Mar 20 2013

Botanical Wednesday: What is that thing on the banana plant?

What with all the bad weather around here, my wife is staying at an apartment near her workplace. And every time she does that, she starts sending me these kinds of photos. Should I be concerned?


(via petitchef)


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  1. 1

    or enthused…

  2. 2

    LOL, it’s a flower! Apparently you can drink the nectar? Who knew.


  3. 3

    “Should I be concerned?” Not unless it points up and she starts pole dancing. Even then, let her have some fun. What’s the harm?

  4. 4

    Triffid, isn’t it?

  5. 5
    Dick the Damned

    I dunno. But why can’t I see Kirk Cameron lying face-down on the branch above the bunch of bananas? Was he air-brushed out?

  6. 6
    cm's changeable moniker (quaint, if not charming)

    Hm. In the wild, the bananas I’ve seen (and I’ve seen a few) were wearing protection.

  7. 7


    In the wild, CM?

  8. 8

    Maybe she just wants to move to somewhere warm. Somewhere tropical, where bananas grow.

  9. 9

    One can feel inadequacy by such plants.

  10. 10
    Alexander the Good Enough

    I’ve always found it amusing, ironic and somewhat disconcerting that we seem to be so into presenting our beloved with the, typically deracinated, sex organs of plants.

    And ThorGoLucky, talk about feelings of inadequacy, consider this poor wretch. Based on the evidence presented, I trust that will never happen to our most manly, albeit liberated, host.

  11. 11

    I dunno. She’s photographing big, thick, turgid genitals.
    Sending you a message mebbe?

  12. 12
    Azuma Hazuki

    It just looks like a big curtain pull to me, or a bell rope. Like something George of the Jungle would pull if he were really wealthy and snooty and Ape was forced to, well, wear a monkey suit.

  13. 13
    chigau (違う)

    About what?
    Please explain.

  14. 14

    THIS atheist will probably be seeing that in his nightmares.

    Cold, Comfort.

  15. 15

    The common name for that long stem of bananas is a ‘hand’. No, I don’t know why but it seems appropriate reading some of the comments here. :-)

  16. 16
    Thumper: Who Presents Boxes Which Are Not Opened

    What is that thing on the banana plant?

    Oh! Professor! Professor! *waves hand in air*

    …Is it Ray Comfort?

  17. 17
    Antiochus Epiphanes

    It’s a flower, sicko.

  18. 18

    All this talk of Bananaman makes me think of Cold Comfort Farm.
    “I saw something nasty in the woodshed”.

  19. 19

    Now I have the The Banana Boat Song running through my head with a different meaning for ‘tally me banana.’

  20. 20
    Ogvorbis: Still failing at being human.

    I look at that photo, the striping on the stalk, the pointy end, and wonder why the zebra is hiding in a bunch of banananananananananas.

  21. 21

    It’s a dowsing pendulum. The Cavendish banana was bred not only to fit one’s hand and be Gods perfect food, it was also created to foretell the future.

    Didn’t you read Ray Comforts peer-reviewed article on Bananamancy?

  22. 22

    No, it means you should brave the elements and pollinate her.

  23. 23
    Elisabeth Griggs

    A good opportunity to turn you onto the bold brave and talented science geek/artist Maria Sybilla Merian, who went off to Surinam in the 1700s to paint plants and pollinators. Bananas, too. Here’s some pictures


  24. 24

    #17 Antiochus Epiphanes
    It’s a flower, sicko.

    That’s what I said “big, thick, turgid genitals”

  25. 25

    Man, maybe I’m just not enough of a botanist, but when I look at that thing I don’t think “sex”, I think “alien abduction”.

  26. 26

    #22 Cynikal:

    “What do we do now?”
    “We wait for the bee.”

    – Princess Libido and Ficus Pandorata, in the Quark episode “All the Emperor’s Quasi-Norms, Part I”.

    Quark: All the Emperor’s Quasi-Norms, Part I

  27. 27
    cm's changeable moniker (quaint, if not charming)

    JohnnyCanuck @#7, touché.

  28. 28

    Onamission5 @ 2

    I don’t know about drinking the nectar, but that flower IS for eating.


  29. 29

    Bananas are functionally dioecious – the female flowers occur at the first part of the inflorescence – where the bananas form. When the females run out, the male flowers start – hence the long stretch of naked stem before the bud sheathes holding the remaining male flowers. Most cultivated bananas are sterile hybrids – mules. They produce fruits parthenocarpically from the female flowers which is why you never see real banana seeds in the fruits we get at the grocery. Real banana seeds are like bird shot. They are hard, black and look like off-round spheres about 2 – 3 mm in diameter.

  30. 30
    Azuma Hazuki


    The one with the paper squeaky-thingy is Ray Comfort :)

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