Originally Posted by Kalabrian
Very simply, Gabe, what there is special is that it is not a Orinoco. Because this plant is here much before somebody discovered and classified the Orinoco as a species. These are not plants bought on the web or somewhere else, but local variety.
Here banana culture is not like in the Us where everybody searches for cultivar, looks on the web, etc. Here everything is much more simple. People pass the plants one to the other. And from ancient times this cultivar is known. Plants are not labelled because there is not that kind of approach.
If it is similar to the Orinoco, it precedes this latter because the Arabs brought the plant here and in Spain, only then the Spanish could have brought it to South America. Thus it seems very interesting because plants narrate history very often.
Of course the twos are related. But my point is that if it precedes the Orinoco, and if it survived for centuries in a different environment, it could have slight differences which have to be detected. If the Cali Gold, for example, and other species have slight differences than the Orinoco, much more this could be true for our local variety.
@ Kalabrian >> Man, this is awesome. Very nice tradition indeed, I like your Italian style. Just one thing I would like to know... It surely does look like it's well over 4 metres. Are the plants so high in the reality, or are my eyes just joking? How strong are the winds in your locality, because the leaves seem as if they had gone through some tough winds. What is the lowest temperature you have there during the winter? (How much do they usually survive?)
Another thing is, Emanuel, that you are right about that difference...
Let me tell you a story: In the times of Austria-Hungarian monarchy, sometime around 1890, the emperor ordered to collect various palm trees from all over the world and made himself a botanical (greenhouse) garden in southern Hungary (he brought only small plants).
Not many plants survived, when the heating went off in 1914 (no need to explain what happened). But what emerged from the ruins of the old greenhouse, were about 3 metres high Trachycarpus fortunei
trees. They were forced to live their first harsh winter (with the war raging around, why would anyone save trees?), but they managed it.
After 20 years, they still lived, when they were found by a local grower. Not only, that they gave birth to what is now called 'Szeged' Trachycarpus line, but they also adapted to varying conditions of our Central European climate. They no longer dislike the winters so much, they don't have problems with overwatering like Chinese or Indian plants, their hardiness limit has improved by 3 centigrades, making it hardy to almost -17°C without any damage...
And that was just 2 generations. Your people have been passing ths banana probably since the times of Roman Empire. I know, that the fact, that they are not propagated by seeds means, that their evolution is slower, but the naturedoes it's trick anyway...
@ Gabe >> I read somewhere, that the bananan plant's yield is somewhat determined by the first 4 months of pups growth, meaning, whether it stayed on the mother corm or was separated, whether it was damaged (light frosts, too much water, parasites, rotting, too much or too little light...) etc.
I'm curious, have you ever heard such a thing? Is it really so? You must have had lots of fruits, when do the plants have larger yields? Any advice or correction welcome.