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Date Palm Status and Perspective in Yemen

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Abstract

In Yemen, there are more than four million date palms (Phoenix dactylifera L.) occupying an estimated area of 14,464–14,955 ha during the period 2008–2012 and producing 55,181–57,849 mt of dates in the same years. More than 321 date palm cultivars are recorded in Yemen, 42 are considered excellent. Most of the date palm plantings in Yemen are irregular, mainly concentrated in the governorates of Hadramaut and Hodeidah. Cultivars of Hamra, Mijraf, Sokotri, Serfaneh, Manasif, Tha’al, and Bqal are dominant. The date palm in Yemen is suffering from several insect and mite pests, namely, the red palm weevil which appeared in 2013; the Dubas bug first recorded in 2000; the stalk and stem borers, Oryctes spp.; the lesser date moth, termites, and white scale; storage pests; and the dust mite. Chemical insecticides are used for the control of most of them. Birds, bats, and rodents are among the serious pests. In addition, the diseases soft rot, black scorch, Graphiola leaf spot, and inflorescence rot are recorded. Sanitation is the current means for controlling these diseases. Two factories designed mainly for packing dates have been established, but they are facing problems to work efficiently. Date fruits are marketed locally. Utilization of date palm parts has been known for a long time in Yemen. Date palm growers face problems of poor marketing of their products; lack of handling procedures (packing and processing); high production cost (labor); social and human obstacles such as land fragmentation, poor infrastructure, urbanization, and difficulty of access to soft loans; as well as unavailability of specialized associations and alliances. Because the government of Yemen considers the date palm as one of the most important economic and strategic crop, a national program for promoting the date palm sector is being implemented targeting the following objectives: rehabilitation of old date palm trees, introducing new systems for crop management, and applying integrated pest and disease programs for major insects, mite pests, and diseases. Two tissue culture laboratories have been established.

Keywords

  • Cultivars
  • Cultivation
  • Diseases
  • Genetic resources
  • Harvest
  • Historical
  • Manufacturing
  • Marketing
  • Pests
  • Processing
  • Propagation

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Correspondence to Saeed Ba-Angood .

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Ba-Angood, S. (2015). Date Palm Status and Perspective in Yemen. In: Al-Khayri, J., Jain, S., Johnson, D. (eds) Date Palm Genetic Resources and Utilization. Springer, Dordrecht. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-94-017-9707-8_7

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