|Better Farming Series 18. Bananas (FAO, 1977, 27 p.)|
|Looking after the plantation|
Pruning banana plants is called suckering.
There are several ways of doing this.
We shall deal with only one way.
The offshoot that you planted is called the parent plant.
Four months after planting, cut away all the suckers that have sprouted except one.
Cut the suckers off at ground level or below the surface of the ground.
Keep the best sucker, the one that is best placed.
The plantation is laid out in rows, so that if the suckers are in the same line, the plantation rows are unchanged.
Four months after this first suckering, the parent plant is 8 months old and the one remaining sucker is 4 months old. Once again, cut off all the other suckers except one.
About 10 months after planting (taking Poyo bananas as an example), the parent plant produces fruits.
Harvest these fruits, and cut down the parent plant. The first generation sucker is now 6 months old and the second generation is 2 months old.
You can use a machete or axe to cut out the suckers you do not want to keep.