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Crops & Vegetables


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  • Crops & Vegetables

Aloe Vera

Aloe Vera health benefit

Also called "the elixir of youth" by the Russians,"the herb of immortality" by the old Egyptians or

Saturday, 23 April 2011 Comments


Aparajita (Clitoria tern

Aparajita has several synonyms in Ayurvedic scriptures like gokarnika, ardrakarni, girikarnika, supu

Saturday, 23 April 2011 Comments



Image - Arecanut

PlantCharacteristics The arecanut palms grow under a variety of climatic and so

Monday, 14 March 2011 Comments

Ash Gourd

ASH GOURD (Benincasa his

Image - ASH GOURD (Benincasa his

PlantCharacteristics It is annual vine trailing on the soil surface. It is also k

Monday, 14 March 2011 Comments

Crops & Vegetables


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Ataulfos have a very small seed, so there is a high flesh to seed ratio.

Flavor: Sweet and creamy
Texture: Smooth, firm flesh with no fibers
Color: Vibrant yellow
Shape: Small, flattened oval shape
Ripening Cues: Skin turns to a deep golden color and small wrinkles appear when fully ripe. Squeeze gently to judge ripeness.
Peak Availability: March to July
Primary Source Country: Mexico



The Francis grows on small farms throughout Haiti.

Flavor: Rich, spicy and sweet 
Texture: Soft, juicy flesh with fibers 
Color: Bright yellow skin with green overtones
Shape: Oblong and sigmoid S-shape
Ripening Cues: Green overtones diminish and the yellow becomes more golden as the Francis ripens. Squeeze gently to judge ripeness.
Peak Availability: May to July 
Primary Source Country: Haiti



The fruiting of the Haden mango in 1910 inspired the creation of a large-scale mango industry in South Florida. The industry has since then been greatly reduced by the impact of development and hurricanes.

Flavor: Rich, with aromatic overtones
Texture: Firm flesh due to fine fibers
Color: Bright red with green and yellow overtones and small white dots
Shape: Medium to large with an oval to round shape
Ripening Cues: Green areas of the mango turn to yellow as it ripens. 
Squeeze gently to judge ripeness.
Peak Availability: April and May
Primary Source Country: Mexico



Keitts are popular in Asian cultures, where they are enjoyed it in its mature-green stage or even as pickles.

Flavor: Sweet and fruity
Texture: Firm, juicy flesh with limited fibers
Color: Dark to medium green, sometimes with a pink blush over a small portion of the mango
Shape: Large oval shape
Ripening Cues: Skin stays green even when ripe. Squeeze gently to judge ripeness.
Peak Availability: August and September
Primary Source Countries: Mexico, United States



Originating from Florida in the 1940’s, Kents are ideal mangos for juicing and drying.

Flavor: Sweet and rich
Texture: Juicy, tender flesh with limited fibers
Color: Dark green and often has a dark red blush over a small portion of the mango
Shape: Large oval shape
Ripening Cues Kents have yellow undertones or dots that cover more of the mango as it ripens. Squeeze gently to judge ripeness. 
Peak Availability: January to March and June to August
Primary Source Countries: Mexico, Ecuador, Peru


Tommy Atkins

Hailing originally from Florida, Tommy Atkins is the most widely grown commercial variety coming into the United States.

Flavor: Mildly and sweet 
Texture: Firm flesh due to fibers throughout
Color: A dark red blush often covers much of the fruit with green and 
orange-yellow accents
Shape: Medium to large with oval or oblong shape
Ripening Cues: This mango may not provide any visual cues. Squeeze gently to judge ripeness.
Peak Availability: March to July and October to January
Primary Source Countries: Mexico, Guatemala, Brazil, Ecuador, Peru

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Where are bananas grown?

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We have available data on banana exports dating back to 2007: it may have changed in the meantime and we urge you to have a look at the official FDA website for updated figures.

With that said, banana crop distribution generally doesn't change much from year to year and the following list is probably still very accurate.

What countries do bananas grow in?

Top banana producing nations - 2007
(in million metric tons)
India 21.77
China 8.04
Philippines 7.48
Brazil 7.10
Ecuador 6.00
Indonesia 5.46
Tanzania 3.50
Costa Rica 2.08
Thailand 2.00
Mexico 1.96
Burundi 1.60
Guatemala 1.57
Vietnam 1.36
Kenya 1.19
Bangladesh 1.00
Honduras 0.91
Egypt 0.88
Papua New Guinea 0.87
Cameroon 0.86
Uganda 0.62
World total 72.5
Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations

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Bananas Nutrition Facts

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Bananas, raw

Refuse: 36% (Skin)
Scientific Name: Musa X paradisiaca
NDB No: 09040 (Nutrient values and weights are for edible portion)

NutrientUnitsValue per
100 grams
of Data
Water g 74.91 20 0.286
Energy kcal 89 0
Energy kj 371 0
Protein g 1.09 12 0.022
Total lipid (fat) g 0.33 19 0.067
Ash g 0.82 12 0.03
Carbohydrate, by difference g 22.84 0
Fiber, total dietary g 2.6 13 0.129
Sugars, total g 12.23 8 1.034
Sucrose g 2.39 8 0.546
Glucose (dextrose) g 4.98 8 0.806
Fructose g 4.85 8 0.658
Lactose g 0.00 8 0
Maltose g 0.01 8 0.014
Galactose g 0.00 8 0
Starch g 5.38 8 0.564
Calcium, Ca mg 5 45 0.047
Iron, Fe mg 0.26 42 0.001
Magnesium, Mg mg 27 45 0.475
Phosphorus, P mg 22 45 0.171
Potassium, K mg 358 45 1.911
Sodium, Na mg 1 45 0.395
Zinc, Zn mg 0.15 45 0.001
Copper, Cu mg 0.078 45 0.011
Manganese, Mn mg 0.270 45 0.007
Fluoride, F mcg 2.2 1
Selenium, Se mcg 1.0 31 0.289
Vitamin C, total ascorbic acid mg 8.7 8 0.434
Thiamin mg 0.031 12 0.006
Riboflavin mg 0.073 12 0.008
Niacin mg 0.665 12 0.002
Pantothenic acid mg 0.334 12 0.01
Vitamin B-6 mg 0.367 12 0.01
Folate, total mcg 20 11 0.472
Folic acid mcg 0 0
Folate, food mcg 20 11 0.472
Folate, DFE mcg_DFE 20 0
Choline, total mg 9.8 0
Betaine mg 0.1 1
Vitamin B-12 mcg 0.00 0
Vitamin B-12, added mcg 0.00 0
Vitamin A, IU IU 64 0
Vitamin A, RAE mcg_RAE 3 0
Retinol mcg 0 0
Vitamin E (alpha-tocopherol) mg 0.10 15 0.054
Vitamin E, added mg 0.00 0
Tocopherol, beta mg 0.00 15 0
Tocopherol, gamma mg 0.02 15 0.015
Tocopherol, delta mg 0.01 15 0.01
Vitamin K (phylloquinone) mcg 0.5 6 0.075
Fatty acids, total saturated g 0.112 0
4:0 g 0.000 0
6:0 g 0.000 0
8:0 g 0.000 0
10:0 g 0.001 4
12:0 g 0.002 4
14:0 g 0.002 4
16:0 g 0.102 5
18:0 g 0.005 5
Fatty acids, total monounsaturated g 0.032 0
16:1 undifferentiated g 0.010 5
18:1 undifferentiated g 0.022 5
20:1 g 0.000 0
22:1 undifferentiated g 0.000 0
Fatty acids, total polyunsaturated g 0.073 0
18:2 undifferentiated g 0.046 5
18:3 undifferentiated g 0.027 5
18:4 g 0.000 0
20:4 undifferentiated g 0.000 0
20:5 n-3 g 0.000 0
22:5 n-3 g 0.000 0
22:6 n-3 g 0.000 0
Cholesterol mg 0 0
Phytosterols mg 16 0
Amino acids
Tryptophan g 0.009 0
Threonine g 0.028 0
Isoleucine g 0.028 0
Leucine g 0.068 0
Lysine g 0.050 0
Methionine g 0.008 0
Cystine g 0.009 0
Phenylalanine g 0.049 0
Tyrosine g 0.009 0
Valine g 0.047 0
Arginine g 0.049 0
Histidine g 0.077 0
Alanine g 0.040 0
Aspartic acid g 0.124 0
Glutamic acid g 0.152 0
Glycine g 0.038 0
Proline g 0.028 0
Serine g 0.040 0
Alcohol, ethyl g 0.0 0
Caffeine mg 0 0
Theobromine mg 0 0
Carotene, beta mcg 26 10 2.167
Carotene, alpha mcg 25 8 4.438
Cryptoxanthin, beta mcg 0 6 0
Lycopene mcg 0 6 0
Lutein + zeaxanthin mcg 22 6 2.52

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How to Store and Select Bananas

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Bananas are usually harvested when green. In stores, you can usually find a range of colors from green to yellow, with brown spots. Your choice should be based on when you want to eat the banana: greener ones last more days, while yellow and brown-spotted bananas should be eaten in a few days.

Bananas should be quite firm, bright, and the peel should not be crushed or cut. Their stems and tips should be intact. The size of the banana does not affect its quality, so just choose the size that fits you best

Bananas are very fragile and should be stored in a place when they will be protected from concussions. They should be stored at room temperature to allow for the ripening process to complete. Do not store them in the refrigerator when they are green, or this will irreversibly interrupt the ripening process (and it will not revert even if they are kept at room temperature afterwards)

If you need to speed up the ripening process, you can place the banana in a paper wrap with an apple. While you should not keep green bananas in the fridge, it is actually a good idea to store ripe bananas there. Their peel will become progressively brown, but the pulp will not be affected. To improve the flavor, it is best to keep bananas at room temperature for a while

If you wish to store bananas for a long time (up to 2 months), it is possible to freeze them. To do this, simply remove the peel and sprinkle some lemon juice over the pulp to prevent discoloration; then wrap them in plastic

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Health Benefits of Bananas

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Bananas consist mainly of sugars (glucose, fructose and sucrose) and fiber, which makes them ideal for an immediate and slightly prolonged source of energy

Reducing Depression
Bananas contain tryptophan, an aminoacid that can be converted to serotonin, leading to improved mood
Bananas are relatively high in iron, which helps the body's hemoglobin function
Constipation and Diarrhea
Due to their content in fiber, they help restore a normal bowel function. In addition, diarrhea usually depletes your body of important electrolytes (of which the most important is potassium, contained in high amounts in bananas). They also contain pectin, a soluble fiber (hydrocolloid) that can help normalize movement through the digestive tract.
Eyesight Protection
Research published in the Archives of Ophthalmology has proven that adults consuming at least 3 servings of fruit per day have a reduced risk (by 36%) of developing age-related macular degeneration (ARMD), the primary cause of vision loss in older adults, compared to persons who consume less than 1.5 servings of fruit daily.
Healthy Bones
Bananas are an exceptionally rich source of fructooligosaccharide, a compound that nourishes probiotic (friendly) bacteria in the colon. These beneficial bacteria produce enzymes that increase our digestive ability and protect us from unhealthy bacteria infections. Thanks to fructooligosaccharides, probiotic bacteria can increase both in number and functionality, increasing our body's ability to absorb calcium.
In addition, green bananas contain indigestible short chain fatty acids (SCFAs) that are very nutrient to the cells that make up the mucosa of the stomach. These cells, when healthy, absorb calcium much more efficiently
Healthy Kidney
About 190,000 cases of kidney cancer are diagnosed each year.
Research published in the International Journal of Cancer has shown that daily consumption of whole fruits and vegetables, especially bananas, is highly protective to kidney health. The results show that, over a long timeframe (13.4 years), women eating more than 2.5 servings of fruits and vegetable per day cut their risk of kidney cancer by 40%. Among the fruits, bananas were especially protective. Women eating bananas four to six times a week halved their risk of developing the disease compared to those who did not eat this fruit. The conclusion of the study is that frequent consumption of fruits and vegetables, especially bananas, cabbage and root vegetables, may reduce risk of kidney cancer. This is because bananas and many root vegetables contain especially high amounts of antioxidant phenolic compounds, while cabbage is rich in sulfur, necessary for effective detoxification of potential carcinogens.
Blood Pressure
Bananas are extremely high in potassium (about 4673mg), yet very low in sodium (1mg), thus having a perfect ratio for preventing high blood pressure. So much so, the US Food and Drug Administration has just allowed the banana industry to make official claims for the fruit's ability to reduce the risk of blood pressure and stroke.
Bananas have a natural antacid effect in the body, so if you suffer from heartburn, try eating a banana for soothing relief.
Morning Sickness
Snacking on bananas between meals helps to keep blood-sugar levels up and avoid morning sickness.
Bananas can also help people trying to give up smoking. They contain vitamins B6 and B12 they contain, as well as potassium and magnesium: these substances help the body recover from the effects of nicotine withdrawal.
This is the only raw fruit that can be eaten without distress in over-chronicle cases. It also helps reduce acidity and reduces irritation. Bananas stimulate the cells on the internal stomach lining to produce a thicker mucus (which protects against acid). Additionally, bananas contain protease inhibitors that help eliminate bacteria in the stomach that have been pinpointed as a primary cause of ulcers.
Bananas are high in B vitamins that have been shows to improve nerve function
Mosquito Bites
Many people report that rubbing the inside of a banana peel on a mosquito bite is very effective in reducing itching and swelling
Stress Relief
Bananas are high in potassium, which helps normalize the hearthbeat and regulate the body's water balance. During periods of high stress, our body's potassium levels tend to be rapidly depleted: eating bananas is a healthy way to rebalance them without using drugs
Stroke Risk
According to a study in The New England Journal of Medicine, eating bananas as part of a regular diet can reduce the risk of death by strokes by as much as 40%

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