While on my own vanilla journey it has been really interesting for me to learn how many new vanilla growers are not given the proper training or advice on the importance of 'looping' and how to 'loop' vanilla vines correctly!
Vanilla has two root systems, aerial and ground roots, and both have an important role to play but the ground roots are the most important!
I have been asked by many new vanilla growers from around the world to give my advice on why their vine is sickly looking and not giving lush green leaves like my vines. When looking at the images they provide, the most common problem is that the looping is done incorrectly.
Looping the vanilla vine, it needs to come all the way down to the ground then covered with organic mulch material and allowed to grow up to the top of the hanging support and then down to the ground again for another loop. This needs to be done at least 3-4 times throughout the initial growing period of a new vanilla vine.
It is the ground root system and a healthy organic compost and mulch that creates a healthy and strong vine.
Check out our YouTube video on this subject: