Plantain and banana are both herbaceous plants of the Musa family. Much is said about their origin that I find it hard to pin point where it actually originated from but am most excited it’s grown everywhere in my country, in fact we have more plantain and banana than we have weeds in our farms. Pardon my gross exaggeration but truth is, plantain and banana really do well in West and Central Africa. They are thought to have originated from New Guinea. In 1469, the Portuguese recorded their discovery of the banana in West Africa.

Plantain Plantation.

Bananas are cultivated in nearly all tropical regions of the world, and is a staple starchy food for 80 million people and important source of income. Most often, people find it difficult to differentiate between the two. Plantain resemble banana but are longer in length, have a thicker skin, and contain more starch. They are usually cooked and not eaten raw unless they are very ripe. Because these crops do not produce seeds, vegetative propagation is the preferred form of reproduction.

In a one day workshop organized by the Ministry of Agriculture and rural Development and the farmers in Buea, farmers were taught how to increase their yield via vegetative propagation.

Mr. Elame

Sub Delegate Of Agriculture and Rural Development talking to farmers.

In Cameroon, a sucker of plantain cost 500frs. For a farmer cultivating plantain and banana in large scale, this is pretty expensive. A cheaper and most efficient technique is vegetative propagation, a technique which allows a single sucker to have up to 15 plantlets. With vegetative propagation, false decapitation of a sucker induces the sprouting of 8-15 new suckers. The technique is carried out on plantain that hasn’t flowered yet; usually 5-6 months old plantain or banana. The size of the sucker determines the number of plantlets to sprout.
The great thing about this technique is, the propagator and the nursery can be in separate locations. The propagator can be of any size but the ideal length of a propagator is 4meters and width of 1.5meters. This makes it easy for one to stretch across while working. In 4 by 1.5 propagator, 100 medium suckers can be placed with each sucker giving a minimum of 15 plantlets. After propagation, it takes atmost 3weeks to see the plantlets shoot from the sucker and 3 months to have the suckers ready for planting.
In order to have a very good yield, it is necessary to respect the planting distance and maintain the farm during its growth period. The ideal planting distance is 3 meters. Maintenance requires that you control weed, prone the plantain(or banana) and use pesticides and fungicides. Fungi and pest affect the leaves and stem of the plantain and prevent nutrient uptake from the soil thus affecting the size of the banana or plantain.

Testimonies from farmers who have practiced vegetative propagation proof is a technique worth using. Mr Moise, a young graduate from the university who attended the workshop in 2011 gave a testimony of how useful the method has been to him. He propagated 150 suckers and got over a 1000. Respecting the right planting distance and doing the necessary maintenance, he is very pleased with his farm.


Mr Moises’ farm in Foumbot.

According to FAO estimate, more than 100 million tons of banana and plantain were produced worldwide in 2007. Uganda is the largest producer of banana and plantain in sub-Saharan Africa (SSA), followed by Rwanda, Ghana, Nigeria, and Cameroon.
The Trans-African highway network project will influence trade across Africa a great deal. Farmers will have to increase their production in order to meet up with demand. The vegetative propagation technique is quite a cheap and easy way to increase yield for plantain and banana.


  1. Thank you for this great revelation. I thank God for a country like yrs that loves her farming sector. YOUR theaching had couceled my plan to visit LIMBE and NGUSI. Now l can enjoy my planti from my own farm. from yr neigbor u u udo_NIGERIA

  2. nice reading your publications

  3. Its the best spacing that should be recommended.
    It conforms with my recommendations to farmers.
    (Nihort Ibadan)

  4. I am happy to see these, but from my last workshop ARUSHA, TANZANIA on BANANA BUNCHY TOP DISEASE (BBTD) and the virus BANANA BUNCHY TOP VIRUS (BBTV) in Sub Shara Africa. A way for was to let the farms know of this disease and how to prevent it.

  5. Hi am really love your good work on how you work on your plantain , using one plantain to produced many plantain , please i am interested in your work because am about to start a plantation farm , so pleas i need more info , thanks

  6. Hi Ferdinard, thank you for visiting our site and liking our work. With respect to you starting up a plantain farm, we will appreciate you sending us a mail directly to with specifications on what information you want us to assist you with. Hope to read from you soon.

  7. Please I want to know more about plantation farming especially the multiplication of suckers, I would require your mentorship, Thanks

  8. Hi am so happy for the good work you are doing , read your profile and i saw how you people are using one plantain sucker to make more plantlets so after you have produce the little sucker how long do the plantain sucker takes to grow eatable plantain ,what kind of land do plantain do well

    , , am interested in your work and one of my friends told me that , farmers use Chicken or Rabbit manure to grow plantain , i grow Rabbit and Chicken and i presently have close to 100 Rabbit and i grow chicken every month and sell them ,so i always have Chicken and Rabbit manure, I have a little land about 100sq and i want to start a plantain plantation farm, so please i need more info ,
    thanks and hope to read from you soon ,
    Ndongo Vincent

  9. Thank you for the good work you are doing,please Iwant enter plantain farming ,could you please give the details about plantain farming. Especially the plantain suckers mutiplication, the methods of nursing it ,how to cut it and any other necessary techineans

  10. Dear James, thank you for visiting our work and commenting on it. Unfortunately we are not very equipped with information on plantain farming at the moment but we can help you with information on plantain multiplication. Because most contacts have expressed interest on plantain multiplication, we are preparing a blog to provide you with detailed information on how to do your own plantain multiplication.Please do stay in contact and you will be having it soon. Thanks.

  11. Thanks for this info. Am a fresh university graduate planing to invest in plantation agriculture. I would love to get a full details of how to start this plantain multiplication business.



  13. I love agriculture and i want some one to help me to study more of it

  14. I love agriculture so i appriciating my country

  15. Tnx so Much. I think plantain would be the best option to go for in increasing my financial status. I am indeed convinced by your narrative essay on both establishment, maintenance, as well as the profit margin. So being an undergraduate, i would want to finish my programme before venturing into this, but it is a most i do it. I am passionate about. Thanks once again.

  16. Uո sérieuх bravo à l’auteur de cе site

  17. Am so greatful for the work you are doing but I want to know what comprises the propagator

  18. Un monumental remerciement à l’administrateur de ce site

  19. a student working on plantain multiplication using PIF technique in Ebolowa.the aim of my work is to study the Agronomic behavior of 5 plantains varieties,i want to know more about PIF if there is a specialist of this technic.

  20. Pls what do u mean by’ to prone the plantain’ then the reason for that?

  21. What do u mean ‘to prone the banana’ and what’s the reason behind it?

  22. This is a job well done, keep up with the spirit.Could you please have an idea on pepper farming in Cameroon? Will love every information pertaining to this.Thanks.

  23. Je me permets de poster ce petit com simplement pour congratuler le

  24. i have followed yr program on net and i am moved by the number of people who need technical assistance from you people especially on plantain, pepper multiplication and cultivation and even other crops like cassava cocoa palms yam maize citrus etc.Do you people have an experience trained technician ?.I am available if you people are interested.Greetings from Rudolf

  25. Your work is nice, keep up the good work.

  26. thanks a lot for this piece,

    please kindly send to me more information on how to carry out this vegetative propagation with high degree of success. Thank you Sir

  27. thanks a lot for this piece,

    please kindly send to me more information on how to carry out this vegetative propagation with high degree of success. thank you Sir

  28. Wow!! Am a young lady interested in plaintain and cassava farm I’ll love to learn more.

  29. This is a very good write up. Thanks for enlightening prospective farmers.

  30. thanks for reading your publication, sincerely it has help to make me understand more about the propagation technique. Atleast I can effectively start and manage my own plantain farm.

  31. Thanks for the eye opener. I am a Nigerian living and farming in Nigeria. How can i get Plantain suckers and how much do each go for?

  32. what is proning of plantain, how is it done and what is the essence of proning?

  33. I thank you guys for you support, and encouragements in starting up agricultural business.
    My challenge is that I have a land in Lagos Nigeria,and I need investors to come and invest on farm produce on the said land.

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