Banana farming profit in India | banana cultivation practices

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Globally India rank's first in banana production by producing about 14 million metric tonnes annually. In India bananas are grown in Maharashtra, Tamilnadu, Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh, Gujarat and Assam.  

Banana Tree Information

Banana tree usually takes 9-10 months to grow with lots of banana fruits. 

A banana is an elongated, edible fruit. Bananas come from two wild species - Musa acuminata and Musa balbisiana. The scientific name of most cultivated Bananas are Musa acuminata, Musa balbisiana, and Musa x paradisiaca. 

Musa species are native to tropical Indomalaya and Australia   

Price of one banana plant is Rs 15

The flowers are actually protected by some covering. They are dark red to maroon in colour the commercially cultivated edible bananas are parthenocarpy verities therefore they are seadius. The ovaries of the fruits develop into the edible pulp without fertilization. There are more than 1000 types of banana in the world. Cavendish is the most common variety.

banana flower

Banana flower

 

The flowers are actually protected by some covering. They are dark red to maroon in colour the commercially cultivated edible bananas are parthenocarpy verities therefore they are seadius. The ovaries of the fruits develop into the edible pulp without fertilization. There are more than 1000 types of banana in the world. Cavendish is the most common variety.



 Banana Cultivation FAQ  

Banana crop is a tropical fruit that can grow in  volcanic soil. Since India has tropical climate most of the year it can grow almost all year around.



Which type of climate is required for banana cultivation?

Banana grows at an altitude of one thousand two hundred meters from sea level in a warm and humid climate 20 to 35 degree Celsius is the most favourable temperature range along with the high level of humidity for banana farming in India. They takes longer time to mature in cooler climate an average annual rainfall of one thousand seven hundred mm distributed evenly through out the year.



What is the suitable season for banana cultivation?

The temperature at the time of banana cultivation must be moderate neither too high nor too low. The planting schedule depends on :

1. Type of land

2. Cultivation practice being followed

3. Duration of the cultivar ( long or short )

In India it is mostly grown in February or June month. According to farmers they don't need much water in the month of June due to rainy season. And if someone is having sufficient water then they use to plant it in Feb. 



Which type of soil is required in Banana Cultivation?

For successful banana plantation fertile soil with rich organic content is necessary since it is a heavy feeder in addition they have a restricted root zone therefore drainage and depth of the soil are two important factors that must be consider.

In addition to having a good drainage capacity the soil must be able to retain the moisture and have a PH of 6.5 to 7.5 the nitrogen content of the soil must high along with adequate levels of potassium phosphorous.

Black loamy soils of Maharashtra clay heavy soil along the Kaveri deltoid region the alluvial soil of the gangaotic canes sandy loam of Kerala and red natured soil in the hilly region of Kerala are the idle for banana plantation. needless to say these areas are well-known for banana cultivation. 



Idle pH for Banana Farming?

Alkaline or acidic soils are not good for banana farming. A neutral pH of 6.5 to 7.5 must be maintained for banana crop. 



How much water is required for banana cultivation?

For the entire lifecycles of banana it needs nine hundred to one thousand mm of water. This is generally met through rainfall and what ever extra is needed provided through irrigation. It is important to maintain the moisture level, also drain out the excess water from the root zone.

This is important from the point of view of growth and productivity of banana tree. Irrigation is done once a week when the climate is cool and once in every three days under hot conditions. 

Drip irrigation, trench irrigation are some of the common irrigation systems followed for cultivation of banana each of them have their own merits and demerits. However, the most economic and  popular one is drip irrigation this is because they ensure the water being dispensed at the root zone.



Crop Rotation with Banana    

Banana is a heavy feeder therefore having a long term banana plantation might not be a very  beneficial form of farming at all. Banana's are hence rotated with crops like sugarcane, parry, pulses, vegetables etc this helps soil to regain the fertility ensure vitality to some extend weed control. The period of crop rotation various on two - three years on an average 



Intercropping in Banana Farming in India

Intercropping is the most commonly followed practice in banana cultivation. While it ensures the health of the soil it also provides substantial income for the farmers. In coastal areas like Karnataka and Kerala banana is intercrop with coconut. Ginger, pepper, elephant foot yam are other crops that are cultivated along with banana. When choosing the intercrop farmer should consider the growth of banana plants. 



Planting material for Banana Cultivation

Farmers most commonly use sucker as the planting material some of them also practice tissue culture banana cultivation using sedans develop fruit tissue culture. Rhizomes and peepers are the other planting materials used for banana cultivation. There are two types of sucker sword sucker and water sucker.

Water Sucker- A sucker next to but only superficially attached to mother rhizomes with broad leaves at an early stage. Water sucker produce inferior fruit ( not healthy banana clump) and are therefore not recommended. 

however; fruits produced through water sucker are often fade in quality and hence not used in commercial farming. Sword suckers are attached to the mother rhizome superficially and have broad leave right from early stages sucker used  propagation must weight 450 to 700 gram and must have a well develop rhizome. To maintain a disease free healthy and high yielding banana plantation some farmers also uses the tissue culture banana plants. 



  Banana Varieties

There are more than one thousand types of bananas that are cultivated. Cavendish is the most common yield.  

  • Cavendish banana
  • Pisang Raja
  • Red banana 
  • Lady finger banana
  • Blue java banana
  • Burro banana
  • Manzano banana
  • Plantain



Land Preparation for Banana Cultivation

The land is stilled and plot so is to break down the soil clots, stones, rocks and other must be remove the land must be fine. Farmers practice high density banana cultivation varying up to 2000 plants can be accommodated in one acre. 



Planting of Banana Crop 

The most common method of followed is split planting. Deep planting in banana cultivation must be avoided. The fields are irrigated 3-4 days before planting and immediately after planting along the kaveri deltoid region trench planting is practice while furrow planting is done in annual planting system in Maharashtra and Gujarat. 



Diseases and Plant Protection    

Panama wilt- It is caused by the soil bournenursery fungi Fusarium oxysporum. 

Symptoms - Leaves become yellow, Pseudostem splits and breaks.

Control Measures - Eradication of the infected plants. Growing resistant varities like Dwarf Cavendish. Soil drenching with Vapam @ 0.85% and mercuric chloride @ 3000 PPM in nursery. 

Bunchy Top - It is caused by the virus, which is transmitted by an aphid Pentalonia nigroneruosa. 

Symptoms - Infected plants have short, narrow, erect leaves with short petiole. Plants remain slanted. 

Control Measures - Infected plants should be uprooted and burnt. Spraying of 2-4 D to control weeds.  

Root stock weevil - Damaging stage is adult and grub 

Symptoms of damage - Grub bores into stem which is affected by fungi or bacteria.

Control measures - Use healthy suckers rhizomes. 

Before planting treat the pit with 0.65% Lindane 60-80 gram per pit. Soak the sucker in 0.1% Lindane solution, spray 0.05% endosulfan. 




Harvesting and Banana Production

Banana usually takes to reach at harvesting level in around ten months. Irrigation in banana crop is stopped about a week or so before harvesting this will help soil to dry. While the banana bunches are cut from the fields other operations like cutting the hands, applications of fungicides etc must be carried out in the shade. The bunch must be 75 % dry and free from disease, green in colour. They are packed in gunny bags and shipped to the appropriate market. 

Banana cultivation is very profitable business if planned well. One can easily produce 25 tonnes of banana in one acre land sometimes the yield can be higher. 



Banana Paper

Banana fibre is used in the production of banana paper. The paper is made from two different parts: the bark of the banana plant, mainly used for artistic purposes, or from the fibres of the stem and non usable fruits. The paper is either hand made or by industrial process. 

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