Commercially grown bananas that are cultivated specifically for consumption do not have seeds. Over time, they have been modified to have three sets of genes instead of two (triploid) and produce no seeds.
If you want to grow banana plants from seed, be aware that the resulting fruit will not be like those you buy at the grocers. They will contain seeds and, depending upon the variety, might be so large that the fruit is difficult to get to.
Bananas grown from seed are normally for ornamental purposes, we do however offer a few varieties that will produce edible bananas ( with seeds of course ), and they have a wonderful flavor superior to store bananas.
Bananas are one of the more difficult seeds to germinate in terms of time and effort required, especially compared to vegetable and flower seeds most gardeners are familiar with, but they can be germinated at a decent rate if one is diligent.
The first thing to understand is that banana seed take a long time to germinate! Nature has built in natural germination inhibitors to insure they do not germinate in the wild too soon.
We have been germinating banana seeds in our germination trials for over 25 years. The normal germination range in our greenhouse trials varies from 1 to 6 months. We have had some varieties germinate in just a few weeks, only to have the same variety take several months during the next germination trial, you cannot predict how long they will take to germinate.
The basic things to remember if you are germinating banana seeds are:
1. Always soak seeds before sowing. We recommend 24-48 hours.
2. Use a well draining soil mix. A mix that holds water will rot the seeds in place.
3.Soil temperature must be at least 68 degrees or warmer for part of the day. But, seeds need alternating temperatures for germinating. We found that just putting a heating mat under the seeds and leaving temperature constant was not nearly as effective as heating the soil for a few hours a day, then allowing it to cool.
4. Keep soil damp, but not wet! Wet soil will rot seeds quickly. Placing the seed tray inside a plastic bag is a good way to keep moisture constant.
5. Be very, very patient. Seeds can easily take several months and in most cases will.
AW24 Thailand Black Stem Banana ( Musa balbisiana atia )
Please click on this photo to see the large image that details the wonderful color of the stalks!
This is a wonderful, fast growing banana with tremendous ornamental appeal. The picture shows 2 year old plants started from seed growing on one of our bayou properties on the Gulf Coast. The more exposure to sunlight, the darker the stem gets. Will grow to a massive 18 feet or taller outside, or can be grown in a container where growth will be limited by container size. Very cold hardy, probably down to 15 degrees if mulched heavy, and loves hot, hot weather as well!
IP320 Dwarf Chinese Banana ( Musa acuminata dwarf )
This banana is grown not for their fruit but for their ornamental foliage that lends an exotic and tropical aura to the home or the garden. Musa acuminata is a dwarf variety that typically grows to about 4 to 6 feet tall. Extremely suitable for containers or gardens, it makes a much more manageable plant than other species.
The fruits are about 5 to 6 inches long, which are smaller than the common desert banana. They should be allowed to fully ripen before eating, and of course contain seeds.
RLP024 Mula Banana ( Musa muluensis )
This spectacular banana from the lowlands in Sarawak on the Island of Borneo produces clustering pseudostems to about 13 ft. tall. The arching inflorescence holds about 6 hands of finger-long fruits and a pendulous red or brownish male bud. Closely related to M. textilis, it does best with tropical conditions but is unknown in cultivation so far.
NW67 Darjeeling Banana ( Musa sikkimensis hookeri )
Wow! A rare and little known large banana species, new to
cultivation, that sports a massive pseudo-trunk to 4,5m (14ft)
tall and 45cm (18in.) in diameter., tinged with red, and purple
new leaves and leaf-midribs. A percentage of plants even
exhibits beautifully dark red mottled leaves. The Darjeeling
Banana is very hardy to cold (i.e. in the sense of Musa basjoo)
coming, as it does, from mountain forests up to 2000m (6000ft)
in the Himalayas of NE-India. First trials outdoors in the US,
Britain, Germany and Switzerland have shown an excellent
resistance to cold and frost. Like all bananas, it is extremely
fast growing, given rich soil and an abundance of water. The
fruits have a sweetish pulp but are hard and contain a few
large seeds. An absolute novelty that shows great promise as an
ornamental for the temperate as well as the cooler tropical
garden. We think this plant that has more potential than any
other cold tolerant Musa in cultivation at the moment.
Z2093 Cold Hardy Chinese Dwarf Banana ( Musella
Musella lasiocarpa is an exciting banana relative that comes
from high altitudes (to frosty 2800m / 9200ft!) in the Yunnan
province in China. The maximum height of the plant is only
about 1.5m / 5ft, half of which is a very stout, conical trunk,
topped by a crown of handsome, slightly glaucous, broad leaves.
From early age, the rhizome produces many suckers. The
"flower", which is big and bright yellow, appears in its second
year, and grows upright at the top of the trunk. As the
inflorescence grows in size, tiny 'bananas' begin to appear
under each bract which curls back to reveal the fruits.
Unfortunately inedible, the 2" long bananas each contain dozens
of small, shiny jet black seeds. The seed requires cool
stratification (abt. 5°C) but then germinates easily, and
subsequent seedling growth is as you might expect, very fast.
Musella appreciates heavy watering and feeding and a place in
full sun. It will flourish in all climates from cool tropical
down to temperate, where it will be found to be root hardy,
enduring even cold winters with its underground rhizome, just
like the well known "Hardy Banana", Musa basjoo. It also makes
a perfect conservatory plant which will be a true conversation
piece that certainly will not outgrow its location.
SF174 Royal Sweet Banana ( Musa paradisiaca royalii )
According to our grower in Brazil, this is one of the best seeded bananas for eating fresh ( but it will have seeds of course ). A fast grower and yields large "bunches", requires same maturing time as other bananas.
2050 Thomson's Edible Banana ( Musa thomsonii )
A subtropical species native to the Himalayas in Bhutan and
northeastern India. Its pseudostems can reach a height of up to
15 feet. The fruits are sweet but have seeds. The new leaves often have a red flush on the reverse side.
Rather cold hardy for an edible variety, should survive down to zone 7b.
Z1810 Edible Ornamental Banana ( Musa
An unusual type of ornamental banana that produces large,
edible bananas, but the fruit is full of large black seeds and
is not raised commercially for this reason. Can be raised in
large tubs inside or zone 9 and higher outside. Inside, it
rarely grows over 6 ft. tall, but can reach 10 ft. or more
W255 Burmese Blue Banana ( Musa itinerans )
This is a good cooking banana as well as a beautiful ornamental plant, best suited for zones 9-10 outside, or patio tubs in cooler zones. An exquisite new species of musa from a origin of Burma, it's bananas are shiny 6" to 8" in length with a pinkish-purple haze giving them the appearance of iridescent blue. A short growing spp. 8' to 10' with a beautiful golden yellow trunk. 14 to 16 bananas per hand, leaves are lightly pleated with light burgundy purple on the undersides and darker throughout it's midribs when leaves are young. It is used medicinally and for food in many cultural tribes of Indonesia. Heavily seeded. Very rare and one of a kind!
RLP081 Dwarf Indian Banana ( Musa mannii )
An ornamental dwarf banana from India with thin, blackish
pseudostems that reach 60 to 120 cm (2 to 4 ft.) tall, and
spreading leaves with red midribs. The beautiful purplish pink
flowers are held upright among the leaves. Musa mannii adapts
well to both tropical and warm temperate climates and will grow
best in a protected spot in filtered sun or shade. A good tub
plant for cooler areas.
A note from one of our customers:
( "I was astonished when i recieved my seeds today. I
expected it to take at least a week to get here. You have a
very good service and i hope you stay in business for a long
time...If im ordering seeds, its going to be from you."
Thanks, A. Hill
2742 Cheeseman's Banana ( Musa cheesmani )
A nice addition to the ornamental banana line. A vigorous,
large, wild banana from Northeastern India. The pseudostems are
densely clustering, dark reddish brown, with a waxy white bloom
towards the leaf stalk. The leaf is bright green above with a
pale midrib and grayish below with a conspicuous purple brown
Price per pack: $2.95
Z2306 Velvet Banana ( Musa velutina )
Good container type of banana with dark green leaf blades to 3
ft. Produces erect spikes of white flowers, followed by softly
hairy, pink fruit. Good for zone 8-10 and higher outside.
Z2007 Balbisiana Banana ( Musa balbisiana )
Obscure but exciting 'new' Banana from North-east India, the
Musa balbisiana is perhaps one of the progenitors of the
commercial banana. It grows at some altitude so may tolerate
cool conditions and a little frost, but its main characteristic
is its huge flower. As with others in the genus, rich soil is
required for maximum growth together with plenty of fertilizer
and an adequate supply of water. Given these and some summer
warmth, it is almost dangerously fast growing!
Z2115 Giant Nepal Banana ( Ensete glaucum )
This exciting but little-known banana relative is also known as
Musa nepalensis and Ensete giganteum, hinting at the plants
giant size. It grows in China (Yunnan 800-1100m a.s.l.), Nepal,
India, Burma, Thailand and possibly also in Tibet, Indonesia,
Malaysia and Papua New Guinea. It has a thick, waxy and blue,
solitary trunk, huge bluish leaves up to 10ft/3m long, and a
huge nodding banana-producing inflorescence. It is extremely
fast growing and so requires a good supply of fertilizer and
water and is best planted in rich soil. In cold climates it
would make an astonishing bedding plant during the Summer.
Z2825 Ethiopian Banana ( Ensete ventricosum )
An evergreen perennial growing to 18 feet tall.
It is hardy to zone 10 and is frost tender. The flowers are hermaphrodite (have both male and female organs). This massive banana whose trunk can reach three feet in diameter is a real botanical curiosity. It is unbelievably fast growing and has carmine red undersides to the ribs of its huge leaves. It can be used as a summer bedding plant in cooler climates and can be grown in large tubs in warm greenhouses.
2204 Giant Yunnan Banana ( Musa itinerans Gigantea )
A very large and extremely fast growing wild banana from the
mountain forests of southern Yunnan, China. Its reddish
pseudostems can reach a diameter of more than 50 cm (20 in.)
and a height of 12 m (40 ft.). The purplish fruits are popular
with monkeys. Musa itinerans displays good root hardiness and
will thrive under the same conditions as the legendary Musa
basjoo and M. sikkimensis.
New! Jim's Plant Growth Stimulator for Banana
Jim has developed this product through years of testing on his
farms. This natural, environmentally safe solution will produce
amazing results, producing vigorous plants and larger fruits.
We highly recommend you do you own trial test ( i.e. spray one
plant with solution, next to a plant not sprayed with solution
over the length of a growing season ) to fully appreciate how
effective this product is.
This is a two part water soluble product that should be mixed
14.75cc of each part ( we provide measuring spoon with solution } to one gallon of water and sprayed onto the foliage of the
banana plants. It contains Food Grade
( produced by nature ) Gibberellic Acid
( a natural plant growth
hormone ), B1 and other plant
vitamins, plant hormones
, ( made from natural sources )
(B), Copper (Cu), Iron (Fe), Manganese (Mn), Molybdenum (Mo),
Sulfur (S) and Zinc (Zn) plus a natural detergent based
"sticker" that makes the product stick to the leaves until
absorbed by the plant.
This mix will make 16 gallons of solution.
Facts from the California Rare Fruit Growers