The first banana we know of was planted in NZ in 1890, but now we have all sorts of wonderfully exotic fruits growing here, RNZ reports. Chair of Tropical Fruit Growers Hugh Rose has an impressive stable of interesting and exotic fruits growing on his Northland property. His is an avid collector, having over 40 varieties, including pineapple, pawpaw, the prolific and juicy babaco, capuli cherries, and dragon fruit. Other varieties on the block include sugar cane, rose apples, mangos and the prized, but slow-growing, Brazilian grape tree.