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Subject: Agricultural Science
Topic: Husbandry Of Selected Crops
Subtopic: Production of Banana (Musa spp)
Lesson Objectives: At the end of the lesson, learners should be able to:
i. Explain how banana is cultivated and harvested,
ii. State the various pests and disease that affect banana.
PRODUCTION OF BANANA
Uses: Banana serves as a human food in the form of puree, chips, flour, dessert and cooked vegetables. Banana materials are used as livestock feed and as wrapping and tying materials. Banana plants are also used as nurse-crops for cocoa and coffee.
Ecology: A mean monthly temperature of 29°C and an average annual rainfall of 2000 – 2500mm which is well distributed are optimal for banana production. Banana requires a well-drained loamy soil which is rich in organic matter and has a pH range of 5.0 – 7.5. The crop does not stand saline and windy conditions.
Parts Of Banana Plant: Banana consists of the various parts as illustrated in the diagram below.
Husbandry: Clear the land and burn the area. Mark out the area and dig planting holes of about 45 × 45 × 45cm at the marked spots. Commercially, bananas are propagated vegetatively. Planting is preferable during the early and middle parts of the rainy season. Plant the suckers in the already prepared holes, fill up the holes with rich top soil after transplanting and press firmly at the base of each transplanted sucker. Mulch each plant after planting and provide wind break early in the life of the plantation. The usual spacing is 3 – 3.5cm between plant for the larger clones but shorter clones require closer spacing. Banana has a high demand for nitrogen and potash. Potassic and phosphatic fertilizers are applied at planting and thereafter twice yearly while nitrogen should be applied at short intervals. Bananas mature in 9 – 18 months but this depends on the cultivar, the climatic conditions and the cultural practices.
Harvesting: Cut the pseudostem and the bunch stalk with a matchet.
Storage: Banana is highly perishable but it can be sliced, dried and stored under dry conditions or stored in a refrigerator with the humidity and the oxygen/carbondioxide ratio under control, or stored in a form of puree or flour. However, banana is readily sold locally in Nigeria.
Pests: Banana pests are burrowing nematodes, banana weevils, rust thrips, fruit scarring beetle etc
Diseases: leaf spot, bunchy top, crown rot, and Anthracnose are the major banana diseases.
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Take a quick test for this lesson
- Explain how banana is cultivated and harvested.
- State the various pests and diseases that affect banana.
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