The date palm (Latin Phoenix) is a plant belonging to the Palm family. Includes 14 species according to The Plant List and 17 according to the All Plants of the World encyclopedia. The date palm is native to Africa and Eurasia.
The first mentions of it date back to the 6th century BC. Even then, it was grown on the territory of modern Iraq.
Representatives of the genus are mainly trees with one trunk, but there are also several, as well as shrubs. In its natural environment, the palm tree grows in regions with hot climates, and in our latitudes it is successfully grown at home. The plant has excellent decorative properties and is a decoration for any interior.
Other names for the date: The name comes from the Greek words φοῖ (phoinix) or φονικο (phoinikos), which is why many call the date palm - "phoenix" or simply "date". The Egyptians deservedly call her "the green nurse of Egypt."
The date palm is a popular variety. There are many varieties of date palms, but two types are considered the most popular:
The Canary date (lat.Phoenix canariensis) is an eloquent name that indicates that the Canary Islands are the favorite habitat of the plant. This palm tree adores rocky terrain, which receives a lot of sun. A feature of the plant is the huge feathery leaves of a blue-green hue. In nature, the Canary date grows several tens of meters in height, and the trunk grows up to 1 m in diameter. In indoor conditions, the dimensions of the palm tree will be more modest. The plant can bloom only in its natural environment.
Date Roebelenii (Latin Phoenix roebelenii) - a miniature palm, which is also called "dwarf". The Robelena date grows in nature on the coastal areas and rocks, reaching one to two meters in height. Rare cases when it grows up to 3 meters. The leaves are large, feathery relative to the growth of the tree. The trunk is thin - no more than 10 cm in diameter.
The main difference between these types is dimensions. Robelena is compact, occupies a smaller area and therefore more popular among lovers of indoor greenery and greenhouse owners. In addition, it is less whimsical to care for and grows more slowly.
Useful properties of the date. The juice extracted from the leaves of the date palm has anti-inflammatory effect, counteracts some infectious and skin diseases. The dates themselves contain vitamins of groups A and B, valuable amino acids and trace elements.
The date palm is a small corner of the tropics in a house or apartment. It creates a festive atmosphere and contributes to additional coziness, being an excellent solution also for office premises. Despite its exoticism, the plant is not so whimsical to care for, but there are some nuances.
Lighting. The date loves the sun, so you need a lot of light, including in winter. Direct sunlight is acceptable, but not permanently. The plant cannot withstand air stagnation, therefore, the ventilation of the room should be at the level, but without drafts. For normal, symmetrical growth of a tree, it should be rotated regularly so that the light falls evenly - the top of the palm tree is always directed deeper into the room. If we talk about Robelen, then in winter she needs more light hours than Canary.
Temperature. In summer, the optimum air temperature is 20-25 degrees Celsius. Wintering should take place at a temperature of about 15-18 degrees. Canary palm tolerates cold better and can successfully winter at 8-10 degrees.
Air humidity. Tropical roots affect the love of the date palm, especially Robelena, for high air humidity - at least 60%. Low air humidity will not become critical, but it can negatively affect the decorative attractiveness of the palm tree. Each species should be sprayed during the summer and dust should be removed from the leaves by rinsing under the shower. It is advisable to use filtered or settled water.
Watering. Watering is not too plentiful, but frequent - 2-3 times a week during the growth period. During wintering - once a week. Preferably the water is soft and at room temperature. In the summer you can use the rainfall. In winter, melted snow. Overdrying the soil should not be allowed, otherwise the leaves will turn yellow, and the resumption of the correct watering regime will not help correct the situation.
Top dressing. From spring to autumn, it is during this period that the date palm is actively growing, you need to feed it with special liquid mineral fertilizers. Frequency - 2-3 times a month. In winter, the frequency of top dressing is reduced.
Transfer. An adult date palm does not treat transplants well, so it is better not to do this unless necessary. Only when the pot becomes small and without destroying the earthen lump. Young plants can be replanted once a year. It is advisable to take a deep, rather than a wide pot with a drainage of several centimeters. If we are talking about large and mature palms, then in order not to damage the roots, it is recommended to simply break the old pots.
Trimming and shaping. Broken, damaged leaves or those that bent below a line parallel to the ground should be pruned. If the leaves just turn yellow or even turn brown, you do not need to remove them right away - the plant still feeds on the juice in them. An important note - you cannot cut off more leaves than they grow in a year.
Bloom. In nature, it forms flowers of predominantly yellow color, which form large inflorescences. At home, flowering is a huge rarity.
Reproduction. The palm tree propagates by seeds, that is, by seeds from dates. The fruit must be fresh and sufficiently ripe. The reproduction process is not too difficult, but it takes a lot of time and will suit the most patient - years must pass for the plant to reach a more or less large size. For those who want a palm tree here and now, it is better to buy a ready-made plant and take care of it.
Diseases and pests. Diseases occur at low air humidity - the tips of the leaves dry out at the same time. The presence of cold drafts in the room leads to the same. When water stagnates, rot appears, the presence of which is indicated by characteristic spots on the foliage. If the drainage is not good enough, then excess moisture can attack the root system. Rotten palms need to be transplanted into new soil immediately, accompanied by the removal of painful parts.
In ancient Egypt, date palm was used to make more than 300 different types of products, from building materials to drinks (palm beer).
The date palm is used in folk medicine, making decoctions and infusions from its leaves, which are considered useful for problems with the urinary-genital and cardiovascular systems of the body.
Date palm seeds can be dormant for many years, waiting for optimal growing conditions while maintaining the necessary properties
PHOTO OF DATE, DATE PALM