How much time from blossom to ripe? (ice cream)

bob3October 3, 2006

The blossom of the Ice Cream banana plant started opening last week; how much time 'till the first hand is ready for munching?

We're zone 9 (a & b) Sacramento area.

Here is a link that might be useful:

Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
pitangadiego(San Diego, CA)

Mark the date on the side of the trunk with a felt pen, wait 6 months, cut off the top hand, let them ripen and try them.

    Bookmark   October 4, 2006 at 12:42AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I've heard of the 6 month time estimate, but they look to be growing faster than that.
Am I just having a "wishful thinking" attack?

    Bookmark   October 4, 2006 at 12:53PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
pitangadiego(San Diego, CA)


    Bookmark   October 4, 2006 at 9:51PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
dirt_dew(z9 az)

If your weather gets too cold it may take longer than 6 months. They may slow or stop and resume when it gets warmer. Be patient.

    Bookmark   October 4, 2006 at 11:54PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Most bananas will ripen in 3 months if watered daily.

Here is a link that might be useful: banana growing info

    Bookmark   October 23, 2006 at 9:04PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Posted by banana-grower(gw:banana-grower) on Mon, Oct 23, 06 at 21:04

"Most bananas will ripen in 3 months if watered daily."

I'd like to see proof of that claim!

    Bookmark   October 23, 2006 at 10:39PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

hi momol, check out info on growing for banana crops on any search site. i have over 500 grown plants 20 kinds and none take over 4 months. how can anyone prove it???

Here is a link that might be useful: my banana plants

    Bookmark   October 27, 2006 at 11:57PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I'm calling nonsense on you "banana-grower". Your just trying to hype your website, and or sell more plants. Let's just come back to this post in 3 months and see what you have to say when this fellows bananas are no where near to being ripe, unless of course your a Mult. (same person different id)

Btw, I have a yard full of plants, some with fruit that's been hanging for over 6 months now and they get everything they need. I have been around bananas for 15 years and have never seen a fruit ripen on the plant in 3 months and that includes Ice Creams. Sorry Bob3, your going to have to wait a bit longer.

    Bookmark   October 30, 2006 at 8:03PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

hi, Im sepeaking of my banana plants not yours,...You must grow them properly to ge them to ripe in 3 months, fert, water and keep the plants to max. of 3 plants per mat. That means one large one med. and one small plant per group. Banana plants are tropical plants and may take a lot longer to ripen up north or might rot first,....... I am in Sunny florida and they ripen as they are suppose to. Why don't you email a commercial grower or research it from the web...mono and see what they say, No grower would even try producing bananas if they would get a bunch toripen in under 4 months, they have to keep plantng regular crops ad it would be hopeless, Bananas are my hobby and i don't need to hype the #1 banana website on the net. Good LUCK, and God bless your bananas and u.

    Bookmark   November 1, 2006 at 9:48AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Ahh, I guess because it says so on your website that makes it so. I guess you didn't notice that bob3 lives in zone 9.........hello, that aint the tropics. I'm in zone 10 and this season has been perfect with nice humidity and perfect temps, plenty of organic food, sunlight all day long, no pests, plenty of water, and still over 6 months now on the plants. Hmmmm, guess I'm just not twisting my mouth right ehh, or maybe it's the unperfect air in LA? No wait, maybe it's because the Bananas here in Sunny So Cal aren't in a big rush to ripen before the next hurricane!

Like I said, we'll meet back here in 3 months and see what happens for bob3 with his Ice Creams in Zone 9. Mark it your calendar!

    Bookmark   November 2, 2006 at 6:33PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Hello, Viruses, Fungus and Diseasees will all slow growth and blooming. You seem more determind to prove me wrong than to do any other research. Maby thats why your having a problem. I will not respond to your attitude any more. But for all others just ask. Professional growers know I'm right just ask them. And still good luck to all and maby it would pay to buy disease free plants from Tissue cultures.

Here is a link that might be useful: My banana info site

    Bookmark   November 3, 2006 at 1:56PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

My banana bloomed May 5, another one about a month later...both were ripe and starting to yellow by late September. I'm in Whittier, CA.

    Bookmark   November 3, 2006 at 6:52PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

"And still good luck to all and maby it would pay to buy disease free plants from Tissue cultures."

Statements like this show your true colors. Just keep shooting yourself in the foot genius.

Less than 3 months now!

    Bookmark   November 4, 2006 at 3:05PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Here's a good site ( see link below) that will explain the reason why profesional growers use only Tissue cultures now. Try making them ( tissue cultures) yourself its not hard and lots of fun...........................................................What is Tissue Culture ?
The propagation of a plant by using a plant part or single cell or group cell in a test tube under very controlled and hygienic conditions is called "Tissue Culture".

Status in India
Banana is a globally important fruit crop with 97.5 million tones of production. In India it supports livelihood of million of people. With total annual production of 16.91 million tones from 490.70 thousand ha., with national average of 33.5 T/ha. Maharashtra ranks first in production with 60 T/ha. Banana contributes 37% to total fruit production in India.

Banana is one of the major and economically important fruit crop of Maharashtra. Banana occupy 20% area among the total area under crop in India. Maharashtra ranks second in area and first in productivity in India. Jalgaon is a major Banana growing district in Maharashtra which occupy 50,000 hectares area under Banana. But most of Banana is grown by planting suckers. The technology development in agriculture is very fast, it results in developing Tissue Culture Technique.

Agro Climate
Banana is basically a tropical crop, grows well in temperature range of 13C  38ºC with RH regime of 75-85%. In India this crop is being cultivated in climate ranging from humid tropical to dry mild subtropics through selection of appropriate varieties like Grandnaine. Chilling injury occurs at temperatures below 12ºC. The normal growth of the banana begins at 18ºC, reaches optimum at 27ºC, then declines and comes to a halt at 38ºC. Higher temperature causes sun scorching. High velocity wind which exceeds 80 km phrs damages the crop.

Soil for banana should have good drainage, adequate fertility and moisture. Deep, rich loamy soil with pH between 6-7.5 are most preferred for banana cultivation. Ill drained, poorly aerated and nutritionally deficient soils are not suitable for banana. Saline solid, calcareous soil are not suitable for Banana cultivation. Avoided soil of low laying areas, very sandy & heavy black cotton with ill drainage.

A soil that is not too acidic & not too alkaline, rich in organic material with high nitrogen content, adequate phosphorus level and plenty of potash are good for banana.

In India banana is grown under diverse conditions and production systems. Selection of varieties, therefore is based on a large number of varieties catering to various kinds of needs and situations. However, around 20 cultivars viz. Dwarf Cavendish, Robusta, Monthan, Poovan, Nendran, Red banana, Nyali, Safed Velchi, Basarai, Ardhapuri, Rasthali, Karpurvalli, Karthali and Grandnaine etc..

Grandnaine is gaining popularity and may soon be the most preferred variety due to its tolerance to biotic stresses and good quality bunches. Bunches have well spaced hands with straight orientation of figures, bigger in size. Fruit develops attractive uniform yellow colour with better self life & quality than other cultivars.

Land Preparation
Prior to planting banana, grow the green manuring crop like daincha, cowpea etc. and burry it in the soil. The land can be ploughed 2-4 times and leveled. Use ratovator or harrow to break the clod and bring the soil to a fine tilt. During soil preparation basal dose of FYM is added and thoroughly mixed into the soil.

A pit size of 45cm x 45cm x 45cm is normally required. The pits are to be refilled with topsoil mixed with 10 kg of FYM (well decomposed), 250 gm of Neem cake and 20 gm of conbofuron. Prepared pits are left to solar radiation helps in killing the harmful insects, is effective against soil borne diseases and aids aeration. In saline alkali soil where PH is above 8 Pit mixture is to be modified to incorporate organic matter.

Addition of organic matter helps in reducing salinity while addition of purlite improves, porosity and aeration. Alternative to planting in pits is planting in furrows. Depnding on soil strata one can choose appropriate method as well as spacing and depth at which plant is required to be planted.

    Bookmark   November 5, 2006 at 2:20PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

you should not promote your own site--

    Bookmark   November 6, 2006 at 12:16AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
bcfromfl(z8a NW FL)

Unfortunately, the link provided by banana-grower (and cut-and-pasted above) doesn't seem to provide any info on tissue-culture. As a matter of fact, it says, "...most of Banana is grown by planting suckers."

Banana-grower operates in Melbourne, FL. Before I moved to the Florida Panhandle (and bringing my 'nanners with me!), I lived in Vero Beach -- which is a little less than an hour south of Melbourne on the Atlantic coast, or about 45 miles or so. Despite the fact that the two places are fairly close geographically, there is a transition between the sub-tropical and temperate zones between Vero and Melbourne, actually visible from I-95 as one drives between the two locations. I recall it getting quite a bit cooler in Melbourne during the winter months, so, to call it "sunny Florida" conjures images of conditions like those in Miami -- which is in truth substantially different.

I don't doubt that there are varieties which fruit sooner than the rule-of-thumb six months, but it's probably not accurate to lump all bananas into the same cultural/growth time-line as each other. Certainly it takes a bit more than "watering daily" to get them to fruit sooner. Watering daily during cooler months when bananas slow down will get you rot problems, so, a greater understanding of their growing requirements is necessary than this overly-simplified answer.

Surprisingly, there is a lack of info on the web concerning the length of time it takes to ripen bananas before harvesting -- although several sites discuss the post-harvest stage. I found the following which might explain how commercial growers are able to get away with harvesting a bit sooner, but also why grocery-store bananas are a bit "bland":

1. Q. I've got bananas growing in my backyard and, I know that you're not going to believe it, they have produced little bananas! When do I harvest the fruit and how do I make them ripen?

A. Unlike most other fruits, the banana will develop a resemblance to normal flavor after being harvested at any time after they are as much as 2 to 3 inches long: separation from the plant causes initiation of all ripening processes. However, the greener the fruit is harvested the slower these processes will be. Few of the ripening changes proceed well in banana fruits left to ripen on the tree: starch remains high and sugar consequently lower than in fruit ripened off the tree. Bananas shipped to this country are harvested "three-fourths full". This means that three fourths of the bananas have filled out and do not have the predominant ribs on the sides of the fruit. (When a banana is green and immature it has several obvious ribs down the length of the fruit. As the banana matures the ribs become less obvious.) Bananas need exposure to a naturally occurring gas called ethylene in order to ripen properly. Homeowners can "gas" their own bananas by placing them in an airtight plastic bag with several apples, which naturally emit the gas.

So, yes, commercial growers do harvest bananas more quickly, but it is at the cost of fruit quality.

The following is the only other relevant discussion I could find on ripening time, from the California Rare Fruit Growers website:

Fruit Harvest: Stalks of bananas are usually formed in the late summer and then winter over. In March they begin "plumping up" and may ripen in April. Occasionally, a stalk will form in early summer and ripen before cold weather appears. The fruit can be harvested by cutting the stalk when the bananas are plump but green. For tree-ripened fruit, cut one hand at a time as it ripens. If latter is done, check stalk daily as rodents can eat the insides of every banana, from above, and the stalk will look untouched. Once harvested the stalk should be hung in a cool, shady place. Since ethylene helps initiate and stimulate ripening, and mature fruit gives off this gas in small amounts, ripening can be hastened by covering the bunch with a plastic bag. Plantains are starchy types that are cooked before eating.

Bananas will, of course, bloom and fruit whenever they feel like it, also dependent upon varietal differences. My dwarf Namwah is just beginning to fruit now, despite consistent nighttime temps in the 40s with a handful to the mid 30s over the past few weeks! I also have a fruiting Ice Cream (as well as dwarf Brazilian and California Gold) which is about eight weeks old at this point. The dwarf Brazilian started in June so I'll cut it off in three or four weeks, but the CalGold and Ice Cream will have to stay on through the winter.

I have a fuzzy memory about this and can't recall where I read it, but I seem to remember that Ice Cream is an exception that should be left on the plant until it starts to form black marks on the fruit skin to signal optimal ripeness before the finishing stage in your garage or closet.

Hope this helps.

Bruce C.

    Bookmark   November 6, 2006 at 1:51AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
lbbanana_man(Long Beach CA)

My experience is that it depends when the bananas come out. I had one bunch that came out in june and i cut it down two weeks ago (October). Pretty fast, I'd say. I also have some more bunches that came out a short time ago, and with winter coming up (supposedly; it was 90 degrees yesterday and today!) i don't expect those bananas to ripen until next May.

It depends on the location where the bananas are grown. Even in one area such as Long Beach there are hundreds of micro climates that will affect grown.

By the way, "tissue cultures"? If your bananas are in need of that much labor or care, try something else. Or if you want that much work, orchids would be my suggestion...

    Bookmark   November 7, 2006 at 8:38PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

How are we, the cold zone growers, supossed to get bananas then? Will the flower or baby nanas fall off when it's time to pot them and bring them inside?

    Bookmark   November 11, 2006 at 2:27PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
bcfromfl(z8a NW FL)

For cooler-zone growers, my suggestion would be to leave the plant in a large pot all year-'round so that it could be moved indoors without damaging roots. (Heavy as sin -- get a hand truck!) There are some excellent dwarf varieties, but they still top out at six to eight feet, with leaves ten to twelve feet.

The most compact "fruiter" I've seen is my California Gold, but the fruit on mine won't be ready until March or April, so I can't vouch for the taste -- although it's supposed to be good. The trunk(s) seem to max out around 5 or 5-1/2 feet, and the leaves arch downward instead of adding significantly more height by standing up. Very prolific, too, with lots of pups.

The question in this thread was about the ice cream variety, which needs to grow much too large to fruit to be kept in a pot. You can overwinter just about any variety by digging it up, and I have heard of fruit making it through the winter on the plant stored horizontally in a dark place. The plant was placed back in the ground and apparently the fruit continued where it left off -- but I'm a bit skeptical of the ultimate yield and quality of the fruit when stressed this way. There are several logistical problems with moving a banana plant onto its side when fruiting, as you don't want to twist or "kink" the inflorescence so it damages it in any way. They're heavy, and would probably require two or three people moving it gingerly. Another problem is crushing the trunk with your hands just by the weight of the plant. A lot of damage and bruising will limit the plant's ability to recover and continue "feeding" the fruit.

That said, banana growers up north continue to come up with novel ideas and methods to enjoy the hobby. Don't necessarily take my words as gospel, and instead find what works for you. Individual varieties perform differently in cooler weather, so just because one doesn't work out quite right for you doesn't mean that another wouldn't be perfect.

Bruce C.

    Bookmark   November 13, 2006 at 1:14AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Ok bob3, it's been 4 months now. What's the scoop?

    Bookmark   February 5, 2007 at 4:07PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

These Dwarf Cavendish bananas went from bud to fruit in just over three months. It would have been sooner, but the bud formed in February when it was ever so chilly! At one point I actually considered putting on shoes! Some people on this forum claim you need six months, but they are passing off their experience as the "only" experience a grower can have. We
progressives call them Bananagelicals! In South Florida you too can get fast bananas! Just don't forget to add lots of water!

    Bookmark   December 4, 2013 at 8:41PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Though ripe, the banana skin never turned yellow.
Some bananas are like that. And they were sweeeet!
And in less than 4 months. Call it 3 1/2 months.

    Bookmark   December 5, 2013 at 12:52AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

How funny that the banana's in the backyard have a growers like sticker/label on them. The blue triangle..

    Bookmark   August 19, 2014 at 5:03PM
Sign Up to comment
More Discussions
yellow and brown edges on banana leaves
Hello all, I have a dwarf cavendish banana plant which...
ice cream banana tree
i have had the bananas for a few months.. dont seem...
Banana plant is dying, what is wrong?
Hello all! I bought this banana plant a couple of months...
Thinking about buying a dwarf edible banana tree.
Hello everyone. I'm thinking about purchasing a dwarf...
Prepping the soil for banana plants
Hello, I have a nice space for about 2-3 dwarf Apple...
Sponsored Products
Area Rug: Elegant Motif Green/Cream 3' 3" x 5' 3"
Home Depot
Bruck | Bolero Sconce
$338.25 | YLighting
X-Large Bubble Chandelier - PELLE
$3,400.00 | HORNE
Knoll | Unupholstered Bertoia Side Chair, Outdoor
Campania International Williamsburg Jefferson Cast Stone Pedestal For Urns and S
$499.99 | Hayneedle
Hand-tufted Royal Taj Aqua Wool Rug (3'6 x 5'3)
People viewed this after searching for:
© 2015 Houzz Inc. Houzz® The new way to design your home™