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Banana cultivation

Varieties And Crop Improvement

Species And Cultivars > Amruthapani > Tella Chakkarakeli > Karpura Chakkarakeli >
Bontha > Robusta > Vamanakeli > Yenugubontha >

Species And Cultivars

Species

• The banana belongs to the family Musaceae. There are only two genera,
viz Ensete and Musa with about 50 species in this family. Ensete is an old
declining genus, which probably originated in Asia and spread to Africa,
has about 6-7 species, of which E.ventricosa is reported to be grown in
Ethiopia as a food crop.

Cultivars

• There are about 300 recorded cultivars of banana. The important cultivars
are described below.

Poovan (Tamil Nadu)

• The plant is tall, hardy and grows vigorously under


the ratooning system of cultivation. It is a true
cosmopolitan cultivar growing with equal vigour
both in India and the West Indies.

• One of the distinguishing characters of the plant is the rose-pink colour on


the outer side of midrib. It can grow under unirrigated condition or with
scanty irrigation.

• The fruit is medium to small, yellow skinned,


firm fleshed with a sub-acid taste. It has a
good keeping quality. It is resistant to Panama
wilt and fairly resistant to bunchy top disease.
The average bunch weight is about 15 kg.

Kanchkela (West Bengal)

• This is the most important commercial culinary banana cultivar of India.


The plant is tall, robust, light green, very hardy and grows under
unirrigated condition. Average bunch weight is about 15 kg. In Tamil
Nadu, the ripe fruit is also popular.

Dwarf Cavendish

• It is the leading commercial cultivar of Maharashtra.


The plant is dwarf, fruits large, curved, skin thick and
greenish, flesh soft and sweet.

• The greenish colour of the fruit is retained to some extent even after
ripening, but fruits ripen during the winter season develop yellow colour.
It is susceptible to bunchy top and leaf spot disease but resistant to
Panama Wilt. The keeping quality of fruit is, however, not good. A bunch
on an average weighs about 20 kg.

Harichal

• Bombay green (Maharashtra), Peddapachaarati (Andhra Pradesh),


Robusta (Tamil Nadu). It is a semi-tall sport of Dwarf Cavendish. It is
another important commercial banana of Maharashtra. Fruits are large,
skin thick, greenish to dull yellow, sweet and delicious. The fruits have
better keeping quality than that of Dwarf Cavendish. Average bunch
weight is about 20 kg.
• Martaman (West Bengal)

• Musa (AAB) group-Syn. Rasthali (Tamil Nadu), Mutheli (Maharashtra),


Malbhog (Bihar), Amruthapani (Andhra Pradesh), Rassabale (Karnataka),
Sonkel (Kerala), Silkfig (Trinidad).
• It is the choicest table cultivar of West Bengal. The plant is tall and can be
identified by the yellowish green stem with brownish blotches, reddish
margins of the petiole and leaf sheath. The average bunch weight is about
12 kg. fruits are medium-sized and similar to that of Poovan in
appearance, skin thin, ivory-yellow in colour, flesh firm, sweet with a
pleasant aroma. Its cultivation is decreasing due to susceptibility to
Panama wilt. The other demerits are easy dropping of ripe fruits from the
bunch and formation of hard lumps in the pulp.

Hill Banana

• Musa (AAB) group-Virupakshi Syn. Mala vazhai. The hill banana is a


speciality of Tamil Nadu. These are perennial bananas of high quality.
There are two main types: Sirumalai and Virupakshi. Fruits of Sirumalai
have better taste compared with Virupakshi. The average bunch weight is
about 12 kg.

Nendran (Kerala)
• This cultivar is known in all parts of the world as
plantain. This is a dual-purpose cultivar of Kerala. It
has very good keeping quality.

• The fruit is relatively longer and thicker than most


other bananas. The bunch is not compact. The
average bunch weight is 15 kg.

Safed Velchi

• It is under stray cultivation throughout South India and Maharashtra and


mostly grown as intercrop in coconut and arecanut garden. The plants are
medium-sized with slender, yellowish pseudostem having reddish petiole
margin. The fruits are small, firm-fleshed and sweet. The average bunch
weight is about 12 kg.

Lalkela (Maharashtra)

• This cultivar is grown throughout the world. The colour of the pseudostem
petiole, midrib and fruit peel is purplush red. The fruit is of good size and
has a characteristic aroma. Average bunch weight is 20 kg.

Kunnan (Kerala)

• This is a quality cultivar of Kerala. The plants are


medium-sized and slender. Fruits with firm pulp,
taste well.

Gros Michel

• Among the dessert banana cultivars of the world, Gros


Michel occupied the first rank in desirable fruit
characters, such as size, quality, flavour, attractive
skin colour, resistance to bruising, grade yield,
symmetry and strength of bunch. The most serious
demerit of this cultivar is its susceptibility to wilt.

Giant Governor

Musa (AAA) group-Cultivation of this cultivar is gaining popularity in West Bengal.


The plant is medium-dwarf, fruits large, greenish to dull yellow in colour, flesh firm
and sweet. A bunch on an average weighs about 15 kg. the cultivar Amruthapani
(Rastali, Pedda Sugandam)

Wt. In Kg

No.of fruits p 12
p80-100
No.of hands p 8-10
p 13-14
Duration p 2.0X2.0 m

Spacing

• is susceptible to leaf spot (sigatoka) but resistant to wilt.


Characteristics

• This is a choice table fruit. The plant suckers moderately and is medium
tall and does not bear heavily.
• The fruit is better in size to Poovan more rounded with a glossy green
colour and the tip is less pronounced.
• The rind is thin and develops an ivory yellow colour when ripe. The flesh
is white, rather firm but tasty with a characteristic flavour.
• Occasionally hard lumps develop in the pulp which is a drawback. It is
highly resistant to Leaf Spot but very susceptible to 'Panama' disease.

• It is exported to Orissa and West Bengal. It is suitable for the entire


State. But it is not grown in Rayalaseema and Telangana Regions.
Climate And Soils

Climate > Soils >

Climate

• The major banana-growing areas of the world


are geographically situated between the
equator and latitudes 200 North and 200
South.

• Conditions in this area are mainly tropical,


with temperature fluctuations from day to
night and from summer to winter being
comparatively small.
• Banana is essentially a humid tropical plant, coming up well in regions with a
temperature range of 10° C to 40° C and an average of 23° C. In cooler climate
the duration is extended, sucker production is affected and bunches are smaller.
The growth of the banana plant responds quickly, within a matter of an hour or
two to changes in air temperature. All growth ceases as soon as the temperature
of the surrounding air falls below 11° C.
• As long as the temperature remains 11° C, no growth whatsoever takes place. As
the air temperature rises above 11° C growth starts and the growth rate
increases gradually at first, and then with rising temperatures, more and more
rapidly.
• The biggest increase in growth rate for every degree that the temperature rise
appears to lie between approximately 19° C and 23° C.
• The daily growth at 23° C is, in fact, about double that at 19° C. With further rise
in temperature, the growth continues to increase, but more and more slowly as
high levels of temperature are reached. In the experiments conducted, no falling
off or even leveling off of the growth rate was observed,.
• Banana is cultivated under different conditions in India.
Temperature, Rainfall and Latitude details of banana growing states in India.

State Latitude ° N Temp° C Region Rainfall (Cm)

Andhra Pradesh 16-18 16-43 Coastal 100


Telangana 81
Rayalaseema 68
Assam 25-27 16-38 - 252
Bihar 22-25 10-46 - 137
Karnataka 14-28 13-18 Coastal 326
South 124
North 69
Kerala 10-14 16-38 - 301
Maharashtra 19-22 13-41 - 92
Tamil Nadu 10-12 16-41 - 102
Uttar Pradesh 25-28 7-43 East 102
West 96

• Bananas can be grown from sea level to an altitude of 1200 metres. The 'hill
bananas' of Tamil Nadu are raised between elevations of 500 to 1500 metres
mostly under rainfed conditions.
• The wind prone areas cause devastating damage to the banana plantations by
toppling down the plants due to pseudostem breakage. Similarly, bananas cannot
withstand frost to any extent. So, at higher elevations the low temperatures
prevailing cause delayed cropping and slow growth.
• In coastal areas of Andhra Pradesh and Tamil Nadu the cyclonic wind damages
the plantations. Hence it is advisable to select areas where mean temperature is
around 25-30° C with a mean annual rainfall of 100 mm per month.

Effects of low Winter temperatures

• The problems which result in a banana plantation from low winter temperatures
serve to only emphasize the importance of adequate heat as a factor, in banana
production.
• The most important of these are 'choke throat' 'November dump' and frost
damage.

Choke throat

• Low winter temperatures greatly reduce


vegetative growth of the banana plant. During
the coldest months, the leaf emergence and
number of leaves produced are affected.
Bunch bursting
through pseudostem

• The elongation of the leaf internodes is reduced.


This reduction in length of the internodes causes
a constriction at the throat of the plant and
combined with the correspondingly reduced
elongation of the internodes of the bunch stem,
makes it difficult for the bunch to emerge
through the throat.

The top hands


become trapped in
the throat of the plant

• This condition is referred to as 'choke throat' and the trapped bunches which are
exposed to the sun are also called "sun lookers".
• This is a major problem with Dwarf Cavendish. Flowering during the winter period
can result in considerable losses, especially during colder years. Severely
chocked bunches should be cut down to let the follower develop faster.

November dump

• Cold temperatures also have a marked effect on bunch development. When the
flower initiation occurs during the winter, a characteristically a peculiar bunch can
be expected.

• The November dump bunch is small and composed of


hands of uneven size and often deformed fruits. The
smaller fingers on the hands are, in many cases, fuller at
the flower end and thinner at the stalk end.

• The flower end is often black, rough and cracked and


during a good rainy season, fungal diseases further
damage these fruits.

• Another common symptom is the cone-shaped protuberance at the flower end.


This protuberance is pale green in colour. The amount of misshapen fruit as
November-emerging bunches varies from year to year.

• It must be stressed that November dump symptoms are caused by cold


temperatures and they are not mineral deficiency or drought symptoms. A good
orchard practice is to cut down all the plants producing severe November dumps.
Soils

• Banana comes up in relatively wide range of soil


conditions. Two important factors to

be looked into are the soil


depth and drainage. Soils of atleast 50 cm depth, well
drained, fertile lands are necessary for banana cropping.

Soils of Banana growing states in India

State Soil Type

Maharashtra
Sandy soil
Coastal Areas
Black cotton soil
Plains
Tamil Nadu
Clay soil; Alluvial
Cauveri Delta
Loamy type
Hill slopes
Central India
Alluvial soil
Gangetic delta

Andhra Pradesh Alluvial, clay

Kerala
Sandy loam tract
Coastal area
Red laterite
Plain & Low hill slope

• Bananas can grow well in slightly alkaline soils, but saline soils with salinity
exceeding 0.05 per cent are unsuitable. In alkaline soil wilt disease is less
prevalent.
• The physical condition of soils on which bananas are cultivated is very important,
since root development is determined chiefly by the degree of aeration of the
soil.

• In poorly aerated soils, that is soils which have compacted as a result of poor
structure, or badly drained soils which are over irrigated, there is a marked
decrease in root development.

Season of Planting

• The season of planting of banana varies between the various states. In most parts the colder seasons
of the year are unsuitable for planting.
• In West Coast, planting is done from September to November, when irrigation facilities are available.
Planting is done all the year round in order to secure better prices during the off season.
• In other areas planting is done during South west monsoon in May-June, and continues thereafter till
November. Bontha and Mauritius and for Poovan the best time is November to January because it has
a longer duration.
• Planting in cold season is a problem and great care is to be given for irrigating the crop in summer
and also it exposes the plants to high winds or cyclone damage during bunch season.
• In Kerala, where Nendrans are cultivated as pure crop planting is done in September-October. On the
Lower Palneys, including Sirumalai April planting is preferred. February-March is the best planting
season in wet lands along the Cauvery bank as in Trichy. But in the perennial plantations in Tanjore,
planting is done from January to June.
• October-November is considered to be the best time. They suggested that the rapid progress of plant
growth during the four months of the monsoon is particularly helpful in plants in building up their
growth and establishing themselves in advance of the setting of cold weather in November, when
growth is retarted.
• The best time for planting in Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh and Orissa is by the end of the June and in
West Bengal, Bihar and Assam planting could be done at any time during the South West monsoon,
when the rains are not too heavy.
• The planting should not be taken up during very cold and very hot months. Similarly, that planting
season should be so adjusted that during the period of high winds, banana should not be in flower or
near flowering stage. The period of planting should be so adjusted that active growth phase of the
plants can continue unhampered during flower bud initiation stage.
• In view of the divergence of climatic and soil conditions in our country, bananas are grown all through
the year, while the peak seasons vary in different parts of the country. Different planting seasons
adopted in different states are given below.

Variety and Planting seasons in different States in India

States Variety Season of planting


Maharashtra Robusta August-December
Poovan

Tamil Nadu Rasthali April-December

Hill bananas
Rasthali November-January
Kerala
Nendran May-September
August-December
West Bengal
March-April

Bihar July-October
December-April ( East Godavari)
Andhra Pradesh
August-September (West Godavari)

Gujarat August-January

Assam May-September

April-June
Karnataka
September-March

Tripura August & September

• Bananas planted in March/April made better growth and gave higher yields than those planted upto
December. Flowering occurred in less than 300 days after planting in March/April.
• Growth and flower bud differentiation and fruit development were adversely affected, when the
average temperature was below 750 F.
• Sprouting of rhizomes was inhibited when the monthly average maximum temperature went above
980 F. Six months old rhizomes were better planting material than two month old rhizomes.
Fruits from rhizomes planted in April took two weeks longer for development than those planted in May

Planting Materials

• The nature of banana plant has made it imperative that reproduction be


accomplished by vegetative means, since most commercially grown
bananas are vegetatively parthenocarpic and effectively seed sterile.
• There are certain problems in propagation of banana plant.
• Planting materials (Sucker) are more bulkier and difficult for transport
• Proper identification of clones in younger stages may not be possible
• Rapid multiplication methods are required to produce more plants from an
achieved hybrid
• Disease free and disease resistance seed materials have to be produced.
• Besides the above, there are factors like soil, climate, temperature,
manuring, size age, type etc., which may adversely affect the propagation
of the plants.

• In banana, the material commonly used for planting is


sucker. Sword suckers have a well-developed base with
narrow sword-shaped leaf blades at the early stages.
• The second type is the water sucker with broad leaves,
which do not produce a healthy banana clump.
• Planters throughout the world usually plant sturdy and
healthy sword suckers.

• Suckers of 3 months old well developed, disease free


corms are seperated from the mother plant and planted
for starting a new plantation.
• Sword suckers having strong base, gradually tappering to a slender point
with one or two narrow sword like leaves at the tip are preferred for
planting, since it grows faster and comes to bearing early compared to
water suckers.

• Suckers from high yielding and healthy plant crop are selected. The
suckers are cleared of old roots over the corm, and can be stored in a cool
dry place under shade of a tree for a week.
Planting Distance

• Plant population per unit area depends on cultivar, topography, soil


fertility, various aspects of management and duration of plantation etc.
• In general, tall cultivators are given wider spacing than the dwarf ones.
High density planting may be practiced in mono-crop culture, while wider
spacing is advocated for ratoon crop.
• Tall cultivars 9 feet x 10 feet
• Dwarf cultivars 6 feet x 6 feet

Cultivar Recommended spacing

Robusta 1.0 x 2.0 m


Jahaji of Assam 1.2 x 2.0 m
Nendran 1.2 x 1.5 m
Dwarf cavendish 1.5 x 1.5 m
Karpura chakrakeli 2.0 x 2.0 m
Pedda pacha arati 1.8 x 1.8 m
Vamanakeli 1.4 x 1.4
For intercropping 3 x 1.5 m
• A density of 4,500 plants/ha is practiced in Maharashtra and Gujarat
• The palnt to palnt distance is 1.2 m , row to row ddistance is 1.5 m and
between row to row is 2.0 m . considering the per hactare yield , net
returns and quality of fruit spacing of 1.5 X 1.5 m corresponding to a
plant population of 4,444 /ha was found to be optimum.
• The maximum profit in Dwarf Cavendish banana when spaced at 2m x 2m
or 2.5m x 2.5 m. Closer spacing also produced higher yield of fruits.
• From a trial with Robusta banana spaced at 2.4 m x 1.8 m and 2.4 m x
2.4m, the highest yield was obtained with a spacing 2.4 m x 1.8m.
Though there was higher yield in high density planting, the growth was
found to be slower and shooting was delayed.

• Finger tip disease was severe in close planting. In high density plantation
nearly 30 percent of the plants could not be harvested in time
Preparing Suckers And Planting Material

• If any damage is noticed to the corm of the sucker at the time of


seperation of the suckers from the mother plant, the damaged portion of
the corm may be clearly sliced off.
• The top portion of the pseudostem of the suckers may be gven a slant cut
leaving six to nine inches psuedostem over the corm.
• This will fecilitate easy draining of plant sap, rainn water, leading to
successful establishment of the suckers.
• But in coastal Andhra Pradesh the top portion of the sucker is retained
while planting and deheaded to 2/3 size in about 20 days when growth is
visible to maintain uniform height of the plantation.
• All the old roots of the rhizome should also be trimmed. The suckers thus
prepared should be dipped in 0.1% Ceresan at the rate of 1g in one litre
solution for five minutes and then planted.
• In areas of endemic for banana stem weevil, they should also be treated
with 0.1% metasystox solution
• Only flat lands or lightly slopy lands can be selected for planting of
banana. When banana is grown on hill slopes, soil conservation methods
like bench terracing or contour bunding based on the gradient have to be
necessarly adopted.
• Banana suckers should not be planted either too deep or too shallow. The
suckers must be planted in the centre of the pit in such a way that the
corm and another two inches of the pseudostem over it should submerge
in the soil.
• Press the soil arround the sucker to avoid air spaces, to give firm stand to
the stem and for better sprouting of the suckers.
• Suckers must be grouped according to their size and then planted.

Gapfilling

• Generally the banana suckers strikes roots within 10-15 days after
planting, even after 15 days if there are no roots to the planted suckers it
means it has died.
• Inspite of all precautions taken, some suckers may fail to sprout. This
may be due to defective planting or defective plant material or defective
irrigation. So, one should go around after 15 days in banana gardens and
search for the causalities.
• All such causalities should immediately be gap filled with fresh sword
suckers. Maintaining optimum population for unit area always leads to
higher yields.

• So all gaps in the banana plantation must be filled with fresh suckers with
in 20 days. This will also ensure fair uniformity in the stand of the crop.

Micro-propagation
• Rapid multiplication of banana suckers has been engaging the attention of scientists since a very long
time. There is a problem when a new clone is being generated for extended cultivation or when a
large amount of planting material of a specific pathogen tolerant clone is to be distributed to the
growers.
• The prevalence of disease problems and the need for generating clean planting stock in large
quantities have stimulated recently a surge of interest in the production of banana clones raised
though aseptic micropropagation techniques.
• Shoot tips isolated from the rhizomes were found suitable for platelet production in vitro. Shoot tips
with several older sheathing leaf bases enclosing the axillary buds regenerated multiple pantalets.
• Individual shootlet when separated and subcultured, produced a new crop of multiple shoots.
• Each plant cell has the potential to generate into a single plant. This is called Totipotency and when
this character is involved into rapid and mass multiplication of propagules at optimum levels is called
Micropropagation.
• This is an alternate to slow vegetative plant propagation.
• In Tissue Culture when a group of undifferentiated and meristamatically active cell called tissue is
aseptically disserted out and put into a medium containing nutrient and incubated under conducive
controlled conditions of light and temperature, it establish it self and starts growth.
• This is called Culture and the concept of 'tissue culture'.

Tissue culture involved following stages

Preparation of Stock plant

• The elite plants are selected and maintained under hygenic conditions (by spraying fungicide,
bactericide and insecticide) and then the plant parts are taken for initiation.

Initiation (Stage-I)

• The innermost tissue of surface sterilised plant in dissected aseptically and put an to the medium of
growth, Medium contains major and miner elements, same vitamins. Amino acids and growth
promoting hormones, solidified by agar.

Multiplication (Stage II)

Shooting and Rooting (Stage III)


• After multiplication, the single shoots are separated
and placed into a shooting are rooting medium. At
this stage the hormones may or may not be
required.

• The shoot elongates and new root came up. Rooting


takes place within 3-4 weeks.

Root
Organogenesis

Hardening (Stage IV)

• It involves acclimatisation of bottle grown


plants to the natural environment in Green
House.

• The plants are taken out of the bottle and the


media adhering to the root system in washed
fully.

Complete Plantlet

• After wards the plants are graded as per their


size and then transferred singly to wells of
portrays containing sterile medium (a mixture
of peat moss and perlite).

• The whole portray with plants is maintained under high humidity conditions for a couple of weeks and
there after the portrays are kept in open in the Green House under controlled temperature and
humidity.
• This hardening taken 6 weeks and is called primary hardening - Regular sprays of plant protection
chemicals are sprayed to achieve good hygenic condition of the plants.


• Established Plantlet
Introduction

• Banana root system spreads in the top 60 cm soil. Being an exhaustive


crop, proper manuring and fertilizer application has to be resorted to in
obtaining good yields.
•The choice of fertilizers, the dosage of nutrients, time of application etc.
State Spacing (m) N (g) P2O5 (g) K2O (g) FYM (Kg/pl)
varies widely with respect to agroclimatic regions and varieties.
(per plant)
The effects of proper fertilization of banana are
Andaman &2 x 2 160 160 280
Nicobar
Phosphorous
• increase of the crop yield by the improvement of grading, or of weight of
Andhra Pradesh 2x2 bunch, 200 0 200
• Phosphorus helps to produce healthy rhizome and a strong root system. It
• reduction in crop duration
also influences flower setting and general vegetative growth.
Arunachal 2 x •2 increasing 180 100
the number 225
of marketable 20
good quality bunches per hectare,
• The deficiency of P causes complete cessation of elongation, at a height of
Pradesh and
about two feet rosetting of leaves with older leaves becoming increasingly
Assam 1.8 x 2.4 110 35 330 12
irregularly necrotic, leaf production is reduced, and marginal chlorosis and
Bihar 2x2 • Improvement in
125death quality, with physical
80are caused.225 9and chemical characters leading to
premature
high return to farmers.
Goa 75 75 240
Dose :
Gujarat 1.8 x 1.8 or 1.2180 90 180 10-15
40-60
x 1.2 g/plant
Karnataka (DC)1.8 x 1.8 540 325 675 40 t/ha
(Robusta) • Entire quantity of phosphorus fertiliser should be applied at the time of
Others last ploughing or applied at the time of filling the pits.
2.2 x 2.2 405 245 507 40 t/ha

2x2 400 240 500 40 t/ha


Nitrogen
Kerala 2x2 190 115 300 10
Nendran(irrg.)
• Nitrogen is the chief promoter of growth. It induces the vegetative growth
2.2 x 1.8 100
of pseudostem 200leaves giving
and 400 them 10
desired healthy green colour.
Palayankonda • A healthy robust vegetative frame is an essential pre-requisite for high
(Rain) 2.2 x 2.2 160nitrogen
yields and 160 is mainly
320 10 for such a vegetative frame.
responsible
Banana plants which have not received N produce only seven leaves
Potassium
Others against 17 leaves produced by banana plants supplied with adequate N.
Maharashtra 1.5 •x
• 2.5IfStimulates
N is deficient
600early inshooting
720 bananasand the
600 leaves 100
takecart-load/ha
significantly 23 days for
shortens the unfolding against
time required for
Mizoram 2x2 10 days for
100 the
fruit maturity. leaves of banana
50improves bunch
It supplied
300 grade, with
10-20
and kg N.
size of fingers. The quality of
• It was observed that greater the number of healthy and large leaves
Orissa 1.8 x 2.0the fruits 80is also32improved by90 potassium.
produced during
• Deficiency of potassium the first 4-6 months,
causes larger reduction
marked will be thein
size of fruit interval
growth, bunch,
N influences
thethe longitudinal
of growth of petioles.
Tamil Nadu 1.8 xbetween
1.8110 production
35 new leaves
330 become longer and leaves are
10 kg
• Nitrogen increases the bunch grade, and sucker production. Nitrogen
(garden profusely
land) smaller, premature yellowing of plant.
deficiency causes slow growth and paler leaves with organs
reduced isleafexhausted,
area and
1.5 •x 1.5
Once(wetthe
110potassium
35 contained
330 in the10 kgstorage
rate of leaf production.
deficiency symptoms appear suddenly starting with a yellowing of the tips
land)
• Leaf petioles short, thin and compressed, thin profuse roots and lesser
and distal margins of older leaves, closely followed by necrosis and
Uttar Pradesh 2-3 m number 200 100 are produced
of suckers 250 due to lack of N. Phosphorus uptake is
dessication.
higher due to N deficiency.
West Bengal2.4 x 2.4 140 35 90 10-15 kg
• The yellowing and necrosis spread rapidly
Robusta Nitrogen fertilization
in a proximal direction until the whole leaf
1.8 x 1.8 90 35 90 10-15 kg
has withered standing in a normal position.
Cavendish Statewise fertilizer recommendations for banana
3x3 140 50 120 20
Champa Mode of application of nitrogen

• Nitrogen should be applied in five split doses. Nitrogen is to be applied in


five split doses one at the time of planting
o 2nd 45 days after planting (DAP)
o 3rd - 90 DAP
o 4th - 135 DAP
o 5th - 180 DAP
• For banana if 25 % nitrogen is applied in organic farm and remaining
amount is applied through inorganic fertilizers that increases the yield.
• Application of 1 kilo neem cake as a inorganic nitrogen source for banana
not only icreases the yield andd quality but also reduces the nematode
problem considerably.
• Fruits are badly shaped, poorly filled and unsuitable
for marketing.

• Splits develop parallel to the secondary veins and


the lamina folds downwards, while the midrib bends
and fractures, leaving the distal half of the leaf
hanging.

• Purplish brown patches appear at the base of the petioles and in severe
cases the centre of the corm may show areas of brown, water soaked
disintegrated cell structures.

Dose :

• 200-300 g/plant

Mode of application of potassium

• Potassium should be applied in split doses. Potassium is to be applied in


five split doses one at the time of planting
o 2nd 45 days after planting (DAP)
o 3rd - 90 DAP
o 4th - 135 DAP

o 5th - 180 DAP

Micronutrients

Zinc

• Zinc deficiency is found in banana when it grows in zinc deficient soils.


Narrow pointed and chlorite young leaves,Bunch top crowns are the
symptoms of zinc deficiency
• Application of 50 g/plant zinc sulphate at the time of planting is
recommended or foliar application of zinc sulphate at 3 g/litre + urea (5g
per litre) + 10 ml non ionic sticker in 20 litres of water. The above
prepared solution is sprayed at 45 and 60 days after planting.
• For ratoon crop 45 days after cutting the mother plant.

Boron

• Deficincy of boron may results in reduction in weight and size of the


bunch and it will effects the proper filling of the bunch.
• For boran deficiency apply 20 g borax per litre at the time of planting of
spray boric acid at 0.2 % in 4th of 5th month after planting.

Iron

• Iron deficiency has been recorded in alkaline soils and is identified by


interveinal chlorosis of young leaves.

• Application of iron sulphate will correct the iron deficiency.


Magnesium

• Magnesium deficiency symptoms show green


banding around the margin and next to the midrib.

• Spraying magnesium sulphate 2 g/l of water


effectively corrects the deficiency.

Water Management

Irrigation > Scheduling Of Irrigation >

Irrigation

• Water requirement of banana varies according to topography, soil,


climate, cultivar and type of culture. If there is no rain, the plants should
be irrigated immediately after planting. The soil in banana plantation
should not be allowed to dry completely
• Bananas are grown both as a rainfed crop and as an irrigated crop in
India. Wherever the adequate rainfall is not available, banana growers
resort to supplement it with irrigation.
• Proper water management is essential for obtaining good yields in
commercial banana.
• In olden days, bananas were irrigated by using flooding system or basin
irrigation system wherein, depending upon the moisture retention
capacity of the soil, irrigation is scheduled as once in 3 days, twice in a
week, once in a week likewise.
• Banana being a mesophyte, requires a huge amount of water because of
the large foliage area and moisture content of the pseudostem. The
consumptive use of water increased with increase in the available soil
moisture level.
• The total water requirement varied from 1841 mm to 2150 mm for the
various conditions. The per day consumption of water varied from 4.81 to
6.11 mm.
• The daily water consumption was greater at higher moisture regimes. The
total number of irrigation ranged from 22 to 78 for the various
treatments.
• Maintenance of high soil moisture level required frequent irrigation with
less quantity of water per irrigation, whereas, the low moisture regimes
required less number of irrigations with more quantity of water for each
irrigation.
• Maintenance of a high soil moisture range between 60 and 80 per cent of
available soil moisture may be considered optimum for economic
production of banana.
• The height and girth of the pseudostem, total leaf area and number of
leaves per plant at shooting increased significantly with increase in
available soil moisture level. The phylachron (the time interval between
the production of successive leaves) was high under dry conditions.
• Sucker production was not significantly influenced by the various
treatments. The bunch weight and the characters associated with it were
significantly increased with increasing soil moisture availability.
• Total soluble solids, reducing sugars, total sugars and acidity of fruits
increased significantly with dry soil conditions. Irrigation at 20 per cent
depletion of available soil moisture significantly advanced the shooting.
• The shooting to harvest interval was shortened with frequent irrigations.
The total crop duration was extended with decreasing moisture
availability.
• The density of roots of banana palms subjected to different irrigation
levels revealed that the mass of roots was not much affected by moisture
stress, though a slight increase in number of roots was observed with
higher moisture stress.

• The dry weight of roots increased with decrease in the available soil
moisture which may be the result of increased number of root production
and total root length.

Irrigation Schedule

• Irrigate the plants immediately after planting. After that irrigate at weekly intervels for about 35-40
times.
• Rainfall requiement for banana growing areas should be 1500-2000 mm. In summer irrigate for every
5-10 days depending up on the type of soil.

• Irrigation through drip system will


induce early bunch formation and
arround 40-45% water can be
saved. Drip system has to be
operated daily for 2-3 1/2 hours.

Delay in irrigation for banana results in delay in bunch formation, delay in maturity of bunch Intercultural
Operations

Weed Control > Desuckering > Male Bud Removal > Propping > Trimming > Bunch
Covering >
Weeding

• Weeds are a menace in any cropping system. In a crop like banana,


where the entire crop depends on the surface soil for its nutrition and
water requirements, weed of any sort will be of deleterious effect to the
crop.
• The weeds compete with the main crop for nutrients and moisture. They
at times also harbour pests of banana.
• The luxurious weed growth in any banana fields will reduce the yield by
way of reduction of bunch weight, grade of bunches, etc. Hence in banana
plantations, periodical weeding is taken up to have a clean cultivation.
• Weeding is done either through a light digging of surface soil, by mulching
or by manual weeding. Presently, in commercial banana gardens,
weedicides, are also used extensively to control the weeds.
• One Dalapon and Eleven Paraquat sprays controlled weed effectively in
banana plot.
• Pre-emergence application of Diuron at 4kg a.i/ha was effective in
checking both monocot and dicot weed growth. Diuron treatment did not
reduce banana quality.

• Among the post-emergence sprays, the combination of Diuron and


Gramaxone at 4 kg/ha and 1.5 l/ha gave good control of weed population.

Desuckering

• Bananas are vegetatively propagated through the suckers, which are


produced from the auxiliary buds of the underground rhizome, once the
plant crop attains maturation.
• The suckers produced by different varieties vary in number. The time of
sucker production by parent plant is that more than half the number of
total suckers produced by a plant is produced since flowering of the
mother plant.
• Some suckers are produced three or four months before flowering also. In
a pure crop of banana, where single crop is only taken, usually all the
suckers, which arise before flowering are removed as it will compete with
mother plant for nutrients resulting in reduction of bunch size.
• Hence suckers which are produced by the plant in excess, or out of place
are removed periodically to ensure better growth and bunch development
of mother plant.
• This is an important operation in growing of bananas. In perennial system
of banana culture, the 'setting of followers' at proper time will ensure
good ratoon crop to the banana growers.
• In Tamil Nadu, it is a practice to pour kerosene into cavity left after
digging the suckers. In case of hill bananas, unwanted suckers are
removed after heading off and killing them by pouring kerosene (5-10 ml
per sucker) over the cut surface of the sucker.
• While using kerosene, it should be avoided to treat suckers, which arise
on the corm above ground level and have no root system. These suckers
are entirely dependent on the parent plant and the kerosene may move
back into the sap stream and injure it.
• The best method of handling these suckers is to cut off level with the
parent corm.
• Desuckering of bananas by using chemicals like, 2, 4-D is also found to be
in use. A pruning paste consisting of a mixture of 2, 4-D, fuel oil and
grease may also be applied for desuckering.

Setting of followers for ratooning

• Removal of all suckers upto flowering of the plant and maintaining only
one follower afterwards is the best desuckering practice.

• Ordinarily daughter sucker commences to appear from the base of the


plants from about the third month of planting, but in suckers carelessly
removed as to include large slices of rhizomes, some buds may shoot up
to form new suckers even earlier than above period.
Removal of male bud

• The part of the inflorescence which consists of male flowers only, is


invariably termed in different parts of the world as male bud, heart, or
Navel. This has apparently no comprehensible function or value in the
normal bunch formation or development.
• Therefore, the male bud is more often pruned off in many places, where
intensive and efficient cultivation is practiced, obviously with the belief
that the removal of unwanted growth may favour better bunch
development.
• In one of the commercial variety Karpura Chakkrakeli Male bud was
removed (12-15 days after shooting) soon after the completion of bunch
formation, leaving a 5cm length of a barren axis. It was found that
pruning the male bud had resulted in some increase in both the length
and circumference of the fruit.
• In respect of mean duration from shooting to maturity, there was
reduction of light days in the pruned plants.
• In the case of yield also, there was a significant increase of 0.9kg in the
mean bunch weight of pruned plants which worked out to 7.5 per cent
increase in yield.
• Other advantages in pruning the male bud include extra monetary returns
by sale of male buds which are used as vegetable.
• It was observed that the banana thrips which attack the fruit and cause
unsightly brown freckling on the fruit, live and breed in the male buds in
large numbers.
• When the bunches are nucleus foci for further infection. The removal of
the male buds obviously results in less damage from this pest.
• In Dwarf Cavendish whenever the male bud was allowed to grow, it
delayed the harvest by 18 days.

• The bunches in which male bud was removed, were heavier by three
kilograms over the un removed plants
Propping of Banana plants

• One of the important problems facing banana growers is the lodging of


plants with mature or immature bunches during heavy winds and
cyclones. The plants are uprooted or broken at the middle resulting in
heavy losses to the growers.

• To overcome this problem, the plants have to be


propped with bamboos or caesarian poles. Single
props are given. The top of the prop is placed
against the throat of the plant, under the
curvature of the bunch stem.

• It is important that the prop itself is clear of the


bunch to prevent fruit injury. Double props consist
of two poles of equal length and tied together. The
legs are spread to form a V at the top, in which
Plant supported the bunch stem is held.
with bamboos

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Trimming of leaves and care of Banana bunches

• Leaf trimming is an important operation for controlling certain leaf


diseases and for promoting light penetration.
• Trimming is the removal of the dead leaves that hang down the sides of
the pseudostem. It is very important that only the dead and diseased
leaves are cut and removed and not the still green leaves that often hang
down the side of the pseudostem.
• By removing those green leaves, the photosynthetic area is reduced and
the final bunch size is affected.
• Leaf removal may be done throughout the growing season. By keeping
the plantation clean, more light and heat are available for promoting plant
growth.

• Further advantages of removing dead and dried leaves are that the
potential dangers of fruit injury and disease infection are reduced.
Bunch covering
• Bagging is a cultural technique used by planters in
the French West Indies, Latin America, Africa,
Australia, etc., particularly, where export bananas
are grown.

• The main purposes are the protection of bunches


against cold, sun scorching, against attack of thrips
and scarring beetle.

• It also improves certain visual qualities of the fruits. Bunch covering with
dry leaves is a common practice in India, which, however, may be a
source of inoculum for post harvest diseases.

Earthing up

• Earthing up should be done during the rainy season to provide drainage,


and to avoid waterlogging at the base. During summer and winter, the
plants should be in furrow and on ridges during rainy season.
Disease Management

Introduction > Anthracnose > Dimond Spot > Brown Spot > Cigar End Or Tip Rot
> Sigatoka Leaf Spot > Panama Wilt > Bacterial Soft Rot > Bacterial Wilt Or Moko
> Bunchy Top > Infectious Chlorosis >

Introduction

• Banana is much more vulnerable to disease than to the insect pests. The
diseases often occur in epidemic proportions and bring about catastrophic
losses.

• Among the diseases, the banana wilt ranks first. In addition to fungal
diseases, the bunchy top virus has created a situation of a dismal future
for the banana industry.

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Fungal Diseases Of Post-Harvest-Fruits

Anthracnose:

Gloeosporium musarum

• Severe during June-September when temperatures are high accompanied


by rain. Attack plants at any growth stage.
• Both green and ripe fruits are attacked, however, ripe fruits are more
susceptible to the disease.

Symptoms

• Infection of green fruits, flowers and distal end of hands show circular
black, sunken spots surrounded by yellow halos later convening the entire
fruit resulting in premature ripening.

• Ripe fruits develop symptoms from the tip as


minute, circular dark brown sunken spots
invading the entire tip which becomes black.

• A pinkish fungus sporulation is produced in the


black, sunken areas of fruit.

Black spots on Fruit

Control

• Spraying Chlorothalonil 2 g/I at 15 days interval is effective in minimising


later infections.

• Careful harvesting, clean packing, refrigeration at 100C after harvest, fruit


dip in aqueous solution of Benomyl at 1000 ppm or aureofungin 100 ppm
help in reducing blemishes on fruits.

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Diamond Spot: Cercospora hayi, Fusarium spp

Symptoms

• The spot is black, sunken, diamond-shaped lesion, very much confusing


with pitting disease.
• Diamond spot is prevalent after prolonged rainy season.
Control

• Plantation sanitation, good drainage and proper spacing reduce the


incidence of this disease.

• To prevent spread of the disease, spraying of Captan or Dithane M-45 or


Dithane Z-78 is effective.

Brown Spot: Cercospora hayi

Symptoms

• Brown spots occur on the rachis, and fingers. The spots are pale to dark
brown with an irregular margin surrounded by a halo of water soaked
tissue.

Control

• Plantation sanitation, good drainage and proper spacing reduce the


incidence of this disease.

• To prevent spread of the disease, spraying of Captan or Dithane M-45 or


Dithane Z-78 is effective.
Cigar End/ Tip Rot :Verticillium theobromae and Trachysphaera fructigena

Symptoms

• A black necrosis spread from the perianth into the tip of immature fingers.
The corrugated necrotic tissues become covered with fungus and
resemble the greyish ash of a cigar end.

Control

• The only best control was the removal of the pistil and perianth by hand
as soon as the fingers emerged.

• Placing a polythene bag over the stem before the hands emerged was
effective

Leaf Spot Or Sigatoka Disease

Mycosphaerella muscicola - sexual stage

Cercospora musai
- asexual stage

• Sigatoka is the name of the valley where the disease first attracted attention. A monogrpah has
reviewed information of leaf spot disease. It is a fungal disease.
• Causes severe economic losses. Spreads very fast during rainy season. Attacks mostly leaves.

Epidemiology

• Three components of weather, usually, determine the production and movement of sigatoka inoculum,
rainfall, dew and temperature.
• Conditions favouring mass infection are most common during the rainy season with temperature
above 21° C.
• Other factors, which influence the rate of disease developed and intensity of spotting, include amount
of inoculum on the leaf, age and position of the leaf, plant growth, sun and shade effects on leaf
tissue, etc.
• The major commercial cultivars of banana-Gros Michel and Cavendish group are all highly susceptible
to leaf spot disease.
• All triploid AAA desert bananas of commerce are highly susceptible to sigatoka.

Symptoms

• Spots are concentrated towards the leaf


edges.

• Streaks enlarge and form small spindle or


eye shaped spots with greyish centre and
dark brown or black borders and chlorotic
halo around them.

Eye shaped spots

• Disease first appears as pale yellow or


greenish yellow streaks running parallel to
leaf veins on both the leaf surfaces.

Scorching appearance

• Leaves present a scorched appearance, petioles collapse and leaves hang down from pseudostem. if
severe, bunch maturity is affected.
• Early diseased plant produces poor fruits.

Control

• Removal of infected leaves and burning.


• Proper drainage, spacing, weed management are very

Spraying of Thiophanate methyl 1 g/l, or 1per cent Bordeaux mixture + 2% linseed oil, or Captan 2 g/l are
some practices that can manage the disease.
• Disease first appears as pale yellow or
greenish yellow streaks running parallel to
leaf veins on both the leaf surfaces.

Scorching appearance

• Leaves present a scorched appearance, petioles collapse and leaves hang down from pseudostem. if
severe, bunch maturity is affected.
• Early diseased plant produces poor fruits.

Control

• Removal of infected leaves and burning.


• Proper drainage, spacing, weed management are very
Panama Disease Or Banana Wilt: Fusarium oxysporum f.sp. Cubense

• The first major disease which attacked banana was called Panama disease
from the area where it first became serious.
• Banana wilt is a soil-borne fungal disease and gets entry in the plant body
through roots and wounds caused by nematodes. It is most serious in
poorly drained soil. Disease spreads through infected suckers.

Epidiomology

• Warm soil temperature and bad drainage favour the spread of the disease
and also light soils and high soil moisture. Greater incidence of the
disease has been noticed in poor soil with continuous cropping of banana.

Symptoms

Vascular discoloration

Splitting of
Breaking of petiole Pseudostem

• Dreaded disease of banana and is wide spread in Assam, Bihar,


Karnataka, Kerala, Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh, Maharashtra and West
Bengal where the cultivars of Rasthali group such as Rasbale, Amrutapani,
Malbhog and Mariban are grown.

Bacterial Soft Rot Of Rhizome And Pseudostem : Erwinia spp

• This is a minor bacterial disease, but causing concern in West Bengal.

Symptoms

• It is characterised by a massive soft odorous rot of the centre or a portion


of the rhizome. The rot progresses up the pseudostem destroying the
growing point and causing internal decay often with vascular
discolouration.
• Externally, the symptoms sometimes resemble those of fusariam wilt.
• Yellowing and wilting of the leaves are the characteristic symptoms.

Control

• Soil drenching with bleaching powder was found beneficial. Soil and plant
drenching with bleaching powder at 2 g/l water at an interval of 10-15
days was found effective in controlling the disease.

Top

Bacterial Wilt Or Moko Disease :Pseudomonas solanacearum

Symptoms

• Affected plants show more or less rapid-


wilting and collapse of leaves with a
characteristic discolouration of vascular
bundles, wilting and blackening of
suckers.

Affected sucker

• If pseudostem and rhizomes are cut, a


characteristic bacterial oozing as shiny
drops can be noticed for besides vascular
discolouration.

• In Cavendish varieties, lower leaves


develop a yellowish tinge which soon
spreads to other leaves of the plant,
which subsequently droop and petioles
break at the junction of lamina or
Affected young plant
pseudostem.
• Production of yellow fingers, discoloured vascular bundles of fruit stalks
and internal dry rot of fruits can also be noticed.
• Bacterium is soil born. Spreads through use of diseased suckers for
planting.
• In field disease spreads through irrigation water, implements and insects.
Infection is favoured by root injury.

Control
• Disease can be minimised by exposing soil to sunlight.
• Selection of healthy planting material, eradication of infected plants.
Disinfecting cutting knives and providing better drainage.
• Flower visiting insects are main agents for transmitting the disease and
this is a good reason for following the practice of removing the bud from
the male axis before the bunch matures.

• Herbicides, e.g., 2, 4-D and 2, 4, 5-T, can be used to kill infected plants in
situ and dieldrin sprayed onto a chopped down mat will prevent insects
transmitting the disease to the unaffected plants.


• Initial symptoms appear in older leaves as characteristic yellowing which
ultimately wither, break at petiole and hang down along the pseudostem.
• Young leaves may not dry immediately but are erect and also get affected
later. If severe, entire foliage wilt within 2-3 days
• Splitting of pseudostem , discoloured vascular region in rhizome are also
seen.
• Individual strands appear yellow, in addition red or brown dots and
streaks are also seen.
• Longitudinal splitting of pseudostem, emittance of rotten fish smell when
cut, stunting of plants, wilting and death of suckers are other symptoms
of the disease.

Control

• Basrai is immune and Poovan or Champa is resistant, while Sonkel,


Rasthali Malbhog, Alpan, Morthaman, Kanthali, Sirumalai, Monthan,
Virupakshi are susceptible. Other resistant cultivars include Cavendish
group, Moongil, Peyladen Rajabale, Vamanakeli.
• Selection of healthy suckers, avoiding injury to roots
• The diseased plants should be uprooted and burnt.
• Highly infected soil should not be replanted with banana at least for 3-4
years.
• Use of disease-free planting material and resistant cultivar are
recommended.
• Other measures include use of quicklime near the base of the plant and
soaking with water.
• Application of lime to infested pits, dipping suckers in carbendazim 1 gl/I
before planting followed by bimonthly drenching starting 6 months after
planting are effective management practices

• However, once soil is generally infested, there is no economic method of


reducing the pathogen population to a level where more than two or three
crops of a susceptible cultivar can be obtained.

Spraying of Thiophanate methyl 1 g/l, or 1per cent Bordeaux mixture + 2% linseed oil, or Captan 2 g/l are
some practices that can manage the disease.

Bacterial Soft Rot Of Rhizome And Pseudostem : Erwinia spp

• This is a minor bacterial disease, but causing concern in West Bengal.

Symptoms

• It is characterised by a massive soft odorous rot of the centre or a portion


of the rhizome. The rot progresses up the pseudostem destroying the
growing point and causing internal decay often with vascular
discolouration.
• Externally, the symptoms sometimes resemble those of fusariam wilt.
• Yellowing and wilting of the leaves are the characteristic symptoms.

Control

• Soil drenching with bleaching powder was found beneficial. Soil and plant
drenching with bleaching powder at 2 g/l water at an interval of 10-15
days was found effective in controlling the disease.
Bacterial Wilt Or Moko Disease :Pseudomonas solanacearum

Symptoms

• Affected plants show more or less rapid-


wilting and collapse of leaves with a
characteristic discolouration of vascular
bundles, wilting and blackening of
suckers.

Affected sucker

• If pseudostem and rhizomes are cut, a


characteristic bacterial oozing as shiny
drops can be noticed for besides vascular
discolouration.

• In Cavendish varieties, lower leaves


develop a yellowish tinge which soon
spreads to other leaves of the plant,
which subsequently droop and petioles
break at the junction of lamina or
Affected young plant
pseudostem.
• Production of yellow fingers, discoloured vascular bundles of fruit stalks
and internal dry rot of fruits can also be noticed.
• Bacterium is soil born. Spreads through use of diseased suckers for
planting.
• In field disease spreads through irrigation water, implements and insects.
Infection is favoured by root injury.

Control

• Disease can be minimised by exposing soil to sunlight.


• Selection of healthy planting material, eradication of infected plants.
Disinfecting cutting knives and providing better drainage.
• Flower visiting insects are main agents for transmitting the disease and
this is a good reason for following the practice of removing the bud from
the male axis before the bunch matures.
• Herbicides, e.g., 2, 4-D and 2, 4, 5-T, can be used to kill infected plants in
situ and dieldrin sprayed onto a chopped down mat will prevent insects
transmitting the disease to the unaffected plants.

Bunchy Top- Viral disease

• The disease is covered by domestic quarantine regulations. Losses were


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