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Main Banana Discussion This is where we discuss our banana collections; tips on growing bananas, tips on harvesting bananas, sharing our banana photos and stories.

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Old 10-04-2022, 04:38 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Cut down or wait it out: salt water damage from Ian

So I thought I'd pose this question to group... while I've grown many bananas for years and put up with different growing conditions and storm recovery, this is a first for me with salt water.

Hurricane Ian surge covered our yard with 3 feet of salt water for about 12 or so hours before receding. I cut down 75% of bananas but a few seemed ready ready to bloom... Most don't have any viable leaves. Cut the stalk down or wait and see?. Any leaves left on my plants are getting yellower and yellower. A few have bunches but I harvested rather than try and fix the snapped stalks (which really weren't recoverable). I had a Gold Finger that needed another 6 weeks but couldn't hoist / stake it up myself as way too heavy....

What has been others experience with salt water and what worked to get to recovery best? Just wait it out, water extensively, cut them now to save some growing season?

Of my 15 varieties, seems Raja Puri fared the best, Super Dwarf Cav. is a total loss, Saba all snapped, and Brazilian lost all leaves in wind.
Blue Java, Raja Puri, Goldfinger FHIA-01, Mona Lisa FHIA-02, Sweetheart FHIA-03, Pitogo, Saba, Dwarf Cavendish, Super Dwarf Cav., Namwa, Brazilian, Mysore, Dwarf Red, and a mystery or two
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Old 10-04-2022, 05:40 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: Cut down or wait it out: salt water damage from Ian

Really sorry about not just your plants but everything else that's happened down there. No idea about the salt water thing.
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Old 10-04-2022, 10:07 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: Cut down or wait it out: salt water damage from Ian

Wow, never really thought about the salt water damage!

Other than flushing with lots of fresh water I have no other clues how to deal with that.

I've used rock salt in a gravel parking lot to kill weeds and it was very effective.
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Old 10-05-2022, 08:05 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: Cut down or wait it out: salt water damage from Ian

i have some friends that live just above tampa i have known since the 90's, i visit them alot. they live in an area that has a number of manmade canals connected to springs which go to the gulf, so the canals are most of the time fresh water. but they get extreme high tides 2, 3 times a year. going to as much as 5ft. or more.

there are many people there growing bananas low enough that, with an extreme high tide, the bananas are under water for some time. and i am one of them. but not for 12 hrs., 6 or 8 maybe. most of the bananas everybody else has are orinoco or dwarf cavendish, most. anyways the salt does not seem to affect them. i see fruit all the time.

but i will say again, not for 12 hrs. that i know of.

npk of wood ash 0/1/3 to 0/3/7

npk of banana leaf ash 1.75/0.75/0.5

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Old 10-05-2022, 02:46 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Default Re: Cut down or wait it out: salt water damage from Ian

I am always in favor of wait and see. Generally you have nothing to loose, and everything to gain. As long at you remove anything that is rotten, brown and mushy, let the rest play out.

Had a bunch of Fhia-18 that has been on the ground all summer and just ripened about 35 pounds. ad nothing to loose by letting things play out.
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Old 10-05-2022, 05:03 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Default Re: Cut down or wait it out: salt water damage from Ian

Originally Posted by twotallgirls View Post

What has been others experience with salt water
Sea water has a salinity of 3.5% and many banana growers irrigate daily with water that has a salinity of 0.2%.

Your bananas will be fine.

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