SHOP BY DEPARTMENT
Houzz Logo Print
cagold_gw

California Gold

CaGold
17 years ago

In case anyone is interested. I have some real nice California gold rhizomes that I'll let go a a very reasonable midwinter price.

If interested... tropic2tropical (at) hotmail.com

( don't forget to replace the (at) with an @ in the email address.)

Jeff

Comments (20)

  • dirt_dew
    17 years ago

    I am interested but it will be 3 months before I could plant it out. Do you know what the A B classification is?

  • CaGold
    Original Author
    17 years ago

    Dirt... I don't know for sure.... My guess is that they are in the same family as Bluggo, Cardaba, Ice Cream, Orinoco etc... So what ever their classification they are the same.

    jeff

  • tropfruit
    17 years ago

    This post belongs more in the exchange forum. And what is a "very reasonable midwinter price?" I've seen these things go for something like fifty or sixty dollars on ebay. I felt sorry for those poor suckers who paid those ridiculous prices.

  • joereal
    17 years ago

    How about ae-ae and other non-red variegated bananas, they can sometimes go as high as $1000, the ae-ae starts at $99, and it isn't even close to the tenth tastiest banana.

    Prices are not ridiculuous for everyone who is above average knowledgeable in the availability and rarity of the species versus the demand, it also depends upon what the market will bear, it is not imposed on people, you are not forced to buy it, this is a free speech forum, free enough for you to say ridiculuous, but have you done your fair homework research to reach such a dramatic conclusion?

    I don't agree with the market myself. I have been giving away for free some California Gold pups and other bananas for those people who have trekked all the way to our house when I happen to have available pups to dispose of. It is not worth my time to create a web page in eBay auction, manage the auction, follow up with questions, notify the winners, wait for the payment, dig up the pups, clean it up, package it, make a trip to the post office, pay the post office, follow up with emails. No not even for $200, I can earn more than that for all the time that I will be spending, so I am not selling it through the whole 9 online yards. But will gladly do it for free or trade with a friend.

  • tropfruit
    17 years ago

    I don't disagree with you about those ridiculous variegate prices. Supply and demand, people can pay whatever they want for it. The thing is its a variegate and marketed as such. I just think that there's really no information on this California Gold. It's marketed as this incredible cold hardy edible banana. But the truth is this banana is probably no hardier than any of the other cool hardy varieties like Namwah, Orinoco, Misi Luki, Ice Cream, etc. Why pay three times the cost for it?

  • joereal
    17 years ago

    California Gold is not propagated by a lot of people, not even by super mass produced $1 tissue culture group, so it is propagated the good old pup methodology, very much like how you would do with ae-ae, and so not a lot of people auction the California Gold off. The reason why ae-ae remains ridiculuosly high is because it cannot be tissue cultured. It loses the variegation when attempted several times at tissue culture. Well, about the California Gold, as long as no one is producing it via tissue culture, it will not be as low prioced as the very cheapo cold hardy varieties that you can get now for as low as $1 per plantlet. It is still law of supply and demand. If a lot of people will sell it, then the price should go down. It should not matter if the color is black or white, plain or variegated, it is simply not readily available as the other varieties, so why should it not cost more, what happens to supply and demand logic? I think no one can argue against this fact that it is not as readily available as the others, and the three times the cost do not do justice to its current availability. But when the time comes the tissue culture hit the market, you can expect it to be the same price as the others.

    To enlighten you, based on my own experience comparing all the listed bananas you mentioned and even more than what you think you know, my own handling with California Gold is that it is consistently a fruit bearer in our zone 9, even during the record cold spells, it is able to bear fruit year after year when you maintain one biggest daughter pup. In zone 10, you should not be concerned at all with cold hardiness, so why even bother to discuss this when you cannot even test the cold hardy conditions in your own backyard? Have you got proof that it is no cold hardier than what you have listed? I have proof and experiences to say for it, in the actual colder environment than what you have. I am just one who say so, and have no financial incentives in selling off this variety, but a hope for everyone in our zone who wish to have a consistent fruit bearer in our zone. At zone 10, California Gold will not be high in my list of desirable bananas to grow, so why even bother one yourself in your zone without problems of cold like we do? That to me is truly ridiculuous.

  • joereal
    17 years ago

    Tropfruit, my apologies for the knee-jerk post above. It is true that there are no differences in the cold hardiness when you are in zone 10, all will perform more or less the same. When you're in zone 5 or below, then there are no differences either, if you get what I meant. But for us here in zone 9, there are truly differences in terms of fruiting consistently and reliably. I have carefully observed my California Gold, as well as to that with other friends, and these are truly the most reliable fruit bearer compared to other varieties that we have. I can say that the California Gold is distinctly different than Dwarf Orinoco and other similar plantain-type bananas. I would rate it's taste better than Saba or Cardaba, all very good for making tostones and other plantain type cooking. The fruit is small though, only about half that of a regular saba, but bigger than lady finger type bananas. I would rate Raja Puri to be among the best tasting, followed by Senorita (just my taste buds). I also found that the California Gold fruits are excellent for making sherry wine, truly outstanding aroma when done properly. I have other descriptions in other forums about this cultivar, having first hand experience with it myself.

    There are very few people selling this at eBay and know them quite well. Sometimes I still buy from them, like $40 for a 4-ft trunk tall California Gold, even if I have some pups, just to give as gifts to friends. The reason is that I want my friends in the Bay Area to have this banana and to have it fruit quicker too, so the price doesn't really matter that much to me. Hoping also that it would produce more pups quicker so that we can spread it more. There are also some mutations or variations in fruiting height that I have observed about this variety.

    The tissue cultured plantlets are the slowest to bear fruits, I only buy these for various backyard experimentation. So most of the time I buy corms or pups. I have 4 pups of California Gold, 2 have been reserved to give away, I retain one, and if you are interested, I can trade the one extra pup with you. Usually, for those that i do not give away or trade, I cut them at ground level to keep the main corm bigger and the next year's fruit bunch bigger.

  • CaGold
    Original Author
    17 years ago

    I agree with Joe.
    Unless you live in z9 and below there isn't much reason to spend a couple extra bucks on Cal Gold.
    My personal favorite for taste is Dwarf Brazilian.... but in my zone they just aren't reliable enough. Cal Gold is an every year producer.
    As for the prices on ebay.... supply and demand dictates that. I always started my price out at a reasonable $19.... If people don't want to bid higher... they don't have to.
    As far as my "reasonable midwinter corm prices " I don't think selling a rare banana corm for $20 is an unfair price, when I grow less that 25 extras per year. I am a backyard grower, not a business.

    BTW... Just in case you are wondering, the average price for a 2 ft tall 5 gal sized pup went for about $40.... I have sold one for $19 and one goofy bidder once gave me $175.00 away from ebay for a 4 ft tall plant that he just had to have. Would I pay $175 for a banana plant?..... No unless it was only one that would grow in my area! But if the the buyer was thinking about propagating and reselling pups ...as think he was, then I am sure he made his money back quickly.

    Myself... I have spent at least $1000 dollars over 20 years trying to find a bullet proof z9 banana. CalGold is the one that works for me.

    Jeff

  • Eggo
    17 years ago

    You guys up north have to go through a lot to get bananas to grow for you there. They grow so easily down here. I am not familiar with the area up north but does a consistently fruiting banana in the Fresno area be considered a rare thing? Thanks.

  • joereal
    17 years ago

    Fresno is quite warmer than us here in Davis. Sacramento is hotter than Davis by about 2-5 F deg during the summer due to the delta breezes. So if a banana plant blooms after end of June, then it is a wasted stalk. So blooming at the right time is also a big factor in order to harvest edible fruits that will ripen.

    If you have big numbers of plants, then it is not a rare thing. But if you have a tiny yard with limited space, then it will be a rare thing.

    Once you get the California Gold clump going, it will be year after year fruits mostly at the correct timing of bloom. Other bananas are not as consistent.

  • yellowseven
    17 years ago

    What is: "good old pup methodology". Sorry....I'm new.

  • joereal
    17 years ago

    You propagate by encouraging production of pups and then separating pups. Different varieties will have different number of pups produced per season. The inedible Chinese yellow banana has the most record number of pups produced. Whereas, the ae-ae and California Gold produces about 4 pups per year, depending on size of your mat (don't ask me what us a mat, my patience ends there :)

    In contrast, sacrifice one young banana pup (or an eye in the banana corm) for tissue culture, you can have 10,000 pups or more in just one season.

  • joereal
    17 years ago

    Technically, plants from tissue culture are called "plantlets". It has super itty bitty tiny corm and takes 3 years before they reach fruit bearing stage, but depends on variety. They are sold very cheaply at eBay, often less than $4.99 each plant. They measure the height from the tip of the roots to the tip of the longest leaf.

    On the other hand, true banana pups could sometimes take less than a year to bear fruits, depending on size of corm and height of pseudostem.

  • Eggo
    17 years ago

    Joe, thanks for the info on Northern growing.

    I bought some "plantlets" on ebay too. It definitely had to be pampered before I could plant them in the ground. A nice corm is so much better to have but more expensive, oh well, price and corm I guess its a fair tradeoff.

  • CaGold
    Original Author
    17 years ago

    Another unpleasant side effect to tissue culturing is the possibility of mutation.
    2 years ago, an experienced botany Student tried to TC some Calif Gold material that I gave him.
    He said that he had a difficult time succesfully TC'ing CalGolds and the few resulting plantlets either died or grew up different than the mother plant.
    Of course his results could have been environmental, but in my experiance a corm propagated plant is always better than one from tissue culture.
    Jeff

  • gatrops
    17 years ago

    Jeff-You are very right about the possibility of mutation occuring during tissue culturing. It does occur when bananas reproduce through the normal pupping process but at a much lower rate. According to J.C.Robinson in "Bananas and Plantains".

    "Whereas the somatic mutation rate of stable banana clones in the field is low (one or two in a million) the rate of somoclonal variation during micropropagation is much higher at 5 to 10% and even greater in some laboratories."

    There are a variety of factors that play into determining the rate of mutation one experiences in tissue culturing.

  • momo1
    17 years ago

    Hey Joe, what's a mat? : )

  • joereal
    17 years ago

    momo1, I just regained my patience, and now I can't resist answering.

    Banana corms or rhizomes, usually from the same original mother corm, grows together forming a mat or a network of dead and live rhizomes and interlocking banana roots. The bigger the mat, the more pups you are going to have, and of course, the greater the space your bananas will occupy.

    And here's the info from Unversity of Florida on why do we need to prune the banana mat:
    "Pruning the banana mat is necessary for best vegetative growth and fruit production. Allowing numerous pseudostems to grow from a single mat may lead to small bunches of low quality fruit and encourage disease development.

    A banana pseudostem produces fruit only once. After harvest, the stalk is cut off at the base and chopped into small pieces which are left on the ground and incorporated in as mulch. New pseudostems (follow-up stalks) which have been allowed to grow from the rhizome (also called a mat) will produce the next crop. For best production, there must be ample space between plants to avoid crowding and competition for water, light and nutrients.

    The number of pseudostems and their replacement is controlled by cutting off new suckers as soon as they appear. A good practice consists of having only one pseudostem flowering and fruiting, one pseudostem about half grown, and one small sucker per mat. Cutting unwanted suckers off at ground level and then gouging out as much as possible of what remains with a metal digging bar will kill the underground bud. It is important that the internal bud is killed, otherwise regrowth occurs very quickly and it takes an unnecessary amount of labor to keep suckers from growing. Though labor intensive, the cutting of dead leaves and of leaves that rub against the bunch is recommended. Removing the end of the flowering stalk which has no fruit and hangs below the last hand of bananas may speed fruit development. "

  • momo1
    17 years ago

    While I was just messin wit ya, I do thank you for the very informative post. At the plantation where I acquired most of my plants they let the mats go for about 7 years and then go in and remove the whole mess and replant it with the oldest pups. The plants always grow very nice bunches so it must be ok. They do thin the pups for resale though so the mat gets plenty of sunlight. BTW I am momoese on the other board. Mitchel

  • df1sp_arrl_net
    16 years ago

    Hi,
    I have been growing an unknown banana (found a stalk on the dump in Emma Prusch Park) for years, they look great in the summer, grow 10+ feet high, and have bloomed a few times, but never ripened. I would love to try something that actually produces fruit. Is anyone willing to provide me with a "sucker" (I am happy to do the digging of course)? I can also provide plants from my group (7-8 stalks). I am in South San Jose (408 227 6056).
    Thanks - HP

Sponsored
Loudoun Remodeling Services LLC
Average rating: 5 out of 5 stars4 Reviews
Loudoun County's Custom Kitchen & Bath Designs for Everyday Living