Bananas go beyond being a convenient snack: They can aid with sleep and even help soothe an upset stomach. But what about the peels? Do they get tossed right in the trashcan, like any old wrapper? Unfortunately, for most people, the answer seems to be yes. According to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, trashed food accounts for more than 20 percent of all methane emissions (food emits that potent greenhouse gas as it decomposes in landfills), a major contributor to climate change. But banana peels don't have to be trash. Sustainable America established the following 10 fun facts designed to help you rethink the peels from America's favorite fruit.
Wrap a banana peel around your growing tomatoes so they can absorb nutrients from it throughout the season.
Soak a banana peel in a large jar of water, then combine one part of the resulting banana peel water with five parts of regular water in a watering can to fertilize indoor plants, including these 7 Plants That Purify Indoor Air.
Banana peels break down quickly and add lots of nutrients to the soil for your flower and vegetable garden.
Rub the peel over bug bites, poison ivy rashes, or psoriasis patches to reduce itchiness and promote healing.
Add some ground, dried banana peels to the feed for chickens, pigs, rabbits, and cows.
Use the sour flavor of banana-peel vinegar on salads, to flavor water and tea, or in any recipe that calls for vinegar.
Add a ripe banana peel to a roasting pan to keep boneless, skinless cuts of healthy meat from toughening up and drying out during cooking.
Get even more nutrients, fiber, and antioxidants from the fruit by mastering the 5 Easy Ways To Cook With Banana Peels. You can boil the peel for 10 minutes and put it through a juicer or blend it with other fruits. Be sure to clean the peel first.
Put peels from overripe bananas on a raised platform in the garden and watch them flock to the sweetness. Beware that bees and wasps may be attracted as well, but try the 6 Ways To Keep Wasps Away From You if they become a problem.
Rub the pithy side of a banana peel on leather shoes, jackets, or furniture and buff with a soft cloth. Blend a peel with water and use the mixture to shine silver.