What Is A Banana And Why Do People Love Them So Much?
Banana (Musa paradisiaca) is a fruit native to South America. They are cultivated throughout the world, with most being grown in Central and South America. There are over 100 different species of bananas, but only three have been widely used for food production: Musa spp., M. acuminata and M. gigantea . All three species are members of the family Musaceae, which includes many other fruits such as plums, apricots and watermelons.
The banana is one of the oldest cultivated plants in history. It was first domesticated about 5500 years ago in Southeast Asia, where it was known as kumara or kumara-kona , meaning “the sweet potato.” Since then it has spread all around the globe through human intervention. The banana is now grown in every continent except Antarctica.
There are two main types of bananas: Cavendish and Musa . The Cavendish variety originated from the wild banana, M. acuminata , while the Musa variety originates from a hybrid between M. acuminata and M.
gigantea . Both varieties are grown commercially for their edible fleshy parts, but they differ greatly in flavor and texture due to differences in their genetic makeup.
Banana plants are herbaceous, perennial plants that belong to the genus Musa of the Musaceae family. They grow up to 25-30 feet (7.5-9.1 meters) tall and 15 feet (4.57 meters) wide.
A fully grown banana plant has large, leathery, broad leaves that grow up to 3 feet (0.6 meters). These plants are mostly grown from suckers that develop at the base of the mother plant. However, they can also be grown from “seed,” which is really a banana “bean” that needs to be scarified or stratified before planting.
The banana fruit develops along the sides of the trunk and the large leaf petioles of the banana plant. Each individual banana is composed of hundreds of small flowers arranged in a spiral pattern, called an inflorescence. The bananas we consume are not fruits, but rather enlarged shoots.
Classified as an berry, each banana fruit consists of more than 1000 seeds packed together. Since the excavation of a Honduran graveyard in the late 1970s, it has been known that the pre-Columbian inhabitants of America would add these seeds to their graves, suggesting that banana seeds were considered an important food.
There are many types of banana, including the sweet dessert bananas that we consume as fruit, the Bananier Rouge (red banana), which can be used to make wine or distilled into alcohol, and the Fe’i bananas, a type of banana grown on trees that are used for making traditional Hawaiian shirted and palm-leaf thatch roofs. Some varieties can grow up to 33 inches long and weigh up to 11 pounds.
The word “banana” comes from the Arabic word “banan,” which means finger. In Arabic culture, bananas are called “Qablihi” or “Qibleh,” meaning the fruit of the fingers. In ancient times, the phalanx (the bone of the index finger) was thought to be symbolic of sexual prowess. The fact that bananas come in bunches and have a similar shape led to this association.
The Hebrew word for a banana is “Yema'” meaning “they come together.”
Bananas are an important food staple in many tropical countries, especially in Southeast Asia and West Africa. One of their greatest uses, however, is in the production of alcohol, such as the arrack made in Indonesia or the toddy made in Sri Lanka. The wine fondly known as Monkey Gland Sauce in Barbados is made from bananas.
Bananas are excellent food for explorers and adventurers due to their ease of transport and high levels of nutrition. They were carried to the top of the world by the Norwegian explorer Fridtjof Nansen and the American explorer Robert Peary. Such a well-known brand of monkeys, the Simpsons, have made reference to this fact.
Bananas are the most widely distributed fruit in the world due to their status as one of our greatest sources of nutrition. Today, the largest producers of bananas are the Philippines, Taiwan, Indonesia, India and China. There are two types of bananas that grow naturally: the soft, sweet dessert bananas and the red bananas, which have a more cake-like texture and are less sweet. Plantains are sometimes called “green” bananas even though when ripe they turn yellow.
The plantain is the only type of banana that is eaten cooked when ripe, instead of raw. The banana is one of the most popular fruits in the world due to its taste, versatility and easy access.
Bananas are native to Asia, but today they can be grown in all sorts of different climates. They are grown in Queensland, Australia, despite the fact that the average yearly temperature is only 22 degrees Celsius. In more tropical areas, such as Indonesia and the Philippines, bananas are a crucial food source and even form part of the population’s daily diet. In these warmer places, bananas form the basis for many desserts and snacks.
They are often fried and eaten as a dessert. They are also made into a popular sweet and sticky juice.
The banana is one of the oldest fruits known to man. Its origins can be traced back to ancient India and Southeast Asia, where it has been cultivated for more than 3,000 years. The Chinese Emperor Wu was said to have loved the banana so much that his gardeners guarded it jealously and would kill anyone found stealing even a single fruit. The ancient Egyptians also cultivated the fruit, which they considered an aphrodisiac.
The word “banana” comes from the Arabic word “banna,” which means the bent one, in reference to its peculiar habit of hooking around other objects. It has been described as “a long and flexible fruit with a thin, inedible skin and an edible pulp surrounding a central axis on which the seeds are borne.”
The United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) states that over 100 million people worldwide depend on the banana as their primary food source. The plant is a complete food as it provides essential nutrients such as carbohydrates, protein, vitamins and minerals in a very palatable form. It is also rich in dietary fiber.
There are two types of edible bananas: those that are eaten before they are ripe and those that are eaten when they are ripe, which results in a softer texture. Green bananas that are not eaten when ripe can be left to ripen and then eaten later. They also store longer and do not need to be eaten immediately after they are picked. The banana plant can grow up to 15 feet tall and blooms continuously.
Each flower lasts for one day only, but a new one grows in its place the next day.
Bananas are one of the most popular fruits in the world and grow in abundance in tropical climates. There are many different varieties of this fruit and the plants they grow on belong to the Musaceae family. The banana is an herb. Its scientific name is Musa Acuminata Colla.
The banana originated in India and Southeast Asia, where it has been cultivated for over 3000 years. The ancient Egyptians grew banana plants, which were used by farmers to produce the fruit in great hothouses. It was introduced to Africa around 600 B.C.
Sources & references used in this article:
Feasibility of in vitro propagation of banana and plantains by E De Langhe, D Vuylstek – Tropical Agriculture (Trinidad), 1985 – biw.kuleuven.be
Isolation and characterization of the flour and starch of plantain bananas (Musa paradisiaca) by FM Pelissari, MM Andrade‐Mahecha… – Starch …, 2012 – Wiley Online Library
Pesticide use in banana and plantain production and risk perception among local actors in Talamanca, Costa Rica by D Barraza, K Jansen, BW de Joode, C Wesseling – Environmental research, 2011 – Elsevier