Aquaponic Gardening

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Banana diseases Black Sigatoka, Panama disease

More important than ever to find ways to produce more food. I have discovered this disease on my Bananas and have learned the future for bananas could be grim. Especially sad for people in undeveloped areas like Africa, Asia, Central and South America, that rely heavily on these bananas and plantains for a large portion of their food. Being a promoter of home gardening I always enjoyed seeing them grown in private gardens, allowing people to sustain part of their diet. Also a large part of the sustainable animal feed in these areas. I have been expanding my bananas and am up to maybe 200 or more many of which will be unproductive or destroyed? I have always tried to diversify partially for this reason. Hate to bear more bad news but thought you might like a heads up. http://www.guardian.co.uk/science/2003/jan/16/gm.science

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That will be a sad day. Bananas are my favourite

Reminds me of an experiment we were lectured on as students - In the experiment, a colony of rats were given all they needed except space.  The inevitible result was always death.  As soon as space is reduced (in the banana's case a sad effect of monocropping in large areas) pathogens can and will cause catastrophic declines.  In the rats' case, stress, disease and fighting was also a serious problem, even with abundant food.  Sound familiar? Technically though, This is a bit of an over statement.  Such an outbreak can decimate an industry, but with a bit of planning the total loss of every banana plant in existance can easily be avoided.  Same principle as to how plants survived ice ages in refugia.  Not as if the whole planet turned to ice and then thawed with no plant in sight.

 

Still, I need to get a few of our local variety going here now that the drought is over.........we go through a couple of bunches a week over here

Interesting story about the rats Kobus. You don't mind if I use that one sometime. 

Farming methods are definately to blame. If you put out an all you can eat buffet for a pest or pathogen of course it is going to breed and spread. Couple that with the density of plant spacing in banana plantations and you have a dank environment for fungal diseases to proliferate.

The problem here in the States is as soon as it hits our shores, the USDA will probably mandate that private individuals have to destroy all their plants in order to protect the banana growing industry. Who knows?

Bumping off all bananas would be moronic.  Fungus cannot just  "jump" hundreds of kilometers of fresh air to find your tree thus sound management should be enough.  If you are in prime banana farming areas you may have a problem but keeping a few going somewhere far removed in your back garden cannot be problematic as far as I am concerned.

Miguel Afonso said:

Interesting story about the rats Kobus. You don't mind if I use that one sometime. 

Farming methods are definately to blame. If you put out an all you can eat buffet for a pest or pathogen of course it is going to breed and spread. Couple that with the density of plant spacing in banana plantations and you have a dank environment for fungal diseases to proliferate.

The problem here in the States is as soon as it hits our shores, the USDA will probably mandate that private individuals have to destroy all their plants in order to protect the banana growing industry. Who knows?

The problem around here is when there is some sort of plant "disease" the professional growers sometimes try to push the government to destroy the private holdings and dooryard crops I guess because they see people growing their own as competition.  Happens around here with citrus and even with some diseases that don't render the crop unusable but just not as pretty.

 

Growing bananas at home is also a good thing since commercial grown bananas are some of the most heavily sprayed crops  but here on the mainland USA there are very few places that bananas grow all that well (as in there are only a few very small zones in the continental USA where freezes don't happen most winters) so I don't expect much impact on dooryard bananas here.

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