A banana plant
1000 species. Bananas are perennial " grasses " that can be between 4 and 15 meters high, being the biggest species Muse ingens that lives in the tropical forests of Papua island in Oceania.
In fact bananas could be considered to be " the biggest grasses" because their trunks are not woody as trees or bushes. What apparenly look like trunks are in fact formed by a group of foliar sheaths, place one on the others ,constituting what would be a false trunk or " pseudostem " that, in the case of the biggest species, can attain 3 metres wide. This stem finishes in a whorl of elliptic or oblong leaves of very considerable size since they can be 3 meters long and half a meter wide.
Each tree possesses an inflorescence with reddish or violet brats made up of numerous little flowers that are located at the end of a great peduncle that begins in the rhizome and crosses through the middle of the stem. Male flowers are located in the superior part of the inflorescence, while the female ones are located below,
Flowers , when maturing, produce bananas. The group of all them form the famous clusters that contain about 200 fruits. An entire cluster weighs between 30 and 50 kg. The false stem dries off when the fruits mature and it is cut at soild level so it will be able to spring again the following year starting from an underground rhizome. The plant can be left in the same place or to be transplanted in another place.
History of bananas
Banana trees come form the Southeast of Asia. Then, from there, they extended towards the India, where of some news are reported in VI century. Later, on they appeared in the whole Equatorial Africa, in Guinea and in Canary Islands, where the Portuguese navigators took them to. Later, they entered in America, via Santo Domingo, and in the whole Central and equatorial America, where today the main producers of the world can be found. They export until 80% of the world production (Brazil, Ecuador, Costa Rica, Colombia, Mexico, Panama, Guatemala, Honduras and Nicaragua, the first three of them being the main ones) Other producing areas are found in Africa (Burundi and Cameroon), in Asia (India, Indonesia, Philippines and China), in the Caribbean (Jamaica) or in Europe (Spain, Portugal and Greece) . As a matter of fact, any region of the world that possesses a warm and humid climate is suitable to cultivate this plant. .