We Germans love bananas: we ate more than eleven kilos per capita in 2018/19. We usually throw away the peel, but it can be very useful in the garden and on the balcony: For these plants, banana peel is a real treat as fertilizer!
More than 1.2 million tons of bananas are imported to Germany every year. This makes it the tropical fruit we eat most – far ahead of avocados, pineapples, and kiwis – and the most popular fruit after the apple. While we humans enjoy pulp, the banana peel is suitable as a fertilizer for various plants.
The banana peel is packed with nutrients
Because not only the fruit itself, but also the skin contains valuable minerals: above all potassium, but also, for example, phosphorus and magnesium as well as sodium and sulfur. However, since the important nitrogen is only available in small quantities, banana peels should ideally be used in addition to other fertilizers as a supplier of potassium and magnesium.
With banana peels as fertilizer, you are not only doing something good for the plants: you avoid waste and chemicals – and without spending a cent extra. Important: only use organic bananas, because conventional bananas are very often treated with fungicides.
Banana peel as a fertilizer for flowering and fruiting plants
Banana peel fertilizer is suitable for both ornamental and crop plants. Above all, plants that have rich flowers or produce fruit love the additional nutrient boost. Some examples:
Fertilize roses with banana peels: the potassium in the peel strengthens the plants, improves the moisture balance, acts against pests, and makes the rose hardier. The phosphorus it contains promotes the growth and fullness of the flowers.
Banana peel as fertilizer for orchids: The exotic flowers are very sensitive – but you can fertilize them well with banana peels. The ingredients help the plant to bloom, but it should be fed less than too much.
Tomatoes fertilize with banana peels: Tomatoes are heavy consumers, they need a lot of nutrients – including potassium. Additionally fertilizing them with banana peel has a positive effect on fruit formation and aroma.
Banana peel as fertilizer for cucumbers: Cucumbers also have a high nutrient requirement so that the fruit can thrive. Banana peels are perfect for top-up fertilizer in July.
The fertilizer made from banana peels is also suitable for flowering plants such as geraniums and fuchsias as well as for vegetables such as zucchini, pumpkin, or carrots – always as an extra portion of nutrients.
It’s so easy to make fertilizer from banana peels
For garden plants, put the bowl in the bed; liquid fertilizer is better for potted or balcony plants. Therefore, the shells must be prepared in different ways.
Dried banana peels as fertilizer for the bed:
- Cut or chop the peels into pieces.
- Dry in an airy, warm place.
- Avoid moisture, otherwise, the shell will become moldy.
- Work dry pieces into the soil around the roots.
In the spring, coarser pieces of dried banana peels can also act as a slow-release fertilizer in addition to the mulch.
Banana peels as liquid fertilizer for balcony or house plants:
- Crush banana peel as above.
- Pour one liter of boiling water over about 100 grams.
- Leave overnight.
- Strain through the sieve.
- Dilute the brew in a ratio of 1:5 with water.
- Water plants with it.
Due to the low nitrogen content, over-fertilization is not possible. Nevertheless, the banana peel should be used carefully as a fertilizer, especially for sensitive plants such as orchids.