damethod
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Dwarf Cavender Banana in a pot...UPDATE 2009..NOW FLOWERING!

I purchased a dwarf cavender banana tree at a local Home Depot today. I have no experience with it, but decided to give it a try. I bought a pot about 2.5 times larger than the one it is in now. I figure that will be big enough since it says on the tag that it grows to 3ft. tall.

However, I have seen everywhere online that they grow to 6-8ft tall. Can this tree do well in a plastic pot sized 14/35? What kind of fertilizer should I use? ..how often?..and most importantly...when can I expect fruit? :D
Last edited by damethod on Wed Jan 14, 2009 4:58 pm, edited 1 time in total.

damethod
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well, i planted it into the ground. The pot seemed too small, so I decided to make room for it in the yard. :D

opabinia51
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Neat! It will be interesting to see if you get any fruit. Try searching online for some information on your plant.
Feed the soil, not the plants.

damethod
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Hopefully I do. I'm a bit discouraged though after finding a "Musa" banana tree at the local Home Depot. It mentioned on the tag that it must be grown in a greenhouse in order to produce fruit. :(

On a seperate note...when researching the dwarf tree...I got the impression that you could not find a Musa anymore. It is supposed to taste better than cavender.

doccat5
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I read this with great interest. I have a banana tree that I got from a seed swap with some fellow gardeners on another site. This is the big one, she wasn't sure on the variety. But it's the bigger one and will get at least 6 ft tall.
We are both pushing the zone envelope with these since neither of us have greenhouses, but she leaves her in the pot and brings it in the fall once it goes dormant and stores it laying on it's side in an unheated garage. So I figured I'd give it a go.

I've started watering it again and it's produced a new leaf, I had it on my patio and the leaves got a bit "wind blown", so I'm looking at another sheltered area where it should do better.

What fun, my 4 year old granddaughter is fascinated, don't know if we can get fruit, but it's going to be interesting to see what happens with this thing.
doccat5

I'd rather be gardening!

damethod
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Here is some interesting and encouraging(since Miami pretty much IS a big greenhouse) information on bananas.

https://www.hort.purdue.edu/newcrop/morton/banana.html

I should have known this already, but there are a boat load of different types of bananas! After reading this info, I'm going to see if that musa banana plant is still there. If it is, I'll put that one in a big pot and see what happens. :D

I'll have pics on here soon

opabinia51
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I would think that florida would be the perfect climate for bananas, it's very similar to Costa Rica in Climate. (Of course, I've spent a grand total of ten days in Florida and a similar amount in Costa Rica, I have seen Bananas growing in Costa Rica but, not Fla.) Interesting, What are you winters like?
Feed the soil, not the plants.

damethod
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Although last year got pretty cold...we usually don't have a winter. We'll get one week of cold weather in december and then maybe another week or two in January or February.

What convinced me to give it a try is the incredible amount of humidity that we always have. I go to Vegas during the summer at least once a year. Even though it is over 100 degrees, it doesn't feel as hot as 90 degree weather here.

I'm heading to the H.D. in a few minutes. I'm crossing my fingers that someone hasn't snatched up the banana plant yet. It's only $5, so it is definitlely worth a try.

Now....I only need two more plants. Papaya and Hass Avocado.

damethod
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Here are pics of the banana plants(dwarf cavender and musa) and the red lady papaya tree I bought.

[url=https://i19.photobucket.com/albums/b158/damethod/dwarfcavenderbanana2.jpg][img]https://i19.photobucket.com/albums/b158/damethod/th_dwarfcavenderbanana2.jpg[/img][/url]
[url=https://i19.photobucket.com/albums/b158/damethod/musabanana.jpg][img]https://i19.photobucket.com/albums/b158/damethod/th_musabanana.jpg[/img][/url]
[url=https://i19.photobucket.com/albums/b158/damethod/redladypapaya.jpg][img]https://i19.photobucket.com/albums/b158/damethod/th_redladypapaya.jpg[/img][/url]

damethod
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UPDATE: NOT EVEN 8 MONTHS LATER...FRUIT!! GLORIOUS FRUIT!!

LOL I guess you can tell I'm a bit excited. Here are pics of the flower and fruit emerging. I will follow up with more pics when all the hands are out and beginning to ripen.

After posting the original post in this thread, I noticed more and more banana trees being grown in people's backyards. They are effortless to grow here in South Florida. :D

Here is a picture of the tree back around Halloween. You can see the two "pups" growing at each side.
[img]https://i19.photobucket.com/albums/b158/damethod/DwarfCavendishBanana103008.jpg[/img]

This is the flower emerging from the main stem
[img]https://i19.photobucket.com/albums/b158/damethod/dwarfcavendishbananaflowers001.jpg[/img]

Other side of the flower. You can see the little bananas coming out.
[img]https://i19.photobucket.com/albums/b158/damethod/dwarfcavendishbananaflowers002.jpg[/img]

damethod
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Just 4 days later.. Look at all those bananas!

[img]https://i19.photobucket.com/albums/b158/damethod/dwarfcavendishbananaflowers2002.jpg[/img]

cynthia_h
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Wow! That's great!

I had no idea that bananas could grow in Florida. Nobody in Tampa grew them when I was in high school; it was all citrus, azalea, etc.

Great photos; nice detail.

Cynthia H.
Sunset Zone 17, USDA Zone 9

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Sienna Dawn
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Wow, wow, wowweee! How cool is that!?!
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webmaster
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That's way cool. 8)

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Kisal
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That is just amazing to me! Absolutely amazing! Congratulations! :D

damethod
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Update on "musa" banana plant in pott

In my excitement I forgot to update the other banana plant that I purchased out of impulse(small one picture in pott). It turned out that it was not a fruiting banana tree at all! :x I went ahead and dug it up and replaced it with another banana tree. An apple banana, also known as manzano, which happens to be my favorite. I purchased it online and planted it in the pott, then into the ground. Here is a pic of it:

[img]https://i19.photobucket.com/albums/b158/damethod/mailordertreesandmangoflowers001.jpg[/img]

It's actually a bit larger now since this pic was taken about a month ago.

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hendi_alex
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I bought two dwarf bananas last year, to try here in S.C. Don't remember the variety but was an inexpenive type that gets up to about 6 feet tall and has four inch bananas. The plants came last spring, tiny things in four inch pots. They have really thrived and are now over three feet tall and growing well in my green house, can't wait until this summers burst of growth. These are doing so well I've ordered a second typle from Raintreenursery.com. The banana is related to Dwarf Cavendish banana or 'Mahoi' but grows double and sometimes triple clumps of bananas. Gets about 7' tall in a large pot.

Here is one of those eight inch plants that was in a three or four inch pot last spring. It is now over three feet tall after one season and its roots are filling this aproximate three gallon container.

[img]https://farm4.static.flickr.com/3370/3234223842_127acffd2e.jpg[/img]

Here is the second plant with similar results. Have been very happy how well they have continued to grow through the winter.

[img]https://farm4.static.flickr.com/3405/3234223612_eebede515d.jpg[/img]
Eclectic gardening style, drawing from 45 years of interest and experience. Mostly plant in raised beds and containers primarily using intensive gardening techniques.
Alex

damethod
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Very nice! Bananas seem almost effortless to grow. Give them warmth, water, and some fertilizer and they will grow quickly and produce within a year! The only real work is not letting too many banana plants grow at once since they produce new plants from rhizomes underground.

Todays updated pic of dwarf cavendish bananas:

[img]https://i19.photobucket.com/albums/b158/damethod/DCbananas001.jpg[/img]

[img]https://i19.photobucket.com/albums/b158/damethod/DCbananas002.jpg[/img]


It looks like I'll have about 100 from this one plant!

spoiltmom
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Do these taste like regular bananas?

I'm very interested now.

damethod
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I should have an answer for you before April. I will update.

rhinosaur
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Hey, very cool. You've got bananas!

I remember my grandparents had a banana tree in their yard in Panama City when I was a kid. I think it produced fruit but I can't remember eating it. Maybe it wasn't the kind of banana that's good to eat.

damethod
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Maybe it was a plantain or cooking banana. There are well over 50 different types of edible bananas. Some are only used for cooking while others are eaten fresh. I currently have 3 that are meant to be eaten fresh and would like to add a plantain plant if I can get one.

spoiltmom
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So have you tried any of them yet? I'm still curious about how they taste. I'm seriously thinking about buying some.

damethod
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They are plumping up now, but still not ready to be picked. It looks like I'll be tasting them around early May.

I actually cut off the flower head about a week ago and they immediately starting swelling. I read that cutting off the flower head and inedible male flowers speeds the developement of the fruit. Let's see.

A woman who leaves her child at my Mother's daycare has a Dwarf Cav as well. She sent me some of her fruit to try and they were exactly like grocery bananas, just smaller. I'm hopeful that I will have the same results.

damethod
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There are sooo many varieties of bananas. There are 80 different types at the Fruit & Spice Park in Homestead, FL alone. My personal favorite are manzano or manzanilla bananas. Lady fingers are also delicious, but tiny. I've heard Jamaican Reds are delicious, but have not tried them... If you are in zone 9 or higher, it's worth a shot. :wink:

Here are some good sites for research, and/or to purchase your plants.

Research:
https://www.hort.purdue.edu/newcrop/morton/banana.html

https://edis.ifas.ufl.edu/MG040

https://www.crfg.org/pubs/ff/banana.html

Web site with info AND offers banana trees for sale:

https://www.going-bananas.com/

I edited the post to fix a spelling error and to remove a link to a site that I had a bad experience with and did not want to recommend.
Last edited by damethod on Mon Apr 06, 2009 5:29 pm, edited 3 times in total.

damethod
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UPDATE: I am now eating delicious bananas! My camera is not working properly, so I can't take pics...but, I have given away 2 dozen bananas, frozen a dozen, and still have well over 50 bananas!

I left to Vegas for a week on the 29th of May...when I came back, I found the banana bunch had broken free from the mother plant and fallen on the ground! I picked up the bunch(about 100 lbs!) and hung them for 2 days. I then cut the individual hands, washed them thoroughly, and then packed them in boxes lined with plastic. 2 days later I had ripe bananas!

They do indeed taste like grocery store bananas...but a tiny bit sweeter. DELICIOUS!

So, to recap... Dwarf Cavendish Banana = 12-13 months from planting to harvest.

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applestar
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Wow! That is SO COOL! :clap:
Sitting here, 60ºF this mid-June morning, I can't see me growing one.
Maybe someday, if I'm extra good, Santa will bring me a heated greenhouse... O:)

Thanks for sharing your experience! :D

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Earl K
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Hmmm,Now im thinking about a banana tree.I love me some nanners :D
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spoiltmom
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I must get one of these now. Thanks for keep us updated!

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