Item Details

Title: Banana Root System: towards a better understanding for its productive management

Date Published: 2003
Author/s: David W. Turner and Franklin E. Rosales, editors
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The deterioration of the banana root system and its effect on production is due to climatic, edaphic
(physical and chemical) and biological factors. There are two kinds of root deterioration processes: 1) a
fast one with accelerated collapse of the root system (days to months) due to site specific characteristics
such as limited effective depth of soil, very high sand, gravel or clay content, high water table, and high
soluble salt and sodium content; and, 2) a slow and gradual collapse which is due to the degradation
of soil physical and chemical conditions, deterioration of soil biological activity, inefficient drainage
(design, construction, management and maintenance) and poor crop management practices (disease
control, nematodes, insects and weeds). The interaction between rainfall and topography ranks among
the main climatic factors that can cause a fast or gradual collapse of the banana root system. On the
other hand, corm rot (due to several causes), nematodes, and decrease in the soil biological activity are
identified among the most important biological factors