Some of you long-time readers here may recall that when I moved to this new location, I planted a Bashō — a hardy banana (Musa basjoo).  It is the plant from which the Japanese hokku/haikai writer took his pen name.

Since then it has grown amazingly tall.  I was looking out my window a few days ago, and was surprised to see a giant bud hanging from it.  I was very curious, having never seen a banana bud before, so I have kept watch.

Now the bud has opened so the flowers are visible.

Here is a closer look at the small flowers near the top:

From what I read, I can expect the very tall stalk to die when the flowering cycle is completed, but it has sent up shoots that are now nearly as tall as the main stalk, so they will continue to produce the same huge and very long and pleasantly green leaves that are so shading in summer, and so satisfying to see from beneath as the sun illuminates them.



5 thoughts on “BASHŌ FLOWERS

  1. Jean

    How beautiful. Under the lockdown, I’m unable to go to my garden so a sight of yours is a joy. I’m longing for my garden and also worry at what I’ll find when I can go there. I hope this doesn’t sound selfish, when people are dying…
    Nature and gardens are gifts that sustain us in joy and sorrow, far more than any manufactured object can. Thank you.

  2. I would love to sit under a bashō tree in its shade and write about the experience, not only the physical experience, but also the emotional one, being under a banana tree with the ‘spirit’ of Bashō! I’m there with you…looking at the back-lit leaves! Thanks for this post, David!

  3. Amazing! We were just thinking about how we could change the appearance of our own small garden. A Banana would certainly make a statement but it wouldn’t survive outdoors in our winter weather. Coincidently, on last night’s weekly “Gardener’s World” TV programme, with national treasure Monty Don, we watched as a Banana plant was “pruned”.

    Musa basjoo is hardy to about -20 Fahrenheit if mulched.


  4. interfaceking

    This is stunning. I always enjoy your posts. They give me a chance to slow down and appreciate.
    (And I’m secretly waiting for you to publish another book)…

    : )

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