|Species||Musa × paradisiaca|
|Hybrid parentage||M. acuminata × M. balbisiana|
|Cultivar group||AAB Group, Plantain subgroup|
|Origin||Southeast Asia, South Asia, West Africa|
"True" plantains are a group of cultivars of the genus Musa (bananas and plantains) placed in the Plantain subgroup of the AAB genome group. The term "plantain" can refer to all the banana cultivars which are normally eaten after cooking, rather than raw (see cooking banana), or it can refer to members of other subgroups of Musa cultivars, such as the Pacific plantains, although in Africa there is little to no distinction made between the two, as both are commonly cooked. True plantains are divided into four groups based on their bunch type: French, French Horn, False Horn, and Horn plantains.
Each bunch type has a variety of cultivars associated with it:
- French cultivars: 'Obino l'Ewai' (Nigeria), 'Nendran' (India), 'Dominico' (Colombia)
- French Horn cultivars: 'Batard' (Cameroon), 'Mbang Okon' (Nigeria)
- False Horn cultivars: 'Agbagba' and 'Orishele' (Nigeria), 'Dominico-Harton' (Colombia)
- Horn cultivars: 'Ishitim' (Nigeria), 'Pisang Tandok' (Malaysia)
- The IITA Reference Guide for "Plantain cultivation under West African Conditions" (1990, page 14) contains photos of different plantain types.
- IITA's Research Guide 66 "Morphology and Growth of Plantain and Banana" (1997, but no longer available online, page 10) contains figures of the plantain inflorescence types.
- (UK) IPA(key): /ˈplant(e)ɪn/
- (US) IPA(key): /ˈplæntɪn/, IPA(key): /ˈplæn.teɪn/
From Middle English planteyne, planteyn, from Anglo-Norman plainteine et al., Old French plaintain, from Latin plantāginem (“plantain”), accusative of plantāgō, from planta (“sole”), a nasalized form of Proto-Indo-European *plat (“flat; to spread...