Volume 8, Issue 2      April - June, 2020

A comparative study of pollination methods effect on the changes in fruit yield and quality of date palm cultivar Khalas

Muhammad Munir1,2*, Mohammed Refdan Al-Hajhoj1, Hesham Sayed Ghazzawy1,3, Abdel-Kader Mohammed Sallam1,4, Abdul Majeed Al-Bahigan1, Mubarak Ali Al-Muiweed1

1Date Palm Research Center of Excellence, King Faisal University, Al-Ahsa, Saudi Arabia

2Frontier Agriculture, SOYL Precision Crop Production Division, Newbury, United Kingdom

3Central Laboratory for Date Palm Research and Development, Agriculture Research Center, Giza, Egypt

4College of Technology and Development, Zagazig University, Egypt


To improve fruit set, yield and fruit physicochemical characteristics of date palm cv. Khalas, the effects of different pollination methods (pollen dusting, strands placement, pollen suspension, and natural pollination) were investigated. Twelve date palm trees were selected for the experiment, for which five spathes (spadix) from each palm were carefully chosen. The experiment was laid out on Randomized Complete Block Design with three replicates for each treatment. The results indicated significant differences among different pollination methods. The date palm cv. Khalas pollinated with dusting method exhibited significantly promising results regarding fruit set, parthenocarpic fruit, biser fruit, tamar fruit, and fruit drop percentage, bunch weight, pulp weight, pulp, seed and pulp : seed ratio, fruit fresh and dry weight, fruit length, width, and volume, seed weight and length, fruit moisture content, total soluble solids, total and reducing sugars. Data regarding total number of fruit nodes per bunch, seed width, and non-reducing sugar were not significantly affected by any pollination methods. Pollination carried out by pollen suspension technique was closely followed to pollen dusting method and a number of attributes were non-significant between the two methods such as fruit set, parthenocarpic fruit, tamar fruit, and fruit drop percentage, bunch and pulp weight, pulp, seed and pulp : seed ratio and fruit moisture content. Strands placement technique was much better than the control one that showed poor results regarding all attributes studied. The correlation between the parameters indicated that fruit set percentage had a significant positive relationship with tamar fruit percentage, bunch weight, total soluble solids, and total sugars. It is consequently concluded that pollen dusting and pollen suspension techniques are the best ones to pollinate date palm cv. Khalas. Moreover, date palm can not be left on natural pollination, which adversely affects fruit yield and quality attributes.

Keywords: Phoenix dactylifera, Khalas, Pollination strategies, Fruit production, Physicochemical traits

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