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Banana Shrub - Michelia figo
Banana Shrub - Michelia figo

Magnoliaceae Michelia Figo None

  • $16.97
  • $14.97
  • -$2.00 (12% Off!)
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Shipping Information
Grows InZone 8A · 10° to 15° F through Zone 10B · 35° to 40° F
Sun ExposureFull / Mostly Sun, Full / Mostly Shade, Morning Sun / Evening Shade, Morning Shade / Evening Sun, Dappled Light / Filtered Sun
Soil DrainageWell Drained, Moderately Drained
Resistent ToHeat
Flower ColorYellow, Light Yellow, Cream
BloomsSpring Blooms
Foliage ColorDark Green
Average Height10' to 12', 12' to 15'
Average Width8' to 10', 10' to 15'
AttractsVisual Attention
FragrancesAromatic, Fragrant Flowers
Additional Information About Banana Shrub - Michelia figo

More about Banana Shrub...

Noteworthy Characteristics

Also known as the Port Wine Magnolia, the Banana Shrub, Michelia figo, features small 1 inch flowers that smell just like a banana popsicle! The flowers are produced in abundance from late spring through summer. Left to grow naturally to its mature size, the Banana Shrub assumes a rounded open form reaching 15 feet in height and almost as wide. The oblong, glossy, evergreen, green leaves are also attractive. Originally from China, banana shrub was introduced to United States in late 1700s and is one of the classic evergreen shrubs of the old south.


Banana Shrub can be useful as a specimen shrub or small tree or as a hedge in sun or shade. It makes the perfect backdrop in a shade garden, where not many other evergreen shrubs will grow.

Culture & Care Tips

The Banana Shrub prefers an acid, fertile, well drained soil with plenty of organic matter. The plant will grow well in either sun or shade, assuming a looser more open form when grown in shade. Though listed as hardy in USDA Zones 7-10 the plant may suffer some damage when severe winters occur in Zone 7. It is not particularly fast growing and can be pruned after blooming, but is most impressive when allowed to grow to natural size and shape.

Helpful Planting & Care Tips Provided By Our Experts...

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Banana Shrub on Gardenality.com
Customer Reviews
4.6 out of 5 stars from 5 total customer reviews
80% of reviews gave 5 stars80% of reviews gave 5 stars80% of reviews gave 5 stars80% of reviews gave 5 stars80% of reviews gave 5 stars
4 reviews
0% of reviews gave 4 stars0% of reviews gave 4 stars0% of reviews gave 4 stars0% of reviews gave 4 stars
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20% of reviews gave 3 stars20% of reviews gave 3 stars20% of reviews gave 3 stars
1 reviews
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0 reviews
0% of reviews gave 1 star
0 reviews

Memory intact.

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by George - Pearl, Mississippi

Have ordered several via the web. Either were slower growing than even their description or died shortly after arrival. These, despite FedEx's inability to comprehend "Do not stand on end", were healthy, huge and in the process of blooming. I know it will take a while to get the size of the one's where I grew up, but those 2-3 blooms ignited a fond memory. Thanks.

Reply from Gardener Direct:

Hi George - Glad to hear that even though FedEx turned the box upside down that the Banana Shrubs arrived in good condition. We have a unique method by which we secure plants safely in the box to avoid any movement during shipping. Also glad to hear there were a few blooms on the plants ignited the fond memories!

Healthy shrub

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by Elizabeth - Chico, Texas

The shrub looked amazing when it arrived and it's done great in its new home. Thank you for the fast transaction.

Great Quality

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by Eugene - Pass Christian, Mississippi

After having lost my previous plant several years ago, I searched for months for a replacement. My purchase was from your company was effortlessly!!!, great service, prompt delivery, and an unbelievable specimen. Looking forward to many more purchases. Thanks so much, Gene Russell

Best looking plants I have ever purchased...

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by Eugene - Pass Christian, MS

My compliments on my order, these are some of the best looking plants that I have ever purchased. Just a shame it took me this long to find you. Looking forward to many more dealings.

Condition of plant questionable

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by Florence - Lenox, Massachusetts

While it had an abundance of leaves and new growth appearing, some leaves were yellowed and spotted with what appeared to be fungus. I keep nursing it, and realize that growing conditions indoors are not optimum, but I am hoping that it will survive and will reward me on the deck this summer. I had ordered a very, very small one from another nursery a few years ago and it never grew! We live in western MA, and I know that this plant (one I loved when I lived in the "Heart of Dixie" could not survive the winter here, so intended to keep in a pot outside during the warm months. While it survived the first winter indoors, it didn't grow. I transplanted to the outside during the warm months and again, it did not grow. In the fall, I dug it up to pot and keep indoors. I could not believe how healthy the root ball was! I am patient and tried to nurse it along, but finally it dropped its 5 leaves while the roots still looked healthy. So, with this one and the larger size, I felt I would have better luck. I am not too hopeful but I am not ready to give up. I do understand this is a slow grower. If you all have any suggestions on the care as a potted plant I would appreciate your comments.

Reply from Gardener Direct:

Hi Florence - Thanks for taking the time to provide your review. I found your order and noticed that we shipped the banana shrub to you in October 2014. On our nursery here in Georgia, banana shrub is one of the plants that the leaves will yellow and become a little spotted and start to drop as the plant is going dormant in fall. I just checked today (12/15/2014) and all of the banana shrubs on our nursery have gone completely dormant and have dropped all their leaves, however the stems are green, flexible and have buds on them. So don't give up on your plant yet! Check yours to see if its stems are green and flexible. If so, the plant should be fine. If the stems are dry and brittle let us know. No one on our staff has any experience growing banana shrub indoors but we do have experience in cold frame greenhouses that aren't heated. Here's some tips for you: To avoid problems with the roots, keep the soil in the container moist or damp but not constantly soggy. Don't apply any fertilizer while the plant is indoors. When the weather warms up in spring it would be best to move the plant outdoors and apply a slow-release granular shrub & tree type fertilizer or a water soluble liquid fertilizer. The banana shrub prefers an acid soil so a fertilizer or plant food containing iron and/or sulfur would be helpful for deep greening of foliage. Also, it would be a good idea to shift the plant to a larger container when the roots become dense in the container it's growing in. For example, the plant we shipped is in a 1 gallon container, which is about 6.5 inches in diameter. Shifting up to at least a 10-inch container now would be recommended. Then, when the roots start to become dense in the 10-inch container shift up to a 14-inch container. Filling the empty space in the container with a premium potting mix or potting soil is recommended. Keep us posted as to the condition of your plant and don't hesitate to call or email us with any questions or concerns you might have. We're at your service! Spencer Young - Gardener Direct

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