Did you know that there are blue bananas? Also known as ice cream bananas, they’re increasingly popular thanks to their creamy texture and a flavor that reminds of vanilla ice cream.
Before they go ripe, these bananas have a bluish or blue-green color and are described as fluffier than the traditional bananas we mostly consume.
These Blue Java bananas are native to Hawaii, Southeast Asia, and some parts of Central American. Although they grow in tropical climates, they’re more tolerant to colder temperatures as long as they get the needed amount of sunlight than other varieties.
Why Is the Blue Java Banana so Popular?
This type of banana variety is popular because of its similarity with vanilla ice cream, not just in taste, but also in consistency. The name Blue Java is believed to be an inspiration from the peel’s aqua blue color while the fruit is still unripe.
A sweet and appealing aroma, these bananas have a frosted tinge all over their peel which makes them look as if they’re frozen. The inside flesh is a combination of white and yellow. You can find it under several names in different parts of the world.
For example, they’re known as ice cream bananas in Hawaii, cenizo in Central America, while Fiji calls it the Hawaiian Banana.
Could I Grow My Supply of Blue Java Bananas?
Blue Java bananas are hardy variety which can succeed in temperatures as low as 20 degrees F.
In the US, they’re suitable for USDA zones 9b through 11, even though some farmers also grow it from zones 8 through 11.
Expect a fully mature Blue Java tree to reach between 15 and 20 feet in height. When planted as a pseudostem, around 9 months are needed from the time the leaves appear until the fruits become mature.
Despite not being overly demanding, make sure you meet these needs so that you optimize their growth:
- Bananas like high moisture and a warm and rich soil
- Provide them with partial to full sunlight
- Water them often in the growing season, but not excessively
- Avoid water gathering at the bottom because it can cause the root to rot
- Don’t forget NPK fertilizer with nutrients in the 3:1:6 ratio
- For a foot tall plant, add a cup of fertilizer monthly
- Spray it around the roots and for every extra two feet of growth, increase the mix by a cup of fertilizer
How to Consume Blue Java Bananas?
In addition to eating them raw, feel free to add them to smoothies, to grill them with different veggies and fruits, as well as boiled, steamed or baked.
And, of course, since it tastes a lot like vanilla ice cream, put a banana in the fridge for an hour and then eat it as if were a cooling treat!