Banana Stuff


Banana is the common name for herbaceous plants of the genus Musa and for the fruit they produce. They are native to the tropical region of Southeast Asia, and are likely to have been first domesticated in Papua New Guinea.[1] Today, they are cultivated throughout the tropics.[2]

Banana plants are in the family Musaceae. They are cultivated primarily for their fruit, and to a lesser extent to make fiber and as ornamental plants. As the banana plants are normally tall and fairly sturdy, they are often mistaken for trees, but their main or upright stem is actually a pseudostem. For some species, this pseudostem can reach a height of 2–8 metres (6.6–26 ft) with leaves of up to 3.5 meters (11 ft) in length. Each pseudostem can produce a bunch of bananas, which turn yellow or sometimes red when they ripen. After fruiting, the pseudostem dies.

The banana fruit grow in hanging clusters, with up to 20 fruit to a tier (called a hand), and 3–20 tiers to a bunch. The assembly of hanging clusters is known as a bunch, or commercially as a "banana stem", and can weigh from 30–50 kilograms (66–110 lb). The fruit averages 125 grams (0.28 lb), of which approximately 75% is water and 25% dry matter. Each individual fruit (known as a banana or 'finger') has a protective outer layer (a peel or skin) with a fleshy, edible inner portion. Both skin and inner part can be eaten raw or cooked. The fruit typically has numerous strings (called phloem bundles), which run between the skin and inner part. The inner part of the common yellow dessert variety splits easily lengthwise into three strips. Bananas are a valuable source of vitamin B6, vitamin C, and potassium.

Grocery store photo of several bunches of bananas
'Cavendish' bananas are the main commercial cultivar

Bananas are grown in at least 107 countries.[3] In popular culture and commerce, "banana" usually refers to soft, sweet "dessert" bananas. The bananas from a group of cultivars with firmer, starchier fruit are called plantains. Bananas may also be cut and dried and eaten as a type of chip. Dried bananas are also ground into banana flour.

Although the wild species have fruits with numerous large, hard seeds, virtually all culinary bananas have seedless fruits. Bananas are classified either as dessert bananas (meaning they are yellow and fully ripe when eaten) or as green cooking bananas. Almost all export bananas are of the dessert types; however, only about 10–15% of all production is for export, with the United States and European Union being the dominant buyers.


And they're yummy too!


There was a weird guy I met once, and I learned one thing from him:"Bananas are an excellent source of potassium!".