Unfortunately I have had to destroy my banana patch.
The patch of plants in my backyard was a venerable Keck lineage, starts passed down from one employee to another over the decades. They were the treasured apple bananas so popular in the islands.
I long ago lost count of how many bunches this patch produced, so many small bananas eaten or shared. The little tart tasting apple bananas are an island delicacy. From fresh to dried, or in smoothies we enjoyed this tropical treat from our own yard.
Banana Bunchy Top Virus (BBTV) stunts the plants, creating a bundle of small leaves at the top of the stalk and stopping fruit growth. The virus has been making its way around the island for years, finally reaching our neighborhood.
The recommended treatment? None. Destroy the plants, spray any emerging stalk with Roundup, let the mat lie dead for at least six months. Then you can replant.
I will be looking for a virus resistant cultivar to replace these bananas. Hopefully there will be home grown bananas again in the house.