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The Banana Story

By Moushumi Mohanty

You think bananas grow on trees? Wrong. They don't, because the banana tree is actually a plant. It is probably the largest plant in the world.

The Banana Story, Earth facts for kids: 48_1.gif To know more, look at the banana trunk. Is it wood? No. There are layers of skin placed in circles. These layers are actually the lower ends of banana leaves. In other words, the banana tree is a clump of leaves!

At the top of the plant is a chunk of leaves looking like a palm tree. The flower bud grows in the stalk, which is right in the middle of these leaves. From this flower bud grows the bunch of banana fruits, all of which point skywards. There is only one bunch at a time. But, it can be quite heavy. Sometimes, it could weigh up to 45 kilograms!

It is believed that the banana originated in Southeast Asia and came to India thousands of years ago. It is, in fact, one of the oldest known fruits to mankind, and is eaten as a fruit as well as vegetable. Some roast it green or boil it, or even make wine out of it. And others just can't resist the banana split.

The word banana is of African origin. Experts believe that it may have a link with the Arabic word banan, meaning a finger or fingers.

The Banana Story [Earth facts for kids]
By Moushumi Mohanty


Pitara Kids Home > Discover > Earth facts for kids

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