Why are my banana bunches so small?

Discussion in 'Fruit & Vegetable Growing' started by Mark, Apr 24, 2015.

  1. Mark

    Mark Founder Staff Member

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    I have been growing bananas for years now but I can't put my hand on my heart and say it has been a complete success as my bunches tend to be quite small compared to many others you see.

    Everything else seems to be fine and I have recently given the plants some extra feed and water to see if this makes a difference but I'm sure if the lack of hands on my bunches is a nutritional or water deficiency or maybe a pollination problem?

    The banana stock is good and was given to me by my uncle who gets huge bunches in his standard suburban backyard.

    Does anyone have any ideas how to get my banana bunches bigger?
     
  2. Ash

    Ash Valued Member Premium Member

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    How old are these particular trees? Have they increased in harvest over time? I was reassured bananas like it hot and messy (warm weather with all sorts of composting material).
     
  3. Mark

    Mark Founder Staff Member

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    I do have some new trees and bunches coming on but the plant only lasts until it fruits which is around 9 - 18 months.

    One thought was they might be too close together and I should thin them out more... However, I have seen bananas growing in large clumps close together before and still produce big bunches.
     
  4. Ash

    Ash Valued Member Premium Member

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    Oh yes, my bad. I didn't consider the life cycle of the tree.
    How are they situated? In a small pit or on top of a mound? I'm not sure that matters much, but I have seen them thrive in a depression because of moisture trapping and ease of compost dumping.
    In Africa, this is done and it works, but at the detriment of increased pestilence (monkeys are a major problem there).
     
  5. Mark

    Mark Founder Staff Member

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    Initially, my bananas were positioned in a low lying area and most actually died from too much water so I shifted my last remaining tree to where I have them presently which is at the back of my orchard - From that one tree I now have a clump of about 10 trees (I'll take a pic soon and post it) and they seem to be growing quite well. Last dry season they didn't get a lot of attention or water so perhaps they suffered a little, but this doesn't account for why the bunches haven't been very large in the good times.
     
  6. Director

    Director Valued Member Premium Member

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    How much sun are they getting?

    The ones I posted pics of yesterday were planted under some pines for the first 30 years of their lives and were pretty sorry by the time I replanted them. Now they have an easterly aspect with full sun until around midday. I don't feed them at all, just clean up fruited stalks and dead leaves now and then. :)
     
  7. Mark

    Mark Founder Staff Member

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    Location:
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    Good sun - at least 8 hours.

    I have a few new bunches coming on and I'll have to see how they go but there should be no excuses this season because I have given them a good feed and plenty of water. I'll be monitoring them closely!
     
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