The date palm is a dioecious species, meaning that each individual tree can bear male or female inflorescences, but not both.
The inflorescences of both male and female genders consist of a few thousand tiny flowers that sit in clusters on strands, arranged together on a flat rachis. They are sheathed in a rigid spathe that protects the inflorescence during the early stage of flower development. When the flowers' development is ended, the inflorescence emerges from the axils of the leaves and the spathe splits.
Each male flower has six stamens, which produce the pollen. Good quality of the fruit is obtained only from fertilized female flowers. Without pollination and fertilization there is no fruit at all, or development of parthenocarpic fruit which is tasteless and worthless. Some important growth areas of date palm orchards suffer nowadays from a significant shortage of high-quality pollen required for pollination on time. This worrying phenomenon requires planting male trees as soon as possible.
Some scientific studies indicate the impact of male donation to fruit size, ripening date and an amount of fruit parameters. According to the growers' experience, fruit quality and quantity depend, amongst other things, on the quality and amount of the pollen and the timing of pollination. Although the pollen can be stored for a long period, it is an advantage to use fresh pollen for pollination.
Zemach Plant Tissue Culture LTD. produces tissue cultured male plants. The explants for the culture is male trees, which have been proven as excelling not only in quantity and pollen vitality, but also in early flowering, which enables the use of their pollen at the beginning of the season.