Banana Circle: How we’re growing bananas in Florida – When I built this banana circle, and recorded the video in 2020, I didn’t know that banana plants weren’t banana trees … but you grow as a gardener and learn. I’ve also included answers to other banana growing questions in the description below.
UPDATE: Quick view of the Banana Circle 2 Years Later
Shout out to Coach Kim my personal health and fitness coach. She coaches virtually and you can learn more about her health programs at https://thekfactorcoaching.com/ She is helping me transform my health for life. Thank you Coach! I am forever grateful.
What is a Banana Circle?
A banana circle is a permaculture design that utilizes interplanting to create a more efficient and productive growing space. The design consists of planting banana plants around the perimeter of a garden bed, with other plants in the center. This simple arrangement maximizes space and sunlight, allowing each plant to reach its fullest potential. The Banana circle is an excellent example of how permaculture principles can be used to create more efficient systems that benefit both people and the planet.
In our banana circle we have interplanted taro, ginger, and sweet potatoes. And in the center we compost the banana leaves, yard waste, and collect water like in a hugelkultur mound, just under the ground.
Do Bananas Grow on Trees?
Bananas do not grow on trees. Bananas look like they grow trees, but are actually giant herbs related to lilies and orchids. In fact, they are the world’s largest herbaceous flowering plant. The scientific name for banana is Musa acuminata, and they are native to Southeast Asia.
Bananas are classed as berries, and they grow in clusters around the end of a its branches. A commercial banana plant can produce up to 120kg of bananas a year, making them a very productive crop!
Bananas have been cultivated for thousands of years and were even mentioned in the Hindu epic, the Ramayana. They were also found in the legendary lost city of Atlantis! Today, bananas are grown in over 130 countries and are one of the most popular fruits in the world.
How Fast do Banana Trees Grow?
It’s really a plant, and not a tree … but with the right growing conditions, banana plants grow fast! In general, a banana plant will reach full maturity within two years. The height of the plant depends on the cultivation process, but they can grow up to 20 feet tall.
Bananas are not picky when it comes to soil requirements and can grow in a wide range of climates. However, they do need ample sunlight and plenty of water—especially when the fruits are forming. Once the bananas are ripe, the leaves will turn yellow and then brown as the fruit reaches its final stage of ripeness. At this point, it’s ready for harvest!
Will Bananas Grow in Florida?
YES! Our banana circle is proof. Bananas can be grown in Florida, but they will need to be protected from freezes. The plants will likely die if temperatures drop below about 28 degrees Fahrenheit.
Do Bananas Grow Upside Down?
Yes. Bananas do grow upside down. They grow from within a flower and the banana flower opens slowly over a period of several days. At first, the petals are folded together inside the bud. As the flower matures, the petals slowly spread apart until the entire bud is open. Each day a new row of bananas (called a hand) appears. Once all the bananas are showing, the banana plant continues to expose male only flowers that our bees and other pollinators love to snack on.
About Michelle in the Meadow
I am a suburban gardener located in zone 9A in Northeast Florida. I started growing in this suburban lot in 2019 and have expanded the garden every year. In 2020 I started making Facebook Videos about the garden, and in 2022 created this YouTube channel. I enjoy making content about my garden, what I’m learning, and from time to time the general vlog, too.
Tools I Use In The Garden
The Amazon links I share below are affiliate links, which means I may receive a small commission if you click or make a purchase. Please know my opinions are my own and not influenced by any commission.
My current favorite brand of grow bags – because the handles are made of webbing material and hold up to the Florida sun and heat.
My Gorilla Cart has been working hard for me since 2019, and I still love it. I made one modification and added solid rubber tires from Harbor Freight.
Michelle in the Meadow YouTube Channel https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCbUGYMmjynlYUxC_-Mz5Kng
Facebook Page https://www.facebook.com/michelleinthemeadow
Vego vs Birdies Video Playlist https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLlFCKM1rTPP4ITKEgIAyP_CMThasAxYS9
#bananas #permaculture #zone9a