Do Bananas Have Seeds? its 2023

Introduction

Bananas, a widely consumed fruit, offer various ways of enjoyment. They can be eaten fresh, used in recipes, or even frozen. However, whether bananas have, seeds is more complex than it appears.

You may notice small black dots when you cut open a store-bought banana. Contrary to popular belief, these dots are not actual seeds because they cannot fulfil the primary function of seeds.

Store-bought bananas have undergone genetic modification to possess three sets of genes instead of the usual two. This alteration results in the development of triploid bananas, which have underdeveloped seeds. However, these immature seeds cannot be planted or used to grow new banana plants.

Bananas in the wild have seeds, but bananas bought at the grocery store do not.

Commercial Bananas

In commercial banana cultivation, bananas are typically harvested well before reaching the nine-to-twelve-month mark. Once the rhizomes sprout, new banana pups emerge from the ground. These pups are harvested when they reach three to four feet.

Commercial Bananas pictures

Although the banana pups may appear different from their mother plant, they are connected at the root. This interconnectedness allows them to be harvested and replanted as mother plants. This method significantly increases the availability of bananas compared to their wild counterparts.

Notably, the process of commercial banana growth does not involve the use of seeds. While numerous banana varieties exist, the Cavendish banana is the most widely cultivated commercially. This banana type owes its name to William Cavendish, who developed a technique known as triploid. By crossbreeding various wild banana species, triploids prevent the seeds from fully developing, resulting in the Cavendish banana we commonly encounter today.

Wild Bananas

The primary distinction between commercial and wild bananas lies in the presence of mature seeds. Wild bananas naturally thrive in tropical regions like India, Southeast Asia, and northern Australia.

Wild Banana

Unlike their commercial counterparts, wild bananas possess minimal edible fruit. Instead, they are filled with fully developed seeds that resemble bullets. Moreover, wild bananas are notably smaller than the larger and more familiar commercial bananas. In their natural habitat, wild bananas grow in a manner that aligns with our expectations.

Wild bananas reproduce through conventional sexual reproduction, like many other plant species, whereas commercially grown bananas are propagated asexually. While wild bananas can be consumed, their flavour is more intense or spicy than commercial bananas’ milder taste. Interestingly, bananas are often referred to as plantains in their natural state, while the ones we commonly eat are known as “dessert bananas.”

Growing Your Own Bananas

Although store-bought bananas lack viable seeds, it is still possible to cultivate your own banana plants using wild banana seeds.

Growing Your Own Bananas

While commercial bananas won’t yield successful results, the process of growing bananas from wild banana seeds is relatively straightforward:

  1. Begin by softening the wild banana seeds. Place them in a bowl of warm water and allow them to soak. Remember to change the water when it cools down. Let the seeds soak for approximately 48 hours to facilitate the sprouting of the seed embryo.
  2. Prepare a seed tray and line it with potting soil enriched with organic compost. Ensure that more than half of the soil mixture consists of sandy or airy loam, as the growing seeds will absorb these nutrients.
  3. Plant the seeds approximately a quarter inch below the soil surface. Since the soil temperature should remain above 68 degrees Fahrenheit, it is advisable to carry out this step indoors.
  4. To maintain the required temperature, consider using a heat mat. Generally, the seeds need around 19 hours of cooler temperatures and five hours of warmth. This regulated temperature will aid in their growth.
  5. Aim to keep the seed tray moist but not saturated when watering the seeds. The seeds require a damp environment for germination. After this stage, follow the provided instructions and exercise patience. Germination time can vary, with certain varieties sprouting within weeks, while others may take a few months.

Following these steps, you can embark on the rewarding journey of growing your banana plants from wild banana seeds.

How Bananas Grow?

Approximately ten months after sowing the banana seed, the plant will exhibit a protruding flowering stalk. This stalk gives rise to a pseudo stem that emerges from the centre. The pseudo stem boasts approximately thirty individual leaves growing from it. Subsequently, flowers begin to emerge.

How Bananas Grows

The flowers develop in spirals along the stalk of the banana plant. Over time, these flowers transform into bananas that contain viable seeds. Typically, this transformation process spans 180 days. However, when starting from seeds, it can extend beyond a year. It becomes evident why commercial growers opt for alternative methods!

Commercial banana production focuses on maximizing efficiency and reducing the time it takes to cultivate mature fruit. Therefore, commercial growers primarily employ vegetative propagation techniques, such as offshoots or tissue culture, to bypass the lengthy seed germination and plant growth process. This approach allows them to achieve faster and more consistent results than relying on seeds.

Where are the seeds from a banana?

In commercial bananas, the seeds are typically greatly reduced in size and are often undeveloped and non-functional. They are usually found in the centre of the fruit, represented by small black dots or specks. These tiny seeds are vestigial remnants of the wild banana’s reproductive structures. However, they are not typically viable and are not used for propagation or reproduction.

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Why don t American bananas have seeds?

American bananas, specifically the commonly consumed Cavendish variety, are seedless due to various factors. Commercial banana cultivation relies heavily on vegetative propagation methods such as tissue culture and offshoots or suckers from existing banana plants. This allows growers to produce genetically identical plants without relying on seeds.

The seedlessness of American bananas can also be attributed to selective breeding and genetic modifications. Over time, banana cultivators have favoured varieties with reduced or non-functional seeds. This has been achieved through controlled breeding and the selection of plants that exhibit seed lessness or greatly diminished seeds.

The preference for seedless bananas in the American market is due to their convenient and enjoyable eating experience. Seedless bananas are easier to consume since there is no need to remove or deal with seeds, and they typically have a smoother texture. As a result, banana producers have focused on developing and cultivating seedless varieties to meet consumer demand.

Final Thoughts

While it is true that wild bananas contain seeds, the bananas available for purchase at grocery stores have undergone extensive genetic modifications over time, resulting in a seedless variety.

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