Date palm pollination season starts

MUSCAT: Omanis has been closely associated 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 in the winter season or for sale.
The pollination stage starts after what is locally called “Tayah 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, and many other types.
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 Khisab.
The process of selecting the plant variety in which the pollination process is carried out is important for the success of the breeding process, such as selection of varieties characterised by the quality of pollination, such as the tall cluster Janadid or Al Fardh. It is required that the pollen be open and full of the pollen. The plant should not be damaged. The farmers avoid pollination process in the rainy days due to the failure of the process and the Palm does not benefit from them.
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 tie it up.
After four months of the second stage, the harvest starts with the first picking of the palm.
The process of the pollination varies according to the type and quality of the plant, the date palm, the weather and humidity which takes several days. Some prefer to wait for the opening of all the 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 Al Naghal, except in some species such Al Khenezi and Al Khisab. — ONA