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Main Banana Discussion This is where we discuss our banana collections; tips on growing bananas, tips on harvesting bananas, sharing our banana photos and stories.

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Old 09-26-2014, 09:30 AM   #1 (permalink)
TommyMacLuckie's Avatar
Location: Mandeville, Louisiana
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Default "A Regular Banana" In India Is...

I went to southern India this summer with my wife and Louisiana family. It was a great experience. The weather was great. The food was great and the people were interesting, most of them pleasant. The litter wasn't but they don't have landfills so... they live with their trash.

I knew I was in banana land, as well as mango land and lots of other plants (there are at least 10 billion coconut trees there) and animals. The monsoon was dry on the southeast coast (it was in the 100s in Chennai and dry as a bone), warm and humid inland (central Tamil Nadu), humid and cool on the SW coast (Kerala) and rainy and cool on the west coast (Goa). The rain moves north throughout the summer during the SW monsoon.

What I observed was American's saying "I went out in the monsoon" in place of "I went out in the rain". Monsoon is not rain, it's wind. A monsoon can bring rain. And it's not monsoon season, it's monsoon. There is a dry monsoon and a wet monsoon. Monsoon IS a season, so it didn't surprise me that American's were PIN numbering it to death (like Mardi Gras - Mardi Gras is a day - ONE DAY - not the season, which is Carnival). At one point I heard someone ask a rickshaw driver about 'monsoon season' and the guy turned his head and gave him a funny look.

Plant wise what I saw I was a bit surprised about. The diversity is similar to Jamaica but more so. There are lots of bananas but they seemed to have been the same kind in areas. The variety of them was small. I saw Grand Nain growing wild in yards. I saw what I believe to be Robusta as well.

I saw one - ONE! - red Ornata. I didn't see any other Ornata.

The most common banana I saw was what turned out to be Mysore. When I was looking at them I couldn't tell (most of it was out of a van window or through my camera). I'd stop at a fruit stand where there'd be 3 to 5 kinds of bananas available - all incredibly delicious - and I'd buy a hand of each.

I'm pretty sure one kind was Gros Michel. It was the biggest banana I've ever seen and eaten and it was delicious.

For breakfast, where ever we were, there was a rather small banana. When I asked if they knew what kind they were I got the same answer with a smile and the head bobble: it's a regular banana.

Not one person knew the name of any banana. I was a bit surprised - and miffed! - that not one person knew ONE THING about any kind of banana (in Jamaica they at least know about the Gros Michel and continue to grow and eat them as well as what they call Frog banana, which looks a lot like the Mysore). Even at the spice plantation where they knew some things about the plants they grow there (outside of Goa) they didn't know what kind of bananas they had.

The heliconia were fantastic.

If I can do it correctly there will be pics in the member gallery.
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