The in vitro technology used by Zemach Tissue Culture Ltd. is somatic embryogenesis. According to this method, pieces of meristemic tissue from the shoot tip or immature inflorescences are taken from a selected adult tree or off shoot, and are planted under sterile conditions in the growth medium. Due to specific composition of the medium, the shoot tip tissue starts to divide and creates callus (undifferentiated tissue). This callus changes its character as a result of changing the medium composition, and starts to form a lot of somatic embryos. The embryos are then transferred from medium to medium several times, and are gradually developed into normal plantlets with shoots and roots. These plantlets are grown in the laboratory until they are ready for acclimatization outside the laboratory. The process enables receipt of large numbers of identical daughter plantlets from one mother tree.
Propagation of date palm by tissue culture technology is a very slow process. The duration in the laboratory from the introduction of the plant material takes about 3 years to complete. During the acclimatization and further growth of the plantlets in the nursery the plants are transplanted a few times from their current container to a bigger one, until they reach the desired size and condition and are ready for delivery to the customers for field planting. The acclimatization and growth stages in the nursery take about 1.5-2 years, thus the entire process takes about 5 years.