- The type of banana sold commercially worldwide is called a Cavendish banana. The preferred variety was originally the Gros Michel, which essentially became extinct by 1960, due to a fungus called Panama disease, and which now threatens the Cavendish. Although there are 1,000 varieties of banana plants, most or unpalatable or inedible, meaning there is no substitute should the Cavendish be wiped out. The most palatable banana variety behind the Cavendish is the Goldfinger. The problem is, it tastes more like an apple than a banana.
- Over 100 million bananas are consumed worldwide every year, making bananas the fourth largest agricultural product in the world. Americans eat more bananas every year than any other fruit. As a matter of fact, we eat more bananas a year than we do apples and oranges combined.
- Bananas don’t go on trees. Those plants are classified as a treelike perennial herb, and a banana is actually a berry.
- Bananas contain no fat, sodium, or cholesterol, are low in calories, and are an excellent source of potassium, fiber, and Vitamin B6, C, and more! They replenish necessary carbohydrates, glycogen and body fluids burned during exercise.
- The expression “Banana republic” was coined for states run by large banana companies, who would support and protect any dictator who would in turn protect their corporate interests,
- A cluster of bananas is a “hand,” and each individual fruit is a “finger.”
- Bananas were officially introduced to the American public at the 1876 Philadelphia Centennial Exhibition. Each banana was wrapped in foil and sold for 10 cents.
- The scientific name for banana is musa sapientum, which means “fruit of the wise men.”
- Bananas float in water, one of only three fruits that do (the other two are the apple and the watermelon).
- The Banana Club Museum, located on Highway 111 in Mecca, Calif. (just south of Palm Springs), houses the world’s largest collection devoted to any one fruit. It contains more than 17,000 banana items, most of which have been donated by members. (To join the club, visit www.bananaclub.com.)
- Thanks to its oil, rubbing the inside of a banana peel on a mosquito bite (or other bug bite) or on poison ivy will help keep it from itching and getting inflamed.
- If you rub the inside of a banana peel on a scrape or burn, it will help the pain go away, keep the swelling down, and keep the wound from getting infected.
- If you rub the inside of a small piece of banana peel on a wart every night (or tape a piece of peel over the wart), the potassium in the peel can make the wart disappear in one to two weeks.
- If you tape a banana peel over a splinter, the enzymes help the splinter work its way out of your skin (and also heal the wound).
- To whiten teeth naturally, rub the inside of a banana peel on your teeth for about two minutes every night.
- Rubbing a banana peel on your forehead can help cure a headache.
- Bananas and banana peels make great fertilizer (you can compost them, bury them whole, or cut them in small pieces and mix them with garden soil) because of their phosphorous and potassium content. Roses especially like them.
- Rubbing the inside of a banana peel on houseplant leaves makes the leaves shiny.
- You can use the inside of a banana peel to clean and polish leather shoes.
- Banana peels also make a good silver polish—just rub silver with the inside of a peel and then buff with a cloth.
And then there is Chiquita Banana…
Bentogurgel. (n.d.). Chiquita Banana [Commercial Video]. Retrieved November 1, 2013 from http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hhif_hPP56A
Fun Banana Facts. (n.d.). Thebananapolice.com. Retrieved November 2, 2013 from http://thebananapolice.com/fun-facts/
Banana Facts. (n.d.). Bananasaver.com. Retrieved November 2, 2013 from http://bananasaver.com/BananaFacts.htm
Hiskey, D. (2010, September 20). 15 facts you probably didn’t know about bananas. Todayifoundout.com. Retrieved November 2, 2013 from http://www.todayifoundout.com/index.php/2010/09/15-facts-you-probably-didnt-know-about-bananas/
Meryn, R. (2011). Banana Hand. [Photograph]. Retrieved November 2, 2013 from http://www.industryleadersmagazine.com/peel-potential-banana-peels-make-excellent-water-purifying-system/