A South Darenth couple were amazed when a banana plant in their garden started bearing fruit.

Debbie Silvestri and husband Gianni, of Mallys Place, first planted a banana tree in their garden around five years ago.

While banana trees can grow in the UK, the climate is such that it is rare for them to flower and produce fruit.

Mrs Silvestri said: "About four or five years ago my brother said: 'do you want a couple of banana trees for the garden'.

"We planted them and they multiplied all around the garden. There were 15 or 20. We had to start digging them up and giving them to people.

"Then a few weeks ago we saw a plant growing by the vegetable patch, and to our amazement it was producing tiny bananas."

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The 47-year-old added: "It was very suprising. It was like 'oh my god'.

"It must somehow be warm enough in that part of the garden for it to happen."

Guy Barter, chief horticultural advisor of the Royal Horticultural Society, said: "It is unusual, but not unheard of for banana to flower and even fruit in Britain. 

"This summer has been warm and favourable for bananas, but all the same the gardener has done really good job."