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P Native Photo: Tabish
Common name: Banana • Hindi: केला Kela • Kannada: ಬಾೞೆ Baazhe, ಬಾಳೆ, Baale • Malayalam: Vaazha • Manipuri: ꯂꯐꯨ ꯊꯔꯣ Laphoo tharo • Tamil: Vaazha வாழை • Nepali: केरा Kera • Telugu: అరటి Arati • Mizo: Balhlakual, Vaibalhla • Angami: Tekhusi • Sanskrit: कदली Kadalee, वारणबुसा Vaaranabusaa, रम्भा rambhaa, मोचा Mochaa, अंशुमत्फला Amshumatphalaa
Botanical name: Musa x paradisiaca    Family: Musaceae (Banana family)
Synonyms: Karkandela x malabarica, Musa x champa, Musa x dacca

Banana is a tropical tree-like herb, with large leaves of which the overlapping bases form the so-called false trunk. Fully grown, the stem reaches a height of 10 - to 30 feet. From the center of the crown spring the flowers. Only female flowers develop into a banana fruit that vary in length from about 4 - 12 inches. The average weight of a bunch is about 25 lbs. Each banana plant bears fruit only once. The propagation is through shoots from the rhizomes, since most of the seeds species are sterile. In India, almost every part of the banana plant is used, either for food, or for wrapping food. The unripe fruit of banana, rich in starch, is commonly dried and fried as chips in south India. The banana stem is also eaten after cooking. The ripe fruit is commonly eaten.

Identification credit: Dinesh Valke Photographed in Delhi.

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