Helen’s Hybrid – a promising new banana!

Helen's Hybrid - a promising new banana is tested at Nursery De Groene PrinsHelen’s Hybrid is probably a cross between Musa sikkimensis Red Tiger and Musa Chinichampa.

Seedlings from this happy marriage are all different. Some resemble one parent, some the other, but most resemble both like the plant on this picture. Human children are sometimes faster or smarter than their parents. Also in the plant world, crosses are occasionally more vigorous than both parent plants. The plant shown on this photo grows abnormally fast in the garden, has inherited the beauty of Chinichampa and hopefully the frost resistance of sikkimensis!

Given maximum winter protection this seems to be a promising newcomer in our range of garden bananas. Small numbers of seedlings are available at the botanical garden, each with different characteristics. So they are not tissue-grown bananas (= not from the laboratory)! I can’t yet predict their hardiness for sure. Next year I’ll know more!

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