Sunday, April 14, 2013

Growing Bananas

What a pleasant surprise! So many weeks inside with my nose buried in patterns and fabric that I didn't even know until just a few days ago that our banana tree is blooming! 

This tree was here when we moved in last August and I have been more than patient waiting for something to happen with it. I was almost giving up hope because they are supposed to flower and fruit when they are about a year old. This tree is almost 2 years old and I am so glad that I didn't take a machete to it like I've been wanting to. Instead we have been watering it a lot--bananas are notoriously thirsty trees--and mulching it with lots of grass and yard clippings.

I'm calling it a tree but really bananas are not trees at all, they are herbs. The trunk is not at all woody it is just layer after layer of thick leaves. It is soft and can be easily chopped down with a machete. Once the bananas have matured that is exactly what we will do: chop it down. Banana trees only bear fruit once. Two Keiki's (baby banana trees) are already growing up next to the tree so hopefully a year from now we'll get another crop of bananas.

Over the course of the next month these fingers will fatten up to regular banana size. This is a cambodian apple banana tree so the bananas won't be as long as the ones you buy at Costco. They don't taste the same either. They have a less starchy feel in your mouth, firm but kind of like pudding silky smooth, and they have a hint of apple flavor.

I'll post more pictures as it matures.

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