Package of Practices of Banana Cultivation
Banana is one of the most important fruit crops in India. It is being cultivated in four lakh hectares with a total annual production of 13.5 million tonnes. The banana plant is a large perennial herb with leaf sheaths that form trunk-like pseudostems.
Plant height, bunch size and various other characteristics depend on the variety. Flower development is initiated from the underground true stem (corm) 9 - 12 months after planting. The inflorescence (flower stalk) grows through the center of the pseudostem. Flowers develop in clusters ("hands") spirally around the main axis.
Soil & Climate; Season and Varieties
- Banana prefers tropical humid lowlands and is grown from the sea level to 1000 to 1200 m above Mean Sea Level. Optimum temperature is 27ºC. Soils with good fertility and assured supply of moisture are best suited.
- Rain fed crop: April-May and Irrigated crop: August-November. Adjust the time of planting so as to avoid high temperature, heavy rains and drought at the time of emergence of bunches (7-8 months after planting).
- Dwarf Cavendish, Robusta, Rasthali, Poovan, Red Banana, Ney Poovan, Virupakshi, Pachanadan, Monthan, Karpuravalli, Safed Velchi Musa, Grand Naine,, etc.
Preparation of land; Selection of suckers, Spacing &Planting
- Prepare the field by ploughing or digging and dig pits size of 45 x 45 x 45 cm for planting.
- Disease free tissue cultured suckers are planted. For some varieties pseudostem rhizomes are also selected from disease free mother trees to plant. Pseudostem Rhizomes to a length of 15-20 cm from corm and remove old roots. The rhizomes are to be smeared with cow dung solution and ash and dried in the sun for about 3-4 days and stored in shade up to 15 days before planting.
- The common planting practice is plant to plant 6 feet and row to row 7 feet and 7 ft x 7 ft is ideal for better yields.
- Plant suckers upright in the centre of pits with 5 cm pseudostem remaining above soil level. Press soil around the sucker to avoid hollow air spaces.
- Farm yard manure 10 – 30 kg/ pit + Annapurna 1 to 2 kg/ pit along + Safe Root 20 g/ pit + Ecohume Granules - G @ 50 g/ pit + DAP @ 50 g/pit at the time of planting.
- Apply the following fertilizers (Major, Secondary and Micronutrients) at an interval of 45 days once from planting to bunch development. NPK – 450:350:500g/plant ; Magnesium Sulphate – 150g/plant; Aries Agromin Micronutrient fertiliser - 120g/plant; Calcium Nitrate 500 gm
- Plant crop followed by two to three ratoon crops gives maximum yield. Two suckers per clump should be retained for rationing crop.
- Apply the fertilizer 45-75 cm around the plant in 5 to 7 equal split doses. Irrigate the water immediately after manuring.
Irrigation and Weed control:
- During summer months, irrigate once in three days.
- Ensure good drainage and prevent waterlogging.
- Number of irrigations per crop may be given depending upon soil conditions.
- During early stages, complete control of weeds could be obtained by raising cowpea in the interspaces
- Pre -emergence application of Goal [oxyfluorfen] 100 gm per acre
- Post emergence weedicides Paralac [paraquat dichloride] 6 gm per litre of water or Roundup [glyphosate 41 %] 12- 15 mL/L + urea 5 gm/L of water without making spray mix on banana leaves or saplings.
- Remove side suckers produced till the emergence of bunch. Retain one or two suckers produced after the emergence of bunch.
- Cucumber and amaranth can be cultivated profitably with banana raised in September-October without affecting the bunch weight.
Tissue culture offers a rapid method of multiplication of quality, uniform, pest and disease free production of planting materials in large quantities in banana. The productivity of banana can be increased by cultivation of tissue culture plants.
Method of planting:
- Prepare pits 15 days in advance of planting.
- Fill the pits with topsoil and FYM 10 kg per plant per pit.
- Remove the polythene cover completely before planting without damaging the roots.
Plant the tissue culture plants on the top of the pit at ground level.
- Banana pseudostem weevil:
Adult female weevil punctures and inserts eggs into the pseudostem. Grubs emerging out feed extensively on the pseudostem and thereby the entire plant collapses.
- Field sanitation
- Remove affected plants & by burning
- Apply Jashn (Quinalphos) 2 mL/L or Predator (chlorpyrifos) 3 mL/L
These act as vectors for the transmission of the dreadful bunchy top disease in banana.
- Spray of Imidastar [ imidacloprid]5 mL/L will clean off aphids damage.
2. Apply 25 g Furadon [Carbofuran 3G] 20 days after planting around the rhizomes in soil and 50 gm whenever the Aphids infestation is observed.
3. Spindle leaf miner:
- Spray Trifos [Triazhophos ] 2 mL/L on the spindle for controlling the leaf miner.
Major species are burrowing nematode, root knot nematode, root lesion nematode and cyst nematode. In case of severe infestation there will be high reduction in the number of leaves, total bunch weight and the number of fruits.
Treatment for nematode infested crops
- Drenching for individual plants 500-1000 mL of following mixtures at 15 days interval
- First application: Marshal 3 mL/L + Ecohume 3 mL/L + Econeem plus 1 % 2 mL/L of water
- Second application: Trifos 3 mL/L + Gibrax Phytozyme 3 mL/L + Neemark 1 % 2 mL/L of water
- Peel the rhizomes and drench Safe Root @ 15 – 20 g in one litre of water at the rate of 1 to 2 litres per plant
- Apply neem cake @ 250 to 500 g/plant and 25 g Furadon [Carbofuran 3G] per plant at the time of the planting.
- When above treatment are given around the base of plants, there should be sufficient soil moisture; otherwise, the plants should be watered after application.
- Bunchy top disease:
This is a virus disease transmitted by aphids.
- Use insecticidal treatments recommended for insect vector control.
- Eradicate disease affected plants.
- Use disease free suckers for planting.
- Panama wilt disease.
Fungal pathogen causes Panama wilt disease.
- Dip suckers of susceptible varieties in solution of Bengard (carbendazim) 2 g/litre + Plantomycin5 g/litre of water for 15 – 20 minutes, to prevent spread of the disease and the above solution can also be drenched.
- Remove and destroy affected clumps along with corms.
- Apply lime @ 1 kg/pit and allow to weather.
Varieties such as Robusta and Nendran are resistant to the disease.
- Sigatoka leaf spot:
Fungal pathogen causes Sigatoka leaf spot.
- Cut and burn all severely affected leaves.
- Spray 1% Bordeaux mixture soon after the appearance of the initial symptoms of the disease.
- Spray Bengard (carbendazim) 2 g/litre or Phytoalexin 4 ml/litre + Blitox 2 gm/L OR Infectious chlorosis (Cucumber mosaic virus disease):
The disease is noticed in varieties such as Nendran, Grand naine and Yelakki. Loss of leaf colour in patches; appearance of parallel chlorotic streaks on the younger leaves, giving a striped appearance on the leaves.
Control:- This is a virus disease transmitted by aphids.
- Use disease free suckers for planting.
- Eradicate disease affected plants.
- Use insecticides recommended for insect vector control.
- Avoid growing leguminous and cucurbitaceous vegetables as intercrop in banana.
1st Spray – 35 to 45 day after planting
Kranti 2.0 mL/L + Bengard (carbendazim) 2 g/litre or Cuprina (Copper oxychloride) 2 g/ L + Plantomycin – 0.5 g/L + Raccolto Spraywell – 0.5 mL/L.
2nd Spray – 70 to 80 days after plantation
Optimus 2.5 mL/L + ALSACH NPK 19 :19 :19 – 5 g/L+ Dhanuka Zerox 0.25 mL/L + Raccolto Spraywell– 0.5 mL/L.
3rd Spray – During flowering stage
Gibrax Phytozyme – 3 mL/L + Boron 20 1 gm/L+ ALSACH Calcium Nitrate 3 gm/L+ Raccolto Spraywell– 0.5 mL/L.
4th Spray – During fingers development stage
1st Spray for fingers
Sambrama 0.5 gm/L + 20 % Boron AL SACH- M6 – 1 g/L + Saaf 2 gm/L+ Raccolto Spraywell– 0.5 mL/L.
2nd Spray for fingers (15days after 1st spray)
Ahaar – 3 mL/L + ALSACH (N-13, K-45) – 3-5 g/L + Bengard (carbendazim) – 2 g/L + Raccolto Spraywell– 0.5 mL/L.
K SANJEEVA REDDY,
Senior Agronomist, BigHaat.
Disclaimer: The performance of the product (s) is subject to usage as per manufacturer guidelines. Read enclosed leaflet of the product(s) carefully before use. The use of this product(s)/ information is at the discretion of user.
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