Heh - same conditions here in Texas, tho your winters are a bit milder. If you can get your nanners thru the couple of really bad months tho, they'll have a giggling time of it the rest of the year. As to varieties - I'm building up a personal collection here of a variety of nanners - dwarf and regular brazilians, reds, orinocos, cavendishes (well - that is dwarf and super dwarf), not to mention ice-cream, rajapuri, a couple of unidentifieds and soon kru and others. Dry and hot can be dealt with much easier than freezing cold, methinks. Very thick organic compost, for instance, will promote a good crumb structure of the soil. If you have hard clay soil, over-sow some daikon radishes, then when mature, hoe their tops and sow more amongst them - a few crops of that - none of them harvested and all left to rot in the ground will create at least a foot of very rich organic soil in even the worst clay soil. Combine this with compost on top of the soil in the form of sheet composting which will put the benefits of the composting process itself into the soil as well as the final product and you'll have yourself a little parcel of soil that will act like a sponge. Around your trees, I would put soaker-hose rings under the compost layer for each grouping of nanners. This will put the water directly where you need it, and the compost will help keep it from evaporating away. Plant the nanners a little closer together, and consider interplanting companions into this as well. Peanuts for instance would add legume benefits to the soil - be sure to inoculate them with their rhizobia to boost their legume benefits. Inoculating everything in your nanner bed with mycorrhizal fungus would also be a bonus and assist in moisture take-up too. And organizing swales into your nanner beds will help capture rain water and allow it to soak in rather than running off.
Even with all that - the hottest part of the summer will still scorch some and cause some wilting in the heat of the day. Healthy nanners will shrug this off with aplomb tho - so don't fret too much. So long as the soil is sufficiently moist, I wouldn't go crazy watering even more. Morning wilting can be a symptom of dry soil, but afternoon wilting is just a normal reaction to the heat - so always check the soil itself before watering to prevent over-watering. Nanners thrive in hot areas so long as they've got plenty of moisture. Conditioning the soil as I mentioned above will help it retain water longer, as well as thick mulch so your water efficiency should increase - more bang for the drop. I really covet those who get plenty of rain! We're so dry here that I give as much thought to water efficiency as I do to winter protection! More even...
Originally Posted by jmilligan1976
I haven't had a "crop" of anything edible yet but I do have some ornamentals that get fruit.
I will likely aim to try my hand at a few different edible varieties next season.
Maybe someone can also suggest which are the best for the DRY and HOT climate I currently suffer in.???
My naners are really having a tough go the last 2 weeks with temps over 100° every day and zero humidity. Even my small plants in the shade of large trees etc are wilting and scorching a little on the newest leaves.
Thanks for the sites!