Maintaining a Banana Grove

Banana-grove

I let everything get away from me in the banana grove but I’m now starting to catch up.

We got a lot done this last Saturday and I filmed more so you can see how I’m cleaning and thinning out the many banana “stools” on our property.

Bananas are usually a heavily sprayed and fertilized crop but I’m managing them organically. I need to gather a lot more cow manure, plus maybe some seaweed and other materials. There are so many banana clumps to care for that it’s hard to get enough fertilizer to them.

Banana-grove2

Buying 10-10-10 and throwing a few handfuls to each stool would be easy.

Getting piles of manure isn’t.

There is a goat research facility up in the mountains – maybe I should go over there and see if I can get a few loads of manure.

There’s a thought!

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7 comments

  • What about a massive vat of fpj made from the male flowers?

    • That’s a great idea – thank you. I should start throwing them into a barrel now.

      • ‘There is nothing more deceptive than an obvious fact.’

        Sherlock Holmes

        Sorry, I have been reading a lot of Mr. Holmes lately.

  • I missed this one! I’ve struggled growing bananas in our climate. We have the heat, and the moisture (when it falls) and I’ve only ever harvested 1 time. So when we put another retaining wall, which came close to our banana clump, we had to take most of them out. I transplanted a lot of pups. The ones I was hoping would live, died, so I had to come up with an alternative for the few I had left in pots.

    I created a banana semi circle, behind the clump, as it was on a slope. I dug out a hole behind the bananas, and made a berm, which I planted the bananas on. The semi circle, then became our new kitchen scraps, drop off point. We ditched the regular compost pit, because our bananas really needed the feed. To capture the water, I then attached a run-off swale from above, to the circle, and the big week of rain we had, about a month ago, it filled the pit and saturated the compost. But the bananas are still high and dry. I also planted sweet potatoes as a ground cover, on the berm.

    We now have pumpkins emerging from the circle, because of the compost.

    Having experienced how well this works, as it reduced our compost turning hours to zilch, I can recommend digging a depression behind the bananas, up slope, and stick anything and everything into it. All those banana leaves which get machetted off, can go there, and gravity will take the nutrients to the banana, as they break down. I hope to do a blog post about it, maybe early June, as I wanted to see how it matures. 🙂

    • Ha, that’s funny! Just watched the video after commenting. You said, don’t comment about circles, as you’ve done them before. My suggestion is “technically” different to a banana circle though, as mine are only semi ones. 😉

      • It really is a good idea. 😉

        I’m going to try it on some. Organic matter traps are a really good idea. I just need rain to get things softer so I can grub hoe some areas.

        • I just finished digging a long trench, in clay, to start a hugelkultur bed, so I know how tedious all that digging is! Especially if you have clay. It feels like you’re lifting a medicine ball, at the end of your hoe. Although, I use a mattock, and we have broken quite a few! Tough soil, but getter better through dropping everything organic, on it. Good luck with your continued banana renovations. 🙂

          I gotta say though, when I watched this video, I wondered if you would be able to buy the property you are renting, through a gentleman’s agreement. Pay some upfront and pay the rest off, in installments. No bank necessary. Just a legal contract between both parties, who want to benefit each other. You both seem to have an interest in the property, and it doesn’t seem to be selling in a hurry.

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