definitely one of my favourites and looks so tropical when planted amongst bamboo, palms, hardy gingers ansd giant Dahlias.
**The 4.5L have trunks of at least 45cm in height before the leaves start. We send these plants out in boxes which are 120cm in height. As such we cut back the leaves in order to keep the costs of poastage and packaging down. Beautiful, huge leaves will readily regrow.**
**We have some specimen Musa sikkimensis with trunks from 1.75-3m tall which are available. For more information please get in touch**