15

After peeling a banana almost always there are long and removable fibers(?) on the banana (marked by red arrows). What are they called?

enter image description here

  • 2
    In general, you need to let us know whether you want to know if there's a word in common use for this, or if you're after a technical term. It's not always clear from your questions. – Tᴚoɯɐuo Mar 11 '18 at 14:29
  • I didn't assume that should be two terms (professional and colloquial) for that. But in retrospect I would like to know both. – Judicious Allure Mar 11 '18 at 14:32
  • A good addition is the word in your native language. If there is no word in your native language, you could explain why you expect their to be one in English – James K Mar 11 '18 at 16:15
  • 1. Maybe there is one in my native language. 2. English is richer in vocabulary than the most of the languages and obviously my native language. – Judicious Allure Mar 11 '18 at 16:23
  • 2
    Out of curiosity, is there a word in your native language for this? If yes, what is it? I would have never considered that there was a name for this. And if I did, I would have probably used "fibers" as you have. – Kodos Johnson Mar 11 '18 at 19:14
21

From a HuffPost article titled "FYI, Those Annoying Strings On Bananas Are Called Phloem Bundles":

We’re talking about those annoying white strings on bananas, or more technically, “phloem bundles.” (Appetizing name, right?)

If the term “phloem” sounds familiar to you, it’s probably because you were taught about phloem and xylem when you learned about plant biology in middle school science class. Those two terms describe the complex tissues that transport food and water in a plant, providing it with sufficient food, nutrients, minerals and water to grow.

So essentially, these hideous strings distribute nutrients up and down the banana as it grows, allowing us to eat the delicious bananas that we so love.

Therefore, in an informal conversation between friends, etc., I would expect to hear banana strings. On the other hand, if you're writing an academic article or trying to come across as a know-all in an informal conversation, use the term phloem bundles.

  • 5
    I call them strings, and I would not recommend calling them phloem bundles in informal conversations – even when you do want to appear as a know-it-all. – J.R. Mar 11 '18 at 21:29
  • Interesting, even as a native speaker I never knew that. However I wonder if our language discriminates between the “thin” phloem strings (edible) and the “thick” ones (horrible and bitter)? – Chris Melville Mar 11 '18 at 23:39

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.