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First banana... wild banana

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First banana... wild banana

Post by Breezey Breezey on Sun Feb 21, 2010 7:34 pm

What did bananas look like originally?

Origins and importance of banana as a food crop
Banana is one of the most fascinating and important of all crops. It is a large monocotyledenous herb that originated in Southeast Asia. Virtually all of the cultivars that are grown are thought to have been selected as naturally occurring hybrids in this region by the earliest of farmers. In fact, Norman Simmonds proposed that banana was one of the first crops to be domesticated by man. In writing of the beginnings of agriculture in Southeast Asia, he concluded, "It seems a reasonable assumption that the bananas evolved along with the earliest settled agriculture of that area and may therefore be some tens of thousands of years old."

Despite the current, clear understanding of its ancestry, the edible bananas' origins are often confused in the literature. Almost all of the 300 or more cultivars that are known arose from two seeded, diploid species, Musa acuminata Colla and M. balbisiana Colla; they are diploid, triploid and tetraploid hybrids among subspecies of M. acuminata, and between M. acuminata and M. balbisiana.

Conventionally, the haploid contributions of the respective species to the cultivars are noted with an A and B. For example, the Cavendish cultivars that are the mainstays of the export trades are pure triploid acuminata and, thus, AAA. The Linnaean species M. paradisiaca (the AAB plantains) and M. sapientum (the sweet dessert bananas, of which Silk AAB is the type cultivar) are invalid and no longer used.

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Re: First banana... wild banana

Post by Tater Salad on Sun Feb 21, 2010 8:49 pm

Mmmm...Gotta love those monocotyledenous herbs!

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Re: First banana... wild banana

Post by Breezey Breezey on Sun Feb 21, 2010 9:27 pm

Tater, I want a REAL banana!! I want bananas the way they really grow, not man altered ones!! Shocked

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Re: First banana... wild banana

Post by Tater Salad on Sun Feb 21, 2010 9:36 pm

My understanding is that the seeds were predominant and much larger than they are now, so that they weren't very fun to eat.

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Re: First banana... wild banana

Post by Breezey Breezey on Sun Feb 21, 2010 9:41 pm

Still was the REAL deal. I also hate seedless watermelons. They taste crappy. Sad

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Re: First banana... wild banana

Post by Tater Salad on Sun Feb 21, 2010 10:09 pm

Breezey, MOST fruits and vegetables have been altered over the millenniums by selective breeding, so much so that in a lot of cases, you wouldn't recognize or even like the original fruit. I have had seedless watermelons that were delicious, and I have had some that weren't so good, just like regular watermelons.

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Re: First banana... wild banana

Post by Breezey Breezey on Sun Feb 21, 2010 10:15 pm

Tater, is this from the guy who posted that the seeds were the healthiest part of grapes? lol
Things aren't even normal or real anymore. How is it man can change and invent all these new foods, yet people go hungry?
Seriously... I don't like all the things man has changed about food and I don't like the water either. Now... please give me a REAL banana? Sad

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Re: First banana... wild banana

Post by JackRabbit on Sun Feb 21, 2010 10:24 pm

Hmmm, I wonder what the first cookie looked like? [You must be registered and logged in to see this image.]

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Excuse me ... my mind wandered ... we were discussing bananas, weren't we?
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Re: First banana... wild banana

Post by Breezey Breezey on Sun Feb 21, 2010 10:38 pm

The first cookie was flatter than flat, greener than green and had no chocolate chips!! Are you happy now?! lmao!!

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Re: First banana... wild banana

Post by Tater Salad on Sun Feb 21, 2010 10:42 pm

Breezey, the bananas you get in the market today are real bananas, they've just gone through centuries of natural selection to make them sweeter and more appealing. They haven't been genetically modified or anything like that. If you want to try a different variety, try a plantain, but just be warned, they are for cooking, not eating raw.

I happen to prefer seedless grapes as I never enjoyed the crunch of the seeds while trying to eat them; I just find it ironic that they now claim grape seed extract is supposed to be very good for you.

As far as watermelons go, you may have had one that wasn't very ripe, or not grown in ideal conditions, but generally I find them to be just as tasty but not as messy as seeded watermelons.

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Re: First banana... wild banana

Post by Breezey Breezey on Sun Feb 21, 2010 10:48 pm

Tater, if things were so great redone, why weren't they seedless to start with? It's not nice to fool with mother nature or me. :suspect: See, I want things the way they are supposed to be, not the way man wants them to be. Food has seeds for a reason.

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Re: First banana... wild banana

Post by Tater Salad on Sun Feb 21, 2010 10:55 pm

Well, you can still get the wild ones if you really want to, but you will have to go to where they have always been, in the jungles of southeast Asia.

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Re: First banana... wild banana

Post by Breezey Breezey on Sun Feb 21, 2010 11:04 pm

Yeah... like all the good stuff, it's harder to come by and costs a fortune.

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Re: First banana... wild banana

Post by Tater Salad on Sun Feb 21, 2010 11:25 pm

Breezey, wild bananas are considered inedible.

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Re: First banana... wild banana

Post by Breezey Breezey on Sun Feb 21, 2010 11:38 pm

Tater, I guess it just depends on who you ask....
Wild banana

Distribution

Wild banana (Musa spp.) grows in Bhutan's sub-tropical and temperate regions at up to 1,800 metres (Table 2). There are three varieties. Although it has never been successfully managed, wild banana grows prolifically on "tseri" (shifting cultivation) land abandoned after cultivation, openings in forests, and on most terraces. Regeneration is quick and growth is profuse in these particular areas.

Current Uses and Potential

Banana leaves are used in house construction, roofing, and for making temporary sheds. The leaves and stems are also used as fodder for elephants and other animals. The flowers and fruits are, of course, edible. The fibres from banana leaves make good paper, but they are not commonly used for this purpose in Bhutan.

The inner soft core of the banana stem is edible. The Bhutanese use the water extracted from this stem to cure stomach ailments and as an antidote to Aconitum poisoning. This type of poisoning, from the Aconitum spp., is rare, but can happen during the preparation of medicine. The leaves and stems are also used for preserving fish, meat, butter, "pani" (beetle leaves), and other foodstuffs. Banana stems are also used as conduits and to make rafts.

The country's growing production and demand for paper will undoubtedly increase the demand for this renewable banana resource, thus increasing rural Bhutanese income. The traditional uses of banana leaves and stems - part of the country's cultural heritage - will, however, continue.

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Re: First banana... wild banana

Post by Tater Salad on Sun Feb 21, 2010 11:53 pm

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Breezey, this is a wild banana. The seeds are very large, hard as a rock, and take up about half of the fruit. The fruit may technically be edible, but very hard, starchy, and not very sweet at all. I very much doubt you would eat it unless you were starving and it was the only food available.

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Re: First banana... wild banana

Post by Breezey Breezey on Mon Feb 22, 2010 12:04 am

Tater, people have become accustomed to fruits and things being altered and having sweeter tastes to them. I am not much for sweet foods and think I would deal just fine with those bananas. They're the way a banana was intended to be. Sweeter isn't always better.

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Re: First banana... wild banana

Post by hoaloha on Mon Feb 22, 2010 5:45 pm

Breezey, we have banana's all over Maui. The apple banana is one of the best. You want REAL banana's cmon over. When we harvest the apple banana we cut down the tree because it won't grow anymore banana's, so they shoot up new trees and the cycle starts again. Once planted and established, they just keep on growing. Here you can grow banana's all year long.
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Re: First banana... wild banana

Post by Tater Salad on Mon Feb 22, 2010 6:16 pm

Ron, those aren't "real bananas', they are domesticated. Breezey wants wild bananas, which only grow in Southeast Asia. They look like this:

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