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Cold Hardy Bananas This forum is dedicated to the discussion of bananas that are able to grow and thrive in cold areas. You'll find lots of tips and discussions about keeping your bananas over the winter.


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Old 09-28-2018, 09:56 AM   #1 (permalink)
 
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Default How to breed (seedless) Bananas for Temperate climates

This post is about how to breed seedless bananas for temperate climates, a rough outline idea.

Select a cold-hardy banana (such as Musa basjoo or Darjeeling) and then select another "edible" (good tasting, but seeded) banana which is very early ripening (Dwarf Cavendish or Orinoco).
(Helen's hybrid might be a good one to try further hybridizing too)

Treat the apical bud with either Colchicine or Oryzalin to double the chromosome number, obtaining a tetraploid.


"Tetraploid plants were induced successfully from diploid bananas Musa acuminata ‘Kluai Leb Mu Nang’ and ‘Kluai Sa’ (2n = 2x = 22) with in vitro oryzalin treatment. Calluses from in vitro-grown shoot tips of both cultivars were treated with oryzalin at concentrations of 1.5 or 3 mg l−1 for 24, 48 and 72 h, respectively. The oryzalin treatments produced tetraploids at a frequency of 15.6% in ‘Kluai Leb Mu Nang’ and 16.7% in ‘Kluai Sa’ as detected by flow cytometry. Chromosome counting showed that the tetraploid plant chromosome number was (2n = 4x = 44). The selected tetraploid plants were transplanted in the field and variations in the morphological characteristic of leaf shape and fruit bunch compared to normal diploid plants were found under the same growing condition even after 3 years of cultivation."

In vitro induction of tetraploid plants from callus cultures of diploid bananas (Musa acuminata , AA group), Kluai Leb Mu Nang, Kluai Sa


Here's another relevant article as well: Effectiveness of Colchicine and Oryzalin at Inducing Polyploidy in Watsonia lepida N.E. Brown


When a normal diploid is bred with a tetraploid, the result is a seedless triploid variety.


"Most bananas purchased at your local supermarket came from sterile triploid hybrids."
https://www2.palomar.edu/users/warmstrong/hybrids1.htm


I have another idea also.
Take a regular seedless banana (3n), double its chromosome set number to 6 (hexaploid), then breed it with another banana.
Once the chromosome set number has been doubled from 3 to 6 it should then produce seed because 6 is an even number (and the chromosomes can be evenly split during meosis).
Hybridizing a 6n (hexaploid) with a seeded 2n (diploid) should give a 4n (tetraploid) banana (also seeded), which could then in turn be hybridized again with a 2n seeded banana to give a seedless 3n triploid.
I believe it could also be possible to use seedless (3n) banana pollen to fertilize a hexaploid (6n) flower, also resulting in tetraploid (4n). I'm not exactly sure about bananas but this type of phenomena can work in citrus. There are some issues with trying to breed triploids but in general some normal (1n) haploid gametes are able to form from the meosis of triploids, and the majority of offspring able to form from triploids will be the same as if they came from a normal diploid parent (though the rate of fertility is normally substantially lower). Basically 3 is unable to split evenly into two, so some 1n gametes are able to escape from the division intact. Maybe someone with more knowledge than I will be able to give some input about whether seedless bananas have fertile pollen.


Edit: A quick search reveals triploid bananas can produce fertile pollen.

"Pollen viability was examined by recording the number of viable as well as non-viable microspores in anthers just before anthesis, as it could be an efficient and rapid indicator of female fertility. It was thought that competency in meiotic restitution in microspores could indicate similar competency in megaspores. Pollen fertility was compared among seeded diploids and edible triploids of Musa and correlated with ovule fertility. Viability was examined using the Alexander's pollen stain procedure. The seeded diploid species M. acuminata, M. balbisiana, and M. ornata had 3 times more viable pollen than the edible tetraploids (AAAB). M. balbisiana and M. ornata had significantly more viable pollen than M. acuminata. The tetraploids contained 3 times more viable pollen than the edible triploids AAA […] The AAA triploid Gros Michel had the highest percentage of viable pollen at 13% […] "

Pollen fertility in Musa : Viability in cultivars grown in Southern Australia, J. A. Fortescue, D. W. Turner, Australian Journal of Agricultural Research, January 2004
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Old 09-28-2018, 11:21 AM   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: How to breed (seedless) Bananas for Temperate climates

Namwa and Pisang Ceylon work well in our climate ... have you tried growing them?
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Old 09-28-2018, 02:43 PM   #3 (permalink)
 
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Default Re: How to breed (seedless) Bananas for Temperate climates

It would be great to have a banana as cold hardy as Basjoo and as tasty as Gros Michel that'll go from corm to ripe bananas in 6 months... It would also be great to be rich and good looking, but I didn't get that wish, either.
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Varieties I supposedly bought: Manzano, Cavendish, Blue Java, Sweetheart, and Gros Michel.
What it seems I actually have: Brazilian, Cavendish, Namwah, Dwarf Red, Gros Michel, Pisang Ceylon, Veinte Cohol and SH 3640, and American Goldfinger. FHIA 1, Paggi and FHIA 17... Always room for one more.
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Old 09-28-2018, 09:18 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: How to breed (seedless) Bananas for Temperate climates

None of the things you mention are out of reach.
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Old 09-29-2018, 11:32 AM   #5 (permalink)
 
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Default Re: How to breed (seedless) Bananas for Temperate climates

There may be another way of obtaining a tetraploid banana without Colchocine or Oryzalin.

"Crossing of a triploid banana with a diploid variety generates diploid, triploid, tetraploid, aneuploid and hyperploid progeny"

I believe this may be because sometimes an unreduced gamete escapes, and in the case of triploids, an unreduced gamete (still with all 3 sets of chromosomes) is much more likely to escape meoisis intact and be viable than a triploid that underwent chromosomal division.
So an unreduced 3n gamete from pollen + a normal haploid gamete from the female parent = a tetraploid offspring 4n

https://www.sciencedirect.com/scienc...5000463#bbib22

I know the same thing can occur in citrus but it's usually only somewhere around 1 out of 25 offspring.

Another article seems to suggest with bananas it may be as high as half:
"On the assumption that Cavendish cultivars have low fertility, the Banana and Plantain Breeding Program at the Honduran Foundation for Agricultural Research (FHIA), starting in 2002, pollinated 20,000 bunches, approximately 2 million fingers, of the Cavendish cultivars ‘Grand Naine’ and ‘Williams’ with pollen from 10 Cavendish cultivars for the development of Cavendish tetraploids. As a result, 200 seeds with 40 viable embryos were obtained, from which 20 tetraploid hybrids were developed. These results confirmed the assumption that Cavendish cultivars have low fertility, which allows their use in conventional breeding methods to create new progenies. The selected tetraploid progenies were crossed with improved FHIA diploids for the development of second generation triploid hybrids."
http://www.fhia.org.hn/dowloads/bana...ish_banana.pdf

(much of this is because seeds that would have had problematic chromsomal abnormalities don't form in the first place)

The article goes on to say that it is even possible to use triploid varieties as the female parent, but the seed count tends to be only just 1 or 2 seeds per bunch of bananas, and only an exceedingly tiny amount in Cavendish bananas (1 seed per 100 bunches of bananas).
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Old 09-29-2018, 02:13 PM   #6 (permalink)
 
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Default Re: How to breed (seedless) Bananas for Temperate climates

I was thinking about trying to breed Helen's hybrid with Viente Cohol, and then backcross with Helen's hybrid again.
(Viente Cohol is very early ripening but not at all cold hardy)

or Sikkimensis x Raja Puri and then cross with dwarf Orinoco
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Old 09-30-2018, 10:43 AM   #7 (permalink)
 
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Default Re: How to breed (seedless) Bananas for Temperate climates

Quote:
Originally Posted by SoCal2warm View Post
This post is about how to breed seedless bananas for temperate climates, a rough outline idea.

Select a cold-hardy banana (such as Musa basjoo or Darjeeling) and then select another "edible" (good tasting, but seeded) banana which is very early ripening (Dwarf Cavendish or Orinoco).
(Helen's hybrid might be a good one to try further hybridizing too)

Treat the apical bud with either Colchicine or Oryzalin to double the chromosome number, obtaining a tetraploid.


"Tetraploid plants were induced successfully from diploid bananas Musa acuminata ‘Kluai Leb Mu Nang’ and ‘Kluai Sa’ (2n = 2x = 22) with in vitro oryzalin treatment. Calluses from in vitro-grown shoot tips of both cultivars were treated with oryzalin at concentrations of 1.5 or 3 mg l−1 for 24, 48 and 72 h, respectively. The oryzalin treatments produced tetraploids at a frequency of 15.6% in ‘Kluai Leb Mu Nang’ and 16.7% in ‘Kluai Sa’ as detected by flow cytometry. Chromosome counting showed that the tetraploid plant chromosome number was (2n = 4x = 44). The selected tetraploid plants were transplanted in the field and variations in the morphological characteristic of leaf shape and fruit bunch compared to normal diploid plants were found under the same growing condition even after 3 years of cultivation."

In vitro induction of tetraploid plants from callus cultures of diploid bananas (Musa acuminata , AA group), Kluai Leb Mu Nang, Kluai Sa


Here's another relevant article as well: Effectiveness of Colchicine and Oryzalin at Inducing Polyploidy in Watsonia lepida N.E. Brown


When a normal diploid is bred with a tetraploid, the result is a seedless triploid variety.


"Most bananas purchased at your local supermarket came from sterile triploid hybrids."
https://www2.palomar.edu/users/warmstrong/hybrids1.htm


I have another idea also.
Take a regular seedless banana (3n), double its chromosome set number to 6 (hexaploid), then breed it with another banana.
Once the chromosome set number has been doubled from 3 to 6 it should then produce seed because 6 is an even number (and the chromosomes can be evenly split during meosis).
Hybridizing a 6n (hexaploid) with a seeded 2n (diploid) should give a 4n (tetraploid) banana (also seeded), which could then in turn be hybridized again with a 2n seeded banana to give a seedless 3n triploid.
I believe it could also be possible to use seedless (3n) banana pollen to fertilize a hexaploid (6n) flower, also resulting in tetraploid (4n). I'm not exactly sure about bananas but this type of phenomena can work in citrus. There are some issues with trying to breed triploids but in general some normal (1n) haploid gametes are able to form from the meosis of triploids, and the majority of offspring able to form from triploids will be the same as if they came from a normal diploid parent (though the rate of fertility is normally substantially lower). Basically 3 is unable to split evenly into two, so some 1n gametes are able to escape from the division intact. Maybe someone with more knowledge than I will be able to give some input about whether seedless bananas have fertile pollen.


Edit: A quick search reveals triploid bananas can produce fertile pollen.

"Pollen viability was examined by recording the number of viable as well as non-viable microspores in anthers just before anthesis, as it could be an efficient and rapid indicator of female fertility. It was thought that competency in meiotic restitution in microspores could indicate similar competency in megaspores. Pollen fertility was compared among seeded diploids and edible triploids of Musa and correlated with ovule fertility. Viability was examined using the Alexander's pollen stain procedure. The seeded diploid species M. acuminata, M. balbisiana, and M. ornata had 3 times more viable pollen than the edible tetraploids (AAAB). M. balbisiana and M. ornata had significantly more viable pollen than M. acuminata. The tetraploids contained 3 times more viable pollen than the edible triploids AAA […] The AAA triploid Gros Michel had the highest percentage of viable pollen at 13% […] "

Pollen fertility in Musa : Viability in cultivars grown in Southern Australia, J. A. Fortescue, D. W. Turner, Australian Journal of Agricultural Research, January 2004
If your idea is original, you should consider patenting it. By first posting your idea here, you put it into the public domain. Somebody else might steal your idea and get it patented before you do.

I believe that Dwarf Cavendish fruit aren't seeded.
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Old 09-30-2018, 12:07 PM   #8 (permalink)
 
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Default Re: How to breed (seedless) Bananas for Temperate climates

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Originally Posted by aruzinsky View Post
If your idea is original, you should consider patenting it.
I'm pretty sure it's not new information, it's just that there are few people informed about all the science behind breeding bananas, few banana enthusiasts know about how chromosome set numbers really work.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Richard View Post
Namwa and Pisang Ceylon work well in our climate ... have you tried growing them?
Oh really? That's a bit presumptious of you.
I would like to develop bananas to grow well in the Pacific Northwest climate, zone 8.

Perhaps won't be too challenging, all the ornamental Musa basjoo I see growing here don't even lose their fronds over the Winter, with a little bit of light snow, even though the fronds do look pretty trashed afterwards (still kind of green though, and I think they might even still be semi-functional by Spring).
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Old 09-30-2018, 05:23 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Default Re: How to breed (seedless) Bananas for Temperate climates

Anything over tetraploids is a dead end in bananas, look up the man who pioneered the sterile diploid ➡️colchicine ➡️fertile tetraploid x diploid ➡️ new triploid. He thought the same as you initially, but found the theory incorrect. Basjoo is not a good candidate , as it is of dubious compatability but further to that the ones you see are the result of generations of tc multiplication and have fertility issues.
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Old 03-08-2019, 10:35 PM   #10 (permalink)
 
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Default Re: How to breed (seedless) Bananas for Temperate climates

I was going to try to cross Helen's Hybrid with Blue Java, but unfortunately the Helen's Hybrid seeds I bought never germinated.

I would have collected the rare seeds that formed from the Blue Java fruits.

Most of those, I believe, would be tetraploid. That's because the rare seeds that would appear in a triploid variety would have been formed by unreduced gametes from the triploid (3n) combining with normal haploid gametes (1n).
(Normally triploids undergoing meoisis have problems because they cannot be evenly split, so the gametes that form are not viable, which happens to in large part explain the lack of seeds)

Then once that second tetraploid generation was crossed against with a diploid variety (i.e. normal species cultivar that has lots of seed), it would yield a triploid variety that would be seedless.
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Old 03-09-2019, 12:11 AM   #11 (permalink)
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Default Re: How to breed (seedless) Bananas for Temperate climates

Most of what you describe is rather unrealistic, I'm sorry to say, the end goal is probably possible, but it's likely not going to be obtainable by crossing those common cultivars. Additionally, anything with a B genome is very difficult to breed with due to eBSV (Banana Streak Virus).

As a banana breeder myself, I would recommend to start super super simple, and literally just try to cross anything and not get caught up in planning exactly what to cross and thinking about what the results will be. It can be quite a challenge to generate hybrid seedlings of any sort, let alone ones that will conform to your desires, and its a numbers game where you will need to generate and sort through hundreds to thousands of seedlings to get something that might resemble what you had in mind.

I would also recommend to read up on how edible bananas work. Simmonds' "Bananas" and "The Evolution of the Bananas" are essentials. Breeding edible bananas is not all about ploidy, and in fact, ploidy levels are not even that important to consider overall.
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Old 03-09-2019, 07:29 PM   #12 (permalink)
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Default Re: How to breed (seedless) Bananas for Temperate climates

Gabe is right. Im yet to cross anything with expectations of seeds, just been practising technique, most of my wild sp are just reaching flowering size. But as Gabe said, cross lots and cross anything you have flowering. read, the literature suggested above, any research papers posted here or available online, plus general and varietal information promusa. If youre planting purely with the intention to breed, research the varieties you want to cross, there is information around on the fertility of some varieties. No point trying to breed mules.
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Old 03-18-2019, 01:52 PM   #13 (permalink)
 
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Default Re: How to breed (seedless) Bananas for Temperate climates

Quote:
Originally Posted by SoCal2warm View Post
I would like to develop bananas to grow well in the Pacific Northwest climate, zone 8.
I live in Portland. I don’t know much about breeding bananas but would love to see where this goes as far as bananas hardy for our climate. I have a basjoo and Cali gold outside and both survived the winter under mulch and frost cloth.
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