Originally Posted by PR-Giants
I plant variegated bananas with rhizomes that have a tendency to rot in what I refer to as a French Drain.
The rocks are just around the rhizome and are only there to protect the rhizome against excess water with low aeration. I'm not concerned about the roots. Many people complain about root rot but I've never seen it as a major problem. If any roots rot they'll only rot back as far as where the substrate has adequate aeration and then will start to regrow.
Being very familiar with Florida weather I know there is enough rain to grow in rock most of the time but is your island location the same? Do you have to supplement with irrigation? Here on the North Carolina coast we get good rain but not regular so have to irrigate.
The best AeAe grow I ever had was on a slope in pure sand but planted on an old rotted down brush pile. Definite great drainage. The mother plant grew huge and produced 3 large pups that summer with no extra irrigation. So I can back you up on the good drainage being the key to sensitive bananas.