THE COCOA-NUT TREEaTHE BANANA
From this cutting, or from the pores which are left uncovered, a saccharine liquid flows, which is sweetish and agreeable to the palate before it has fermented. After it has passed the fermentation it is carried to the still, and submitted to the process of distillation, it then becomes the alcoholic liquor known in the country as cocoa-wine.
Besides these uses, the cocoa-nut shell, when burned, gives the tine black colour which the Indians make use of to dye their straw hats.
The banana is an herbaceous plant, without any wocdy matter : the trunk of each is formed of leaves placed one above the other. This trunk rises from twelve to fifteen feet from the ground, and then spreads out into long broad leaves, not less than five or six feet each. From the middle of these leaves the flower rises, and also the spike (rgime). By this word is to be understood a hundred of large bananas growing from the same stalk, forming together a long branch, that turns towards the sun.
Before the fruit has reached its full ripeness, the spike is cut, and becomes fit for use. The part of the plant which is in the earth is a kind of large root, from which proceed successively thirty shoots, and each shoot ought not to have more than one spike, or bunch ; it is then cut fronting the sun, and as all the shoots rising from the same trunk are of different ages, there are fruits to be found in all the stages of growth ; so that every month or fort-
Ths Banana.Ths Banana.