The Banana School, part 1

The banana plant

  • Bananas don’t grow on trees. The banana plant is actually a giant herb.
  • The stem is not wood. That’s why it’s called the pseudostem. You can peel off the fibres, sort of like an onion.
  • The banana plant is 90 per cent water.
    The banana plants grow in ”families” of mother, child and grandchild.

    The banana plants grow in ”families” of mother, child and grandchild.

  • There has to be enough space between the plants, so they don’t inhibit each others’ growth with their shadows.
  • The workers cut off leaves that could damage the growing fruits.
  • The banana has no seeds. When you plant a banana, you plant seedlings of a banana plant.
  • The seedlings are called ”hijos”, children. Every plant consists of three generations: mother, child and grandchild.
  • The workers cut away all the children except the strongest, which will form the next plant.
  • The children always grow on the sunny side, so the plants ”move” around the plantation.
  • Every plant gives one harvest. When the fruit has been harvested, the pseudostem is cut down and its water nourishes the child, who in turn grows and creates children.
  • It takes nine months for a plant to be ready to yield its first and only harvest.

Source: El Cultivo del banano (Ministeria de agricultura y ganaderia), Programa nacional del banano, The Banana Tour guides.

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