Is Banana a Herb or a Tree? Interesting garden facts

Is Banana a Herb or a Tree?- Banana is a Herb. It belongs to the genus MUSA. Banana is biologically a Herbecious flowering plant. The banana fruit we eat is actually a modified berry. Don’t worry this is nothing to do with old ancient maniacs. This modification is a result of more than 1000 years of successive evolution in banana species.

A Banana plant is commonly called as a Tree or Banana tree due to its big size. Generally, we don’t consider anything as big as a banana tree as a simple herb. But this true, the genus Musa contains many such Herbaceous plant varieties.
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Is Banana a Herb or a Tree
Is Banana a Herb or a Tree?

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Why banana is a herb?

Banana is a Herb defined in the genus Musa. There are many reasons to approve this statement. The most common is the structure. Banana has a soft green plant body containing more than 70% water in it.

Every banana plant has a single main stem called trunk. We think of it as a stem but actually it is not. Banana stem or trunk is not a true stem. It is in fact a pseudostem made by tightly bound leaves. No need to trust me. You can check it on your own. Just cut a piece of banana trunk and see all the different layers of leaves in it. You can even peel those apart like an onion.

Also, The entire plant is soft and green. No specific branches observed in any type of banana grown worldwide. Why? coz it doesn’t have even one real stem. Altogether banana plant is a Rhizome a relative to ginger a herbaceous plant but not a tree.

Do You Know?– Banana is also called Plantain. Also, It is one of the largest Herbaceous plants on the earth.

Why Can’t we Consider banana as a tree?

A banana plant is soft and has not hardwood body. Such plants are described as Herbs. A tree must have a woody stem, few branches, and a solid structure. Nothing like that is present in a banana plant.

We can call it a banana herb instead of a Banana tree. It is quite odd in hearing still a factually correct statement.

A plant can be termed as a tree only when it acquires a certain height with real hardwood branches. Until then it is just a simple small plant.

Characteristics of Herbs in Banana

There are 3 specific characters that define a banana plant as a herbaceous plant. These are-

  1. Pseudostem
  2. Rizozome root structure
  3. Soft Green Plant Body


Pseudo means false and Stem is the branch of a plant to support its entire structure. The whole banana plant that we see is a compressed bundle of leaf structure.

Technically, The body of the banana plant is a group of leaves. It is not a branch or stem, so it can not be classified as a tree or anything other than a herb.

Rizozome Root Structure

Banana plant has a soft Rizozome structure at its base. This structure connects the roots to the leaves. This structure is similar to a ginger plant.

New baby banana plants grow from this Rizozome. Only Herbaceous plants are known to have a Rizozome structure.


what type of plant is a banana tree?– Banana is a Herbaceous plant. It is not a Tree. People call it a tree due to its big size. It is just the size that gives the Banana plant the title of a tree.

why is a banana plant called a herb?- Technically, banana is a Herb. It belongs to the genus Musa. This genus contains most of the flowering herbs. Also, there is a significant corm or rhizome root that makes it a Herb. Banana has a soft stem made with bundled leaves. All these features are significant for Herbaceous plants.

Is the banana plant a shrub?- No, Banana is not a Shrub. It does not have any woody stem. Banana has No distinguished branches. In fact, It does not have any real branch. Therefore, we cannot consider a Banana pant as a shrub.

Before leaving You should read this: Bitter Gourd: How to Germinate, Grow and Care bitter melons

Final Words

Banana is a Herb. We can call it a tree but Banana plant is not a tree. It is a pseudo tree having a pseudostem. This is all you need to know. The debate banana being a Herb or tree has a simple straight answer- It is a Herbaceous Plant that belongs to the Musa family. Banana is one of the largest edible herb plants. It is also called the Plantain tree.

What do you think about the Banana plant? write your views and suggestions below in comment section.

Keep Reading Keep gardening. live green!


Hi, My name is Sukant. I am an I.T professional. Gardening for me is not just a hobby, it's a way of living life with nature. My Ancestors were Commercial farmers: So I personally feel attached to the green. I am not an expert, I'm here only to share my gardening experiences. It's always Refreshing.

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