- Family name: Arecaceae
- Japanese name: NATSUMEYASHI
- English name: date palm
- Scientific name: Phoenix dactilifera
- Country of origin: North Africa or Persian Gulf region (cultivated on the Arabian Peninsula)
It is an evergreen tree with height of 30–36 m. Dioecious. The species in the Arid Land Research Center blooms once annually in April–June. It is a plant with tolerance to environmental stress (i.e., dry, salt, high temperature, strong light tolerance) and can be cultivated in the temperature range of −5 to 50°C. Propagation is performed by offshoot, seeding, or cell culturing.
It is one of the oldest cultivated crops, and in the Arabian Peninsula and North Africa where it originated, it was used for agroforestry, and vegetables and cereals were cultivated under the shade of date palms to avoid strong sunlight. The fruit (dates) is high in sugar content and is rich in minerals (potassium, calcium, and iron). In the Arabian Peninsula, northern Africa, and dry areas of western Asia, dates are closely related to the eating habits of the people and are sold by variety and production area in date specialty shops in towns. There are 3 types: software, semi-dry, and dry; the dry type is soaked in water or milk to soften it before eating or immersed in water and semi-fermented to make juice. In Japan, it is used as a raw material for okonomiyaki sauce. In the eastern part of Sudan, the fibrous bark is packed in the mouth of a coffee pot and used as a filter.
Fruit (food, beverages, medicine, animal feed), seed (food, medicine, animal feed), seed oil (food, cosmetics, medicine, soap), flower (especially female flower bud, food), leaf (new leaf: food, baskets, rugs, brooms, hats, fans, fuel), pith (food), trunk (building material, fuel), bark (fiber: filter), sap (food: sugar, molasses, alcoholic beverages), gum (medicine), root (medicine)
Barreveld, W.H. 1993. Date Palm Products. Food and Agriculture Organization
of the United Nations, Rome, Italy. (http://www.fao.org/docrep/t0681e/t0681e00.htm#con)
Chao, C.T. and Krueger,R.R. 2007. The date palm (Phoenix dactylifera L.): Overview of biology, uses, and cultivation. HortScience 42: 1077-1082.
Lim, T.K. 2012. Phoenix dactylifera. In: Edible Medicinal and Non-Medicinal Plants. Volume 1, Fruits. Springer
, Netherlands, pp.407-418.
Zaid, A. 2002. Date Palm Cultivation. Food and Agriculture Organization
of the United Nations, Rome, Italy. (http://www.fao.org/docrep/006/y4360e/y4360e00.htm#Contents)
石山俊・縄田浩志（編）．2013．アラブのなりわい生態系 第2巻.ナツメヤシ. 臨川書店, 京都．
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