Tropical Fruit Forum - International Tropical Fruit Growers

Tropical Fruit => Tropical Fruit Discussion => Topic started by: chris1 on July 17, 2017, 05:03:38 PM

Title: Best dwarf banana varieties
Post by: chris1 on July 17, 2017, 05:03:38 PM
I am planning on making a trip down to Excalibur tomorrow for an Atemoya and I figured while I'm there I should pick up a banana as well. I would ideally like a dwarf variety of some kind that can stay under 6-8 feet 10 absolute maximum. I would like something that makes an excellent fruit and preferably one that fruits as often per year as possible. I don't know much about banana plants but all my research points only to the dwarf cavendish variety and Excalibur has several dwarf options so any input would be appreciated. Thanks.
Title: Re: Best dwarf banana varieties
Post by: Chupa King on July 17, 2017, 08:54:06 PM
My opinion would be a dwarf Namwa, also known as Pisang Awak. I have 35 varieties and the Namwa is one of the best.
Title: Re: Best dwarf banana varieties
Post by: merce3 on July 17, 2017, 09:08:34 PM
Dwarf Brazilian is another good one. Dwarf Red if you're in a more tropical area.
Title: Re: Best dwarf banana varieties
Post by: merce3 on July 17, 2017, 09:09:44 PM
Also can't go wrong with a FHIA-1 if you get a true one
Title: Re: Best dwarf banana varieties
Post by: bsbullie on July 17, 2017, 09:21:51 PM
I so not believe they have any Dwarf Namwa.  I love the Dwarf Red but its going to be in the 8-10 foot range (as stated, it does not like a cooler climate).

If they have any Raja Puri is a very good choice.

I would not bither with FHIA 1 aka Goldfinger.  Not a great banana.  It is more of just a commercial type..and as such,  stay away from Dwarf Cavendish (and all othwr Cavendish tyoes) and Truly Tiny.
Title: Re: Best dwarf banana varieties
Post by: beefyboy on July 17, 2017, 10:41:12 PM
a girl pushed Golfinger at Excalibur! If it produces heavily and early enough, it could be a nice backup plan. I luckily found a tiny little Pisang Raja and took it for half price at 4 inches tall. Nam Wah is about the best so far to me but I have not had Blue Java in ages.  Red Dwarf,  Raja Puri, Lacatan, Mysore, are all newly planted.  To find out what you like, you just have to compare at least 4-5 varieties min and see what wins out for your own taste.
Title: Re: Best dwarf banana varieties
Post by: bsbullie on July 17, 2017, 10:49:36 PM
a girl pushed Golfinger at Excalibur! If it produces heavily and early enough, it could be a nice backup plan. I luckily found a tiny little Pisang Raja and took it for half price at 4 inches tall. Nam Wah is about the best so far to me but I have not had Blue Java in ages.  Red Dwarf,  Raja Puri, Lacatan, Mysore, are all newly planted.  To find out what you like, you just have to compare at least 4-5 varieties min and see what wins out for your own taste.

Pisang Raja is one of my favorites,  along with the Red.

Kandrian is alao excellent.   I haven't had it in years.  I will be sending my order into Going Bananas to get one for the new yard.
Title: Re: Best dwarf banana varieties
Post by: beefyboy on July 17, 2017, 11:07:05 PM
I have seen only good things written on both of them so I wanted both. I have 8 varieties now so will find out my favs. I lean toward strong vanilla flavors myself so Blue Java and Nam Wah made be my own personal favs when its all done but I certainly wouldn't argue with these others if they produced well. The dwarf Red has my interest since I have heard it has a slight peach taste and compact size so you can put it in a protected area and micro climate of your yard. I do have the dwarf Nam Wah myself with variegated leaf, it is growing faster than all the other varieties and a beautiful plant. I rate the Dwarf Red and Dwarf Nam Wah as my best looking plants, at least so far anyway!
Title: Re: Best dwarf banana varieties
Post by: beefyboy on July 17, 2017, 11:22:45 PM
From what I have seen and heard! Dwarf Nam Wah is not going to stay under 8 ft and why worry about that? Real estate is free when growing straight up. The only worry would be cold snaps!
Title: Re: Best dwarf banana varieties
Post by: bsbullie on July 17, 2017, 11:23:44 PM
I have seen only good things written on both of them so I wanted both. I have 8 varieties now so will find out my favs. I lean toward strong vanilla flavors myself so Blue Java and Nam Wah made be my own personal favs when its all done but I certainly wouldn't argue with these others if they produced well. The dwarf Red has my interest since I have heard it has a slight peach taste and compact size so you can put it in a protected area and micro climate of your yard. I do have the dwarf Nam Wah myself with variegated leaf, it is growing faster than all the other varieties and a beautiful plant. I rate the Dwarf Red and Dwarf Nam Wah as my best looking plants, at least so far anyway!

If you like the vanilla flavor, then you should get a Praying Hands.  It too is an excellent tasting banana.
Title: Re: Best dwarf banana varieties
Post by: Dangermouse01 on July 18, 2017, 07:16:17 AM
I am planning on making a trip down to Excalibur tomorrow for an Atemoya and I figured while I'm there I should pick up a banana as well. I would ideally like a dwarf variety of some kind that can stay under 6-8 feet 10 absolute maximum. I would like something that makes an excellent fruit and preferably one that fruits as often per year as possible. I don't know much about banana plants but all my research points only to the dwarf cavendish variety and Excalibur has several dwarf options so any input would be appreciated. Thanks.

Sent you a PM.

DM
Title: Re: Best dwarf banana varieties
Post by: geosulcata on July 18, 2017, 07:39:31 AM
The dwarf Bananas we have which do well are Raja Puri (dessert banana), Dwarf Orinoco (cooking banana or eaten really ripe out of hand), Dwarf Red (delicious dessert banana, but ours take 18-24 months to fruit), dwarf Namwa (dessert banana). With all of these, if you buy a tissue culture plant, don't expect a guarantee it will be dwarf or even the correct plant. There have been mix ups with tissue cultures - whether mixing up germplasm or mutations during propagation. Ours are all around 6'. The dwarf red and dwarf Namwa seem the most notorious for growing tall after tissue culturing. Our original plant material was pups from friends. Raja Puri tissue cultured plants have been mislabeled in the past, but maybe the issue has been corrected.
Title: Re: Best dwarf banana varieties
Post by: bsbullie on July 18, 2017, 07:48:19 AM
The dwarf Bananas we have which do well are Raja Puri (dessert banana), Dwarf Orinoco (cooking banana or eaten really ripe out of hand), Dwarf Red (delicious dessert banana, but ours take 18-24 months to fruit), dwarf Namwa (dessert banana). With all of these, if you buy a tissue culture plant, don't expect a guarantee it will be dwarf or even the correct plant. There have been mix ups with tissue cultures - whether mixing up germplasm or mutations during propagation. Ours are all around 6'. The dwarf red and dwarf Namwa seem the most notorious for growing tall after tissue culturing. Our original plant material was pups from friends. Raja Puri tissue cultured plants have been mislabeled in the past, but maybe the issue has been corrected.

I think people abuse the word dwarf.  Just cause it has dwarf doesn't mean its going to stay small, its all relative.  Yes, the dwarf Namwa can get to 10 feet with no problem but compared to its taller non-dwarf which can exceed 15 feet, its a "dwarf".  The same goes for the Reds.

As to Agristarts and tissue culture mixups, I have only seen the problem with Ice Cream and Dwarf Namwa (which after the hiatus in producing the Ice Cream, problem is supposedly fixed).  Other mixups could be nursery driven...
Title: Re: Best dwarf banana varieties
Post by: beefyboy on July 18, 2017, 09:49:21 AM
That is exactly what I am hearing as far as size of both Rob!  And what you said about Praying hands, I have heard and read that also.  It seems to be a bit of a pain to separate the fruit cleanly unless you know otherwise. A very cool specimen to have in the yard, that is for sure.  I am literally amazed with the fruit quality of Nam Wah in a smoothie, I just can't see another banana beating it. I made sure to get two different sources of Blue Java, just in case.
Title: Re: Best dwarf banana varieties
Post by: geosulcata on July 18, 2017, 06:33:36 PM


I think people abuse the word dwarf.  Just cause it has dwarf doesn't mean its going to stay small, its all relative.  Yes, the dwarf Namwa can get to 10 feet with no problem but compared to its taller non-dwarf which can exceed 15 feet, its a "dwarf".  The same goes for the Reds.

As to Agristarts and tissue culture mixups, I have only seen the problem with Ice Cream and Dwarf Namwa (which after the hiatus in producing the Ice Cream, problem is supposedly fixed).  Other mixups could be nursery driven...

I have never had any of my dwarf bananas sport tall or grow over 6' or so. However, I have seen many tissue cultured dwarf namwas grow tall with a smaller psuedostem - very different growth pattern than dwarf namwas which are propagated by pups. The dwarves have psuedostems with a larger diameter. Agristarts Goldfinger is another known issue a few years ago. People now refer to that as American Goldfinger. Red Iholena is another one which swemed to have sported with the batch 18-24 months ago.
Title: Re: Best dwarf banana varieties
Post by: geosulcata on July 18, 2017, 06:38:53 PM
That is exactly what I am hearing as far as size of both Rob!  And what you said about Praying hands, I have heard and read that also.  It seems to be a bit of a pain to separate the fruit cleanly unless you know otherwise. A very cool specimen to have in the yard, that is for sure.  I am literally amazed with the fruit quality of Nam Wah in a smoothie, I just can't see another banana beating it. I made sure to get two different sources of Blue Java, just in case.

Praying Hands separates quite easily for us. It is one of our favorite tasting bananas along with other in the Saba subgroup.  It definitely not dwarf. Our other favorites are in the Maoli-Popoulu subgroup.
Title: Re: Best dwarf banana varieties
Post by: beefyboy on July 18, 2017, 08:06:57 PM
I have read on going bananas that it is firm in the middle of the fruit and can get mushy outside near the skin which does not sound good. Also some other issues related to fungal problems do to the fruit shape, which makes sense. I have not grown it and have no comment whatsoever, just reporting what I have read by a few people growing them. They rate them good but not as good as Nam Wah.
Title: Re: Best dwarf banana varieties
Post by: Chupa King on July 19, 2017, 01:20:41 AM
They are great. Bur bugs like to live in the hands while it forms. It is also very tall.
Title: Re: Best dwarf banana varieties
Post by: chris1 on July 19, 2017, 03:54:23 PM
Looks like the dwarf namwah seems to be a clear winner here.
Title: Re: Best dwarf banana varieties
Post by: gnappi on July 19, 2017, 06:20:57 PM
I don't know what mine are but the PS starts fruiting at less than 6 feet and never grow large. Also my rojo fruit at less than 6' and the PS stays around that size, but the leaves grow taller.
Title: Re: Best dwarf banana varieties
Post by: merce3 on July 19, 2017, 10:20:20 PM
Praying Hands is definitely not dwarf but it is one of the most beautiful bananas... majestic. It has wide leaves and mine is about 15'... another nice one that looks similar is pitogo. Getting away fdom dwarfs but pitogo is my favorite of all bananas.
Title: Re: Best dwarf banana varieties
Post by: bsbullie on July 19, 2017, 10:22:21 PM
Praying Hands is definitely not dwarf but it is one of the most beautiful bananas... majestic. It has wide leaves and mine is about 15'... another nice one that looks similar is pitogo. Getting away fdom dwarfs but pitogo is my favorite of all bananas.

Pitogo is the one that is shaped like golf balls?  How is the flavor?
Title: Re: Best dwarf banana varieties
Post by: merce3 on July 22, 2017, 09:49:09 PM
Praying Hands is definitely not dwarf but it is one of the most beautiful bananas... majestic. It has wide leaves and mine is about 15'... another nice one that looks similar is pitogo. Getting away fdom dwarfs but pitogo is my favorite of all bananas.

Pitogo is the one that is shaped like golf balls?  How is the flavor?

Somewhat like praying hands/Saba but more of a tropical/subacid undertone to it. It also ripens nice and evenly
Title: Re: Best dwarf banana varieties
Post by: marklee on July 25, 2017, 07:26:36 PM
The Ha'a Ha'a doesn't get very tall, maybe the fruit is about 4-6 foot above the ground, and it is very prolific.
Title: Re: Best dwarf banana varieties
Post by: chris1 on July 26, 2017, 10:42:27 AM
I can't seem to find any info on the ha'a ha'a. Google didn't help. And nobody seems to sell it.
Title: Re: Best dwarf banana varieties
Post by: bsbullie on July 26, 2017, 10:58:41 AM
I can't seem to find any info on the ha'a ha'a. Google didn't help. And nobody seems to sell it.

You could call or email Going Bananas to see if they have any for sale.  I think the height can get near 10 feet if I am not mistaken.
Title: Re: Best dwarf banana varieties
Post by: marklee on July 26, 2017, 07:22:22 PM
Yeah the top of the banana with the leaves reach at least 10 feet, but the fruit hangs at a reachable height. The fruit is also smaller and has a slight orange tint to it.
Title: Re: Best dwarf banana varieties
Post by: venturabananas on July 27, 2017, 01:42:40 AM
The Ha'a Ha'a doesn't get very tall, maybe the fruit is about 4-6 foot above the ground, and it is very prolific.

The true Ha'a Ha'a is believed to be extinct.  And banana variety mislabelling seems to be the norm.  I wonder what you have.  It would be pretty exciting if you actually had the true Ha'a Ha'a.