India is a leading producer of banana and out of the total production, 25% of the Production is from Maharashtra. Both yellow and red banana is grown in Maharashtra (state of India), the banana of Bhusaval, near Jalgaon district is famous.
There are about 300 varieties of this fruit found all over the world, but only 15 to 20 are used commercially. Banana is an important energy boosting fruit.
Jalgaon in Maharashtra and Burhanpur in Madhya Pradesh are becoming famous as important banana producing districts. Especially, Bhusaval is quite famous for this. Maharashtra is third in its production but number one in terms of exports.
Major varieties cultivated in Maharashtra,
Dwarf Cavendish, Basrai, Robusta, Lal Velchi, Safed Velchi, Rajeli Nendran, Grand Naine, Shreemanti, Red Banana, etc.
Varieties with their characteristics,
Basrai: About 75 percent of the total area of banana in Maharashtra is under its cultivation. It has good demand in the market. Its fruit quality is very good. This breed is adapted to hot and dry climates. This species is less harmed by wind.
The clusters of this species are large and similar in size. There are about 6 to 7 bunches, with 15 to 25 bananas in a bunch. The fruit of this species is large in size, dark brown in colour and with good aroma and sweetness. This species is disease resistant.
Greenery: This variety is mostly cultivated in the Vasai region. The height of this species is up to 4 meters. The bark of this variety is very thick and the fruits are blunt. This variety is durable. This species is influenced by the marine climate.
Lalvelchi: This variety is found exclusively in the Konkan region. The colour of the stem is red, tall tree, the fruit is small, thin peel and the taste is mango-sweet and the colour is yellow. Cultivation of this variety is more than other varieties of banana in India.
Whitewell: This species is long, slender. The fruit is very small and has a thin bark. Its stem is thick. Cultivation of this variety is found in Thane district.
Sonkela: The tree of this species has a height of 5 m, strong stem, medium thick and round shape and its taste is sweet and delicious. Cultivation of this variety is found in Ratnagiri region.
Rajeli: This species is found in large numbers in the Konkan region. The height of this tree is 5 meters. The fruits are large and long. The raw fruits of this variety are suitable for cooking and eating.
Bankela: This species is 4 to 5 meters tall. Its fruits are large, straight and angular in shape of a shoe. This variety is useful for vegetables. Cultivation of this variety is found in the Konkan region.
Red Banana: The height of this species is 4 to 5 meters. The fruits are large, dense and firm. The bark of this breed is red and orange in colour and the fur is dense. Also, the taste is sweet. The cultivation of this variety is found in the Thane region.