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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 05-09-2007, 11:46 AM   6 links from elsewhere to this Post. Click to view. #1 (permalink)
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Default Time to separate the pups for the Spring

The following is a step-by-step guide to cutting a pup from a mother plant. This method is very quick and easy and I'm sure if you give it a try, you will be much more likely to move pups around, as you'll find it fast and fun. The result will be many more banana plants colonizing your property, much sooner. And you know what that means. So follow along with me as we seperate a Pitogo huli from it's mother...

Tools required - deep scoop, short handle shovel and a sledgehammer (I usually use a much bigger sledge than this though!).



This is where we will be working. This plant has been growing quite slow for me, so I figure if I remove the pup and move it over a bit, the two stalks won't be competing for the limited nutrition in that area where they are together now. I'll also amend the soil before I'm done.



Positioning of the cut. Place your scoop close to the mother plant that will remain. Notice the pseudostem is nested right alongside the handle of the shovel, touching. The handle is also used to fold the leaf away from your line of sight. Now position the angle of your cut by moving the handle where you hold the shovel away from the mother plant. This gives you an angle that will cut a little bit under the mother plant, or at least cut away from the base of the pup, leaving the most valuable corm material to remain on the pup. This step is important! Line everything up properly.



Sink the blade. With one hand, hold the handle of your shovel in place so you do not tip your shovel and hit your head with the handle when you smack the scoop with your sledgehammer. If you do not hold the shovel steady, it may strike your head violently. Holding the handle in place also makes sure you keep the angle you want.



Here you see the blade is sunk almost to it's base. The corm is severed and now we can lift the pup up and away from the mother.



A look down the incision and we can see the umbilical has been cut. This is when you pump the handle to pry the corm and roots up and out of the ground.



A perpendicular cut is made in this case to assist with popping the sucker out of the earth. Don't worry so much about the roots, enough will remain. What we're after is corm, the potato-like white mass under the stalk.



Up, up, and away.



Now we take a break and walk to get some compost. I use and recommend the UCT-9 compost bins manufactured by Urban Garden Center.



I use the lid as a tray to dump some compost on to carry it back to the planting site.



We're back with some compost.



Using your hands, mix the compost with the surrounding soil and press it down into the hole where the pup was. The roots from the mother plant will bury themselves into the compost and the plant will get a boost of energy for some time to come.



After returning from a trip to the compost barrels, we prepare a new planting hole not far away from the mother in the same manner, amending the soil with additional compost.



The finished product. Now we have two happy Pitogo banana plants, they won't even know what hit them. You can water at this point or just wait for rain.



The whole process can be done in under five minutes.
If you follow these steps, you will have great success in propogating bananas and you will see that by doing this often with your plants whenever the chance arises, the long term effect is plenty of plants that will grow taller, faster, and will be spreading the yard as fast as you can move them around.



Update: there were also some videos added on page three of this thread showing the pry bar method. Pasting the videos here as well:



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Last edited by MediaHound : 06-17-2010 at 04:55 PM. Reason: added the pry bar method of removing banana pups videos from page 3 to this first post also
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Old 05-09-2007, 01:13 PM   #2 (permalink)
 
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Default Re: Time to separate the pups for the Spring

Excellent tutorial! Thanks so much!!!
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Old 05-09-2007, 10:38 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: Time to separate the pups for the Spring

Already potted up several dozen this season. I use a digging bar with about a 2-1/2 wide blade. A lot less parent plant root damage than with the spade.
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Old 05-10-2007, 07:43 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: Time to separate the pups for the Spring

Jon, do you use a hammer with the bar or just use your hands?
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Old 05-10-2007, 09:02 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Default Re: Time to separate the pups for the Spring

Nohammer, it is heavy enough to jab in between the pup and parent.

Similar to http://www.acehardware.com/sm-collin...i-1274440.html
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Old 05-10-2007, 10:43 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Default Re: Time to separate the pups for the Spring

http://www.leidytool.com
These guys have some good ones, too. They protect you from shock if you have to worry about that sort of thing for the other jobs you'll use it for.

I need to buy a digging bar to add to my arsenal, too.
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Old 05-12-2007, 08:12 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Default Re: Time to separate the pups for the Spring

I have seen the digging bars for sale at local flee markets..
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Old 05-12-2007, 10:19 AM   #8 (permalink)
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Smile Re: Time to separate the pups for the Spring

Media Hound,

Thanks for posting such a detailed thread. This is great!
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Old 05-12-2007, 11:20 AM   #9 (permalink)
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Default Re: Time to separate the pups for the Spring

Thanks, Austin, you're very welcome.
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Old 05-13-2007, 11:38 AM   #10 (permalink)
 
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Default Re: Time to separate the pups for the Spring

Very clear and informative Jarred. Thanks.
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Old 05-17-2007, 09:54 AM   #11 (permalink)
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Default Re: Time to separate the pups for the Spring

Welcome, IC!

I just bought a digging bar, these nanners better watch out.
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Old 05-17-2007, 05:53 PM   #12 (permalink)
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Default Re: Time to separate the pups for the Spring

Nice job, Jarred. I need to get a compost barrel like that. My girlfriend's mom was going to give us hers, but it's the kind that just sits there and you can't rotate it. Kind of pointless if you need to dig into it periodically to get the older stuff.

I have an easier job of separating pups in the spring, Jarred. You see, mine are all under the house bareroot (except for the cold-hardy ones in the ground). I just snap them off before planting, lol!
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Old 05-17-2007, 06:10 PM   #13 (permalink)
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Default Re: Time to separate the pups for the Spring

Quote:
Originally Posted by pitangadiego View Post
I use a digging bar with about a 2-1/2 wide blade.
Jon, are you talking about a San Angelo bar? Those things are awesome. I used one to remove a small tree, for crying out loud. Great for difficult jobs, prying stuff loose, etc. Never would have thought about using it to remove a little banana pup, but I bet it does the job very quickly and easily. Those things are like 6 feet long and weigh 17 lbs.
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Old 05-17-2007, 09:32 PM   #14 (permalink)
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Default Re: Time to separate the pups for the Spring

There are a lot of variations on a theme. Mine happens to be a "Roughneck" brand.

see http://www.screwfix.com/app/sfd/cat/pro.jsp?id=62496 or
http://www.tractorsupplyco.com/detai...roductID=25068
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Old 05-18-2007, 09:52 AM   #15 (permalink)
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Default Re: Time to separate the pups for the Spring

That's the exact one I got.
Home Depot, I think it was $27.
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Old 05-18-2007, 10:09 AM   #16 (permalink)
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Default Re: Time to separate the pups for the Spring

Frank, you can get them on eBay a for a little bit of a discount sometimes vs. getting them directly from the manufacturer. They burn through the material really quickly, keep it moist and in the sunlight.. it gets burning hot and things break down in there quite fast. I did a ton of homework before I decided to get this particular model, I reviewed most all the composters on the market.
I also use a Flowtron leaf eater and a chipper too.
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Old 05-18-2007, 10:22 AM   #17 (permalink)
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Default Re: Time to separate the pups for the Spring

Do you like the flowtron, i.e. would you buy the thign again? How heavy duty is it. I bag about 40 bags of elaves a year and would love to be able to use them more effectively.

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Old 05-18-2007, 04:43 PM   #18 (permalink)
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Default Re: Time to separate the pups for the Spring

I like it! It does a great job of pulverizing the leaves into a fine, usable substrate.
Keep a screwdriver nearby when you use it, so when the head gets jammed up with fiber, you can easily pop it off and clean it out and get back to mulching fast. It doesn't like damp banana fibers (the midribs), they get stuck, but it still gets them to the point where they compost faster in the barrels, so I don't mind mixing them in if I'm out there shredding things.
Flowtron sells refurbished ones on eBay, their username is flowtronproducs
http://myworld.ebay.com/flowtronproducts
It's built pretty good, it has a circuit breaker and is pretty durable, too. You won't be disappointed if you get one.
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Old 05-19-2007, 08:55 AM   #19 (permalink)
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Default Re: Time to separate the pups for the Spring

fabulous! a great lesson for us novices!
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Old 05-19-2007, 05:47 PM   #20 (permalink)
 
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Default Re: Time to separate the pups for the Spring

I am soooo glad you mentioned the diigging tool! I was just out struggling in our clay soil with a couple of shovels, then - DUH - remembered that we have a digging tool! It's making the planting alot easier!
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Hardy Palm and Subtropical Board: Re: banana questions This thread Refback 03-01-2008 02:36 PM
Bananas This thread Refback 02-13-2008 03:59 AM
How do you separate a pup? - Banana Forum - GardenWeb This thread Refback 02-10-2008 07:38 AM
How do I separate banana pups from the mother? - Tropicalesque Garden Forum - GardenWeb This thread Refback 02-05-2008 08:05 PM
How do you separate a pup? - Banana Forum - GardenWeb This thread Refback 02-04-2008 08:28 AM
How do I separate banana pups from the mother? - Tropicalesque Garden Forum - GardenWeb This thread Refback 02-04-2008 08:17 AM

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