Mysterious Plant in Backyard

Use this forum for identification of plants and flowers found in countries outside the UK. To allow us to help provide accurate identification we need clear pictures of the whole plant, where it is growing and close up pictures of flowers, buds or seed heads if any available. It would also be useful to see pictures showing the leaf attached to the stem.
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Oxalis
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Location: Michigan, USA
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Mysterious Plant in Backyard

Post by Oxalis » 15 Oct 2017, 17:05

My husband and I put down a bunch of Michigan-natives in our backyard this past August. But we don't remember putting this little dude in the ground (this is on the other side of our yard from the tortoise enclosure). He just happened to appear around the same time. We're not sure if a seed came off of one of the plants we bought or something. :geek: It looks like a banana plant to us, so we've just left it there. Any ideas?

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I <3 Stevie, my Russian tortoise!

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Nina
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Re: Mysterious Plant in Backyard

Post by Nina » 15 Oct 2017, 17:57

Hi Mekie -- great to hear from you! Hmm, this is a puzzler. It certainly does look like a young banana plant, and that new leaf is unfurling like a young banana leaf. The only other thing I thought it might look like is one of the Canna Lilies -- but I think their leaves are more pointy than yours, and I'm not sure about the veins/ribs in the leaves running in the same direction. As long as Stevie can't get to it, I'd definitely leave it there and see what it becomes (although how a banana plant sprouted in your back yard I'm not sure, and I doubt it will survive a Michigan winter). Keep us posted, and if it gets bigger and the leaves start to fold and droop in the manner of banana leaves https://images-na.ssl-images-amazon.com ... SY300_.jpg, then you'll know for sure!

Sorry I can't be more definite on this. Lol, we don't have a lot of banana trees that spontaneously sprout and pop up in our gardens here, and I envy you if you do! Do you have a greenhouse? If you think it's a banana and have a big pot you could try over wintering it.

Nina

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lin
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Re: Mysterious Plant in Backyard

Post by lin » 15 Oct 2017, 18:20

I have just been outside and double checked my Canna's and it does appear to be one of those. They are also just having a second spurt of growth at the mo and mine have buds as well on some of the bigger ones.

Lin

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Oxalis
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Re: Mysterious Plant in Backyard

Post by Oxalis » 16 Oct 2017, 14:43

Neat! No idea how this ended up in my backyard, since it definitely will not survive our Michigan winter... :lol: Thank you again for another quick and informative ID!!

I was thinking of potting it and taking it to my desk at work. I'm kind of curious to see what it turns into and how it blooms, especially since it will die soon if left outside here. Does it require a lot of sunlight, humidity, special soil requirements, etc.? Are canna lilies/banana plants easy to grow? Luckily my desk is near a window so it should receive at least some morning sunshine. However, the air is a little on the drier side at work.
I <3 Stevie, my Russian tortoise!

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lin
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Re: Mysterious Plant in Backyard

Post by lin » 16 Oct 2017, 17:18

I have found this and it might help a bit for you in zone 5. Have a read and see.

Lin

http://forums.gardenweb.com/discussions ... e-planting

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Oxalis
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Re: Mysterious Plant in Backyard

Post by Oxalis » 29 Nov 2017, 02:12

My husband was able to remember the origin of this plant -- it's a banana plant! Hopefully a cold-hardy variety; we did not mulch very much around it so we're hoping it survives the winter. :D Hope you guys are having a wonderful holiday season so far!!
I <3 Stevie, my Russian tortoise!

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Nina
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Re: Mysterious Plant in Backyard

Post by Nina » 29 Nov 2017, 07:19

Hi Meckie,

Aha! I did say that the young leaf was unfurling like a banana leaf, didn't I? Glad you've ID'd it. My sister in St. Louis said last night that it was 70C there yesterday, so don't know what it was like in Michigan. We're having a cold spell here, with frosts most nights. Can you get horticultural fleece in the USA? It's a sort of gauze-like materal that comes in long rolls, or pre-formed bags that you wind around and cover frost-tender plants with and it protects the top half of them from frost (although I doubt it would protect against any long-term sub-zero temps). Good luck!

Nina

Oxalis wrote:
> My husband was able to remember the origin of this plant -- it's a banana
> plant! Hopefully a cold-hardy variety; we did not mulch very much around it
> so we're hoping it survives the winter. :D Hope you guys are having a
> wonderful holiday season so far!!

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Oxalis
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Re: Mysterious Plant in Backyard

Post by Oxalis » 02 Dec 2017, 17:22

Thanks for the tip on the horticultural fleece, Nina! :) Hubby says a lot of people here use burlap. We just threw some mulch around it, per the suggestions from peeps on Tortoise Forum. We'll see how our winter goes; they've been very unpredictable in Michigan lately.

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Nina
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Re: Mysterious Plant in Backyard

Post by Nina » 02 Dec 2017, 17:48

Burlap should be fine -- just something to keep the frost at bay. Fingers crossed it survives and I hope you all have a really wonderful Christmas!

Nina xx

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