Filed Under (Malian culture) by Rob on 03-06-2011

(Did you arleady know about this???)

I’ve never grown bananas before. In England, we grew beans, potatoes, carrots, courgettes…but never bananas!! That’s one of the advantages of living in a hot, tropical country like Mali! So, just over a year ago, I bought two banana plants for 1500 and 2000cfa respectively (that’s about £2 and £2.50). Here’s what they looked like then:

Once they’re planted, it’s all very easy: you just water them when they need it and watch ’em grow (very quickly indeed!) Within twelve months, the larger one grew from three feet to eight feet – just like that! Amazing! And then the bananas appeared and started to grow. Here they are at various stages of development (taken roughly in December, February, March and May):

Now, bearing in mind my initial investment of £2.50 (or $4), we recently harvested no fewer than 163 bananas from the one plant! That’s 1.5 pence per banana!! Wow! So, in the past couple of weeks, we’ve made banana icecream, banana cake, banoffee pie, banana chutney, bananas in chocolate…you name it. Just realized we haven’t done ‘banane flamée’ yet, but we still have a couple of dozen left for that.
Want to know more about growing banans?
Then visit banana.com which also has a great recipe page here.


3 Comments posted on "Rob’s Bananas!"
anne on June 5th, 2011 at 8:21 pm #

love the photo of your banana loving family

John Parkinson on June 6th, 2011 at 5:49 pm #

Great to read that you are enjoying one of the great energy foods, but remember the basic husbandry, Rob! No > 3 suckers, plenty of irrigation, mulch around the base. If you need the whole toots, ask Alex to copy you the details from the tech book on Dicotyledons in the tropics by Purselove that I’ve just sent out to him It’s the ‘bible’ for agriculturalists – there’s another on monocots. But you don’t need to be overwhelmed unless you are planning to also produce lots of cereals as well!)

Ed on June 6th, 2011 at 9:01 pm #

What about banana chutney ? I’m sure we have a recipe here somewhere…only problem being is we have your jam pan !