Muscat, The Omani man has a close relationship with the date palm tree since ancient times. He pays attention and care to the fruits that constitute his and his family’s food throughout the seasons. He benefits from its fronds to make handicraft products that are passed on to the generations, which represent an additional revenue for him and a commodity for the markets, particularly those related to agriculture and date palms harvest.

It is harvest time for the date palms, after going through many stages, first the pollination (date pollination) to the harvesting stage (the harvest of dates) for storage and eating during the winter season or for sale.

The pollination stage starts after what is locally called “Teyah Al Sarda” (a very cold period) with some varieties of the dates, locally called as “Al Battash, Al Meznaj, Al Manhi, Al Gidmi, Al Naghal, Umm Al Sala, Qash Thamid, and Qash Qaroot”.

Mubarak bin Ali al-Galandani said, “The pollination stage begins after the pollen sprouts. The farmer directly places 1 and 10 or slightly more date palm clusters in the pollen, or ties them up in the pollen with a light strip to enable the tape to open gradually with the growth of date until it is finally released from the material attached to it. This method is used only for the types of palms, which have a long cluster like “Al Khenezi and “Al Khasab”.

He told Oman News Agency (ONA) that the process of selecting the plant variety in which the pollination process is carried out is important for the success of the pollination process, such as selection of varieties characterized by the quality of pollination.

The period of waiting for the sprouting takes more than two months to begin the second stage, the pulling down of the date stalk to the level where the farmer can reach in the harvest time.

The second stage of two types: the first is to pull down the stalk and put it on the leaves. The second one is to pull down the stalk below the leaves and have them ties.

After 4 months of the second stage, the harvest starts with the first picking of the palm.

The process of the pollination process varies according to the type and quality of the plant, the date palm, the weather and humidity. The process takes several days depending on the farmers dealing with it. Some prefer to wait for the opening of all pollen and others prefer doing it individually for each pollen. Farmers are warned not to delay the process of the date of pollination till the time when the clusters get green in colour because it causes the failure of the process as in the case of the locally called “Al Naghal” except in some species, such types locally known as “Al Khenezi” and “Al Khasab”.

Source: Oman News Agency