10 Weird Banana Facts


photo: kbear.fm

  1. Bananas “trees” are actually the world’s tallest herbaceous plant. They can reach 20 feet in height. “Herbaceous” means there is no woody stem and all the plant matter above the ground dies at the end of a yearly cycle.
  2. What keeps the Banana tree growing each year (making it a perennial plant) is its corm (yes c-o-r-m), which looks like a brown ball, 10 inches in diameter. New offshoots develop from the corm.
  3. The fruits grow off the main stems in large clusters that can weigh over 100 pounds, with up to 400 individual bananas per cluster!
  4. Bananas are a tropical plant and originated in the Indonesia region; today they are grown in over 100 countries.
  5. Banana reached the new world with Portuguese settlers in the 16th century, with plantation being set up in south and central America. They were virtually unknown to Americans until after the civil war.
  6. Although here in the states we are mostly acquainted with the yellow Cavendish variant, sweet bananas come in a variety of colors – green, yellow, red, purple, or brown.
  7. Plantains are a type of banana that is firmer and not as sweet as the banana. They are very starchy and require some type of heat preparation to break down the starches into sugars and become edible.
  8. Bananas are picked unripe green and exported this way. They are the ripened in special storage chambers using ethylene.
  9. Despite their firm texture and rather dry mouth-feel, bananas are composed of 75% water.
  10. Nutritionally, bananas are wonderful – a 4 oz. medium banana has just 100 calories, but 3 grams of fiber, 20% of your daily value of magnesium, and 10% of your daily potassium needs. It is a good source of vitamin C as well! A banana after a workout, along with plenty of water, can help replenish you more effectively and cheaply than any energy drink.
  • mfp142

    Eating a mostly green banana takes care of acid reflux!

  • Sam

    My favorite banana recipe: 1/2 frozen banana, 1 ripe peach, 5.3 oz Siggi’s vanilla yogurt, 1/2 tsp cinnamon and 1/2 tsp vanilla. Blend with 1 cup crushed ice and you have yourself one heck of a great tasting breakfast smoothie.

    • Esther

      May sound like a dumb question but how do you peel a frozen banana? Or do you freeze them with the peel off?

      • lymore

        freeze with peel off.

  • Corey Rowland

    Bananas make a great ice cream! Just freeze them and blend with water and maybe throw in some cinnamon/cocoa powder. Really good.

    • Kristopher Rodriguez

      Also a great substitute for mix in pancakes

  • Brooke

    I prefer to eat bananas when there are just barely ripe & not nearly as sweet. Are they any more/less nutritious then, or does the ripeness not really matter?

    • Corey Rowland

      When you say just barely ripe, do you mean that some spots have started to develop? The riper (more spotty) they are, the more nutritious. They also digest much better that way because they are less starchy.

      • LarryMoeCurly

        Not correct, bananas become more starchy when they ripen. Which in turn means more sugars. If you bake receipes request bananas that are almost brown for muffins and bread.

  • Guinevieve

    Delicious Banana peanut butter ice cream – 2 large bananas sliced and frozen( thaw for 10 minutes before using)
    Blend together frozen bananas, 2 tablespoons peanut butter, 1-2 tablespoons almond milk, 1/2 teaspoon vanilla, 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
    Eat soft or place in freezer in covered container to freeze … Take out of freezer briefly tosoften a bit before eating

  • lymore

    weird fact #11- rubbing the inside of a banana peel on mosquito bites stops the itching

  • Sammy

    Organic bananas from Kroger taste amazing! I’ve tried organic at Costco and tjs, there not as tasty for some unknown reason!

  • kathy

    Rub the inside of a banana peel on a wart and it will go away.

  • Kev