On Friday 7th November, after three months (which at times felt like forever), I finally finished my regional work on a banana farm in Tully, Queensland.
Now that I’ve finished, I wanted to write a follow up after my first post Life on a Banana Farm.
The rest of my time on the farm was a roller coaster of highs and lows. Truth be told, there was a few times I thought I was facing the sack. This sounds a bit melodramatic but during my time on the farm, I witnessed just how ruthless they could be when it came to getting rid of and replacing backpackers at their convenience.
Not long after my first post, I found myself taken off humping, the job I most enjoyed and instead was taking out stringing.
Stringing is essentially tying next generation trees to either dead trees or sturdy baby trees so that when the bunch comes through, it doesn’t blow over in a strong wind or buckle under its own weight.
Stringing wasn’t the worst job in the world. I got pretty good at it quite quickly and it was a bonus that you could do the job outside in the sun with your music for company.
Aside from that and the odd day doing random jobs in the shed, the other job I did on a regular basis was irrigation.
Irrigation involved fixing and replacing irrigation pipe and sprinkler heads whilst also improving water pressure to ensure all of the trees were getting enough water.
Again like stringing it wasn’t a bad job, but it could get pretty boring if there was nothing that needed fixing. You also got pretty wet doing irrigation which got kind of annoying at times, especially on your feet!
I was also involved in the planting of two new paddocks. I say involved, basically all I did was drive a tractor of baby plants alongside the planting tractor so that when they ran out of plants, new trays were readily available.
This was probably the easiest job I did on the farm!
Looking back, the three months did go pretty quickly. At times on the farm, I thought it would never end, but now that it’s over I do miss certain aspects of it.
I was lucky enough to strike up a good rapport with one of the supervisors, which enabled me to spend the majority of my last week out humping so I could take some pictures and videos to show family and friends back home.
I’ve heard stories from other types of regional work and based on my own experiences, I’d say you could do much much worse than to work on a banana farm and would recommend it to backpackers looking to get their second year visa!
Now that my regional work is done, I’m currently travelling down the East Coast of Australia, where I hope to put out more regular posts, which don’t talk about bananas!