By Dr. Angela Kepler and Francis Rust
- Banana’s originate in Southeast Asia.
- They are rich in vitamin C and Potassium.
- Hawaii has had over 100 varieties of banana’s, including edible, inedible and ornamental varieties.
- “Mai’a” – Hawaiian for “banana”
- “Hina’ea” – Hawaiian goddess of the banana.
- Circa 1350 pacific travelers introduced “canoe plants” that included the pacific plantains and pacific bananas that we are familiar with today.
- Canoe banana’s are polynesian heirlooms, they have been very important to Hawaiian culture. One variety in particular is the “Mai’a Maoli” which is common to the west Maui mountains.
- Pacific plantains include 3 main varieties; Maia Maoli, Maia Pop’ulu & Maia Iholena.
- Mai’a Maoli – Large sausage like fruit, plants can be found in the EMI areas of Maui.
- Mai’a Pop’ulu – Short fat fruit, good cooking banana.
- Mai’a Ihalena – Extremely rare, very beau- tiful, Large fruit & Dark leaf, Lots of Keiki, short stature, wind resistant.
- Circa 1820 polynesians introduced the Pacific Fei & Maia Hapi varieties.
- Mai’a Fei – Upright bunches, good cooking banana
- Mai’a Hapi – “pregnant banana”, very sweet & a good dessert banana, bunch emerges from within the stock.
Ice cream – Sweet tasting, short stock 10-15′
Cuban & Dwarf Red – Good tasting banana
healthy soil and healthy keiki (new sprouts).
Signs of virus will include:, “J” – Hooks near the mid-rib of the leaf. Normal veins should be white Infected veins will be green & “dotted”.
Prominent in Pukalani & Kihei !!!
Spread by infected Aphids & Humans. Do not transport infected material, Report to MISC and follow proper handling procedures.