The same authors reported differences between varieties: Sayer as an early variety (2n = 32) and Khasab, a late variety (2n=36).
Another source refers this botanical name to the legendary Egyptian bird, "Phoenix", which lived to be 500 years old, and cast itself into a fire from which it rose with renewed growth (Pliny, 1489; Van Zyl, 1983). canariensis Chabeaud, commonly called the Canary Island Palm. It is worth mentioning that date roots can withstand wet soil for many months, but if such conditions spread over longer periods, they become harmful to the health of the roots and to fruit production.
de Wet Date Production Support Programme The botanical name of the date palm, Phoenix dactylifera L., is presumably derived from a Phoenician name "phoenix", which means date palm, and "dactylifera" derived from a Greek word "daktulos" meaning a finger, illustrating the fruit's form (Linné, 1734). Most of the 12 Phoenix species are well known as ornamentals, the most highly valued is P. Roots are found as far as 25 m from the palm and deeper than 6 m, but 85 percent of the roots are distributed in the zone of 2 m deep and 2 m on both lateral sides in a deep loamy soil (Munier, 1973).
Belonging to the Angiosperms-Monocotyledones, Palmaceae is a family of about 200 genera and 1, 500 species (Dowson, 1982). From Figure 1, it is clear that the date palm root system is divided into four zones (Oihabi, 1991): - Zone I, called respiratory zone: It is localised at the palm base's surrounding area with no more than 25 cm depth and a lateral distribution of a maximum of 0.5 m away from the stipe.
Phoenix (Coryphoideae Phoeniceae) is one of the genera which contains a dozen species, all native to the tropical or subtropical regions of Africa or Southern Asia, including Phoenix dactylifera L. According to Dransfield and Uhl, (1986) date palm is classified as follows: Besides date palm, five of the above species bear edible fruit (P. Found in this zone are mainly roots of primary and secondary nature.
Close relationship among the 12 species is illustrated by the ease of hybridisation and cross-pollination (Moore, 1963; Munier, 1973). TABLE 1Date palm root morphology and distribution All date palm roots present pneumatics, which are respiratory organs.
If the crown of fronds is included, the date palm could reach a height of over 20 m (Blatter, 1926); and - dark green leaves, (instead of the shiny green colour of the two other species). The date palm root morphology and distribution are illustrated in Table 1.
is distinguished from the above two species by several characteristics which could be summarised as follows: - production of offshoots; - tall, columnar and relatively thick trunk. These secondary roots produce lateral roots (tertiary roots and so on) of the same type with approximately the same diameter throughout their length.
Secondary roots appear on the primary root which develop directly from the seed.
Its root system is fasciculated and roots are fibrous, similar to a maize plant.
3.1 Vegetative organs 3.1.1 Root system Being a monocotyledon, date palm has no tap root.
Furthermore, in both varieties, aneuploidy and euploidy were observed: (Sayer: 32, 34, 36 and 64 and Khasab: 32 and 36).