Sunday, October 04, 2020

The Origin Of Date Palm

Date palm tree (Phoenix dactylifera L.) is one of the oldest fruits grown in the arid region of Southwest Asia and North Africa.

The exact area of origin of the date palm was in or near what is now the country of Iraq, but date cultivation spread to many countries starting in ancient times.

In term of terminology the name of the species dactylifera means “finger-bearing” which refers to the fruit clusters produced by this plant. Dactylifera is a grouping of the Greek word dactylus, means “finger,” and the Latin word ferous, mean “bearing”.

Date is one of the oldest known fruit crops and the earliest record from Iraq (Mesopotamia) shows that date culture was probably cultivated as early as 3000 BCE. The date palm tree was praised and cherished as is evident from the paintings and sculptures of ancient civilizations of the Sumerians, Assyrians, Babylonians, and Egyptians, and subsequently by the Greeks and the Romans that populated the Mediterranean basin where the Phoenix species are commonly grown.

Date palm fruit was consumed in Mesopotamian times since 4000 BC and by the Egyptians perhaps during 3000–2000 BC. It is believed that the African date palm (P. reclinata) or the Indian date palm (P. sylvestris) or both may have been the progenitor of date palm.

Later, date cultivation spread throughout the Arabian Peninsula, North Africa, and the Middle East. Date culture had spread into Egypt by the mid of the 2nd millennium BC. The expansion of Islam brought together the culture of date cultivation to southern Spain and Pakistan.
The Origin Of Date Palm