Banana propagation: traditional techniques.New technologies and innovations

Abstract The different propagation systems for the banana: conventional or by tissue culture are reviewed. Conventional propagation, mainly using suckers, whole rhizomes or bits are still in use for familiar plantings or in farms for local markets in many tropical countries, while vitroplants are the rule in modern commercial banana cultivation. After examining the main morphological and developmental characteristics of the banana plants and a short description of the structures required for the propagation of bananas two main subjects are examined: conventional propagation and micropropagation. In this last section the different systems of micropropagation; Propagation by organogenesis through conventional propagation in semisolid culture media and the more modern systems of micropropagation by somatic embryogenesis and by bioreactors are discussed with special attention to the culture media and illumination required for the production of tissue culture banana plants. The aspects of hardening, acclimatization and field transplant of vitroplants are discussed at the end.