Here’s what I was going to write: Don’t toss your banana peels into the Green Bin (or even the compost pile). Instead, chop them up and sprinkle them around your roses, to give the roses a good, organic snack of potassium. I cut mine into bite-sized pieces and apply directly to the soil. The peels soon turn black, as banana peels do, and become invisible.
And here’s the reason I was going to write it: I was taught – and it seems to be the common wisdom – that potassium (along with phosphorus) promotes flowering. However…
When Googling for a link to provide more scientific detail, I came across this article, The Potassium Myth, on Adam Dimech’s website The Story of Flowers. Dimech, with a PhD in Horticultural Science from the University of Melbourne, nixes everything I’ve understood about the relationship of potassium to flowering.
While it is an essential micronutrient [oops, that should be macronutrient] for all vegetative beings (it’s the K in the N-P-K ratio of most balanced fertilizers), according to Dimech, “Potassium has an important role regulating water and nutrient movement in plant cells,” but has nothing to do with flowering.
Live and learn. Still, banana peels are an excellent source of potassium, which is essential for plant health. And when sprinkled around the plants, they lend that nutrient directly to the soil, along with their organic matter. So I’ll probably continue to feed my roses bananas. Besides, sometimes the tales told by those proverbial old wives can confound the logic of science.