After a lot of messing about I've finally decided to say 'good bye' to my Bananas.
They are very tasty yet the effort involved in growing and harvesting them is just too much for we old boilers.
Yesterday the stem with half-mature fruit crashed to the ground. I had propped it with a scissor-prop. In the wind, the stem was moving to and fro and it moved once too often and out came the prop. The already-bent stem was weighed down with the bunch and I had removed the two lower hands to lighten the load, but to no avail.
Creeeaakkk - crashhhh. Silence.
Each time there has been a bunch on, the stem has given way. Either it's a weakness in dwarf Ducasse or I have not grown them right. The stems are quite sturdy and look as though they'd hold up much more than a few fruit. But no, down they come. They never bother to wait until the fruit is fully ripe, either. The one fully-ripe bunch we harvested last year (their first year of cropping) was being held up by the fence. Had it not been, I doubt we'd have had ripe fruit on the plant.
So since neither of us are prepared to shinny up a ladder to pick the fruit, nor to fell a 15 foot stem to harvest Lady Fingers, Bananas and we have parted company. Permanently.
Room for new fruit trees. Should we live so long!
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