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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 11-27-2010, 06:13 AM   #1 (permalink)
 
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Default Weed Control

We are planting 5 rows of bananas 10 per row. So far half the suckers are planted. The plan is to put a thick layer of old wood chips along the rows [leaving a bare space around each plant]. And probably leaving grass down the corridors between the rows. A friend suggested that we first put down a layer of cardboard[ corrugated or old cartons what ever is available]then put the wood chips on top. I think wood chips would be OK but cardboard under the chips??? I started to put the cardboard down but thought it better to check whether it is beneficial for the banana plants. Thanks and God Bless.:
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Old 11-27-2010, 06:18 PM   #2 (permalink)
 
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Default Re: Weed Control

Hi Two Edged...:

I would advise strongly against cardboard or newspapers as weed control, unless your bananas are on a slope and you can arrange it in a reverse pattern to roof shingle, i.e., start from the top, so that water can run from the upper layer underneath the next layer. If you area is relatively dry, it won't let enough water through, if you live in an area prone to strong rainfall, you may cause erosion nearby from the run-off. The thing to use underneath your wood chips is landscaping cloth, obtainable from your friendly neighbourhood garden- or hardware shop.

I have done the reverse shingle thing many years ago, under newly planted junipers. It worked well, but there was an about 10% slope.

Wood chips use up a lot of nitrogen as they decompose, therefore you will have to take that in account, when fertilizing. Also over time dust and pollen settle in between the chips and provide new soil for weed growth.

I have used in more recent years ground cover as weed control (See:
What is blooming in your garden today (other plants)? 2nd, 3rd, 6th and 7th pictures of the two posts). That has the big disadvantage, that during the first couple of years you still have to get down and do some weeding. In the third year the cover is usually too tight, that weed seeds cannot get through and if they do, they germinate in the dark and die. However any dust and pollen settling into the ground cover will just add to the soil base.

The ground cover was a good solution for me, because I am retired and have now no problem with weeding, but I cannot expect this always to be the case.

Best,
Olaf
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Old 11-27-2010, 07:53 PM   #3 (permalink)
 
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Default Re: Weed Control

Thanks Olaf,
The plants are on the flat. Your suggestion: use landscaping cloth is a better idea ! Thanks for your garden photos- beautiful!
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Old 11-27-2010, 08:18 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: Weed Control

A 4-6 layer of compost or mulch will keep the weeds down, and with some added fertilizer, provide a very fertile root zone. Ad some additional material a couple times a year. I spend about 30 minutes (yes 30 minutes) a year weeding my bananas (100 or so varieties) because the compost layer deters all but a few weed seed that are blown in with the winds. The ones that do sprout are easy to pull in the soft compost layer.
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Old 11-27-2010, 10:53 PM   #5 (permalink)
 
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Smile Re: Weed Control

Thanks Pitangadiego. You mean 4-6 INCHES of compost or mulch, right?
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Old 05-29-2013, 10:42 PM   #6 (permalink)
 
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Unhappy Re: Weed Control

hi to all! this is my first time in bananas.org.. for now i have a 20 hectares of Musa saba here in the Philippines. with my experience, i thought we can manage the weed properly through manual weeding using slashing bolo with 7 workers but the area is too big already thats why i decided to use the grass cutter in my farm. A 75 percent of cogon grass has to be controlled in the farm and after 2 weeks i will Spray Glyphosate.
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Old 05-30-2013, 02:47 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Default Re: Weed Control

I also had my weed spread but the parents are`nt giving much pup compared to when the plot was small and i was cutting the weed.Just wondering if this low pup production is due to the spray i used.if so is there a better spray that can avoid this defect
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Old 05-30-2013, 05:19 AM   #8 (permalink)
 
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Default Re: Weed Control

Quote:
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I also had my weed spread but the parents are`nt giving much pup compared to when the plot was small and i was cutting the weed.Just wondering if this low pup production is due to the spray i used.if so is there a better spray that can avoid this defect
Glyphosate only kills what you spray it on if your careful it shouldn't affect your banana plants.. I grow sweet potatoes as ground cover
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Old 05-30-2013, 09:13 AM   #9 (permalink)
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Default Re: Weed Control

I just spray around the plants in the row and keep the row middles in grass. After a while, not much will grow in the row due to shading.
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Old 05-30-2013, 10:32 AM   #10 (permalink)
 
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Default Re: Weed Control

I'm in South Florida where the grass is extremely invasive. I do put cardboard down as weed blocker in all of my raised beds. It won't hurt the plants, it will just help kill anything under it, and keep it from coming up. Then, over time, it just breaks down and composts.
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Old 05-30-2013, 12:15 PM   #11 (permalink)
 
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Default Re: Weed Control

Ryan, Gingin, Redswe and Figaro, It would help greatly in relating to your posts, if you
would state the hardiness zone, you live in, in your profile. I noticed, that Figaro mentioned
in his last post, that he hails from South Florida, but that won't be available in future posts,
unless he states it every time.

Vegetation types and their treatments differ greatly throughout the hardiness scale.

Thanks,
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Old 05-30-2013, 12:52 PM   #12 (permalink)
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Default Re: Weed Control

If it was me I'd mow it.
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Old 05-31-2013, 09:18 AM   #13 (permalink)
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Default Re: Weed Control

It requires an occasional spraying, maybe 3 times/year.

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Old 05-31-2013, 02:27 PM   #14 (permalink)
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Default Re: Weed Control

Just as an FYI the situation below reflects a twin row system on 18' centers. The twin rows are 6' apart and the within row spacing is 7'-offset. It's a 700 plants per acre system that is only possible for me because it is at my house and I work at it every day. It gets regular fertilization, regular desuckering, regular irrigation, regular deleafing, and fungicide sprays. High plant populations are disastrous if they aren't cared for constantly.
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Old 05-31-2013, 08:51 PM   #15 (permalink)
 
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Default Re: Weed Control

Quote:
Originally Posted by Nicolas Naranja View Post
It requires an occasional spraying, maybe 3 times/year.

Thanks for the photo Our rows and are a bit closer together . The plants always need regular maintaince. Old wood chips as top cover work to stop weeds.
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Old 05-31-2013, 10:47 PM   #16 (permalink)
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Default Re: Weed Control

Quote:
Originally Posted by Narnia View Post
Thanks for the photo Our rows and are a bit closer together . The plants always need regular maintaince. Old wood chips as top cover work to stop weeds.
If I had a place to get wood chips cheaply, I might do that instead.
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Old 06-01-2013, 09:38 AM   #17 (permalink)
 
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Default Re: Weed Control

I space my banana plants 10 feet apart and this helps gives them space to grow and reduce disease pressure. So far I only have three banana plants though. Anyone having problems with black sigatoka?
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Old 06-01-2013, 05:45 PM   #18 (permalink)
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Default Re: Weed Control

Quote:
Originally Posted by JCA433 View Post
I space my banana plants 10 feet apart and this helps gives them space to grow and reduce disease pressure. So far I only have three banana plants though. Anyone having problems with black sigatoka?

Black sigatoka is only bad on certain varieties and is much worsr in dade county
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