How to Grow a Date Palm From Seed

Overview

The date palm (Phoenix dactylifera) is a fruit-bearing tree that can grow 100 to 120 feet tall at maturity. The date fruits are sweet, dark-brown to reddish or yellowish-brown, with thick skin and flesh. The date palm is an ancient fruit, with cultivation dating back to 4,000 B.C. The date palm grows best in warmer climates where the average temperature during the growing season is above 64 degrees Fahrenheit and winter temperatures don't drop below 20 degree Fahrenheit. You can grow a date palm from the seeds contained inside the date fruit.

Step 1

Cut the date fruits in half to extract the seeds inside. Pick off as much of the excess fruit on the date seed as possible.

Step 2

Fill a small cup with clean, distilled, chlorine-free water and submerge the date palm seeds into the water. Allow the seeds to soak in the water for 24 hours.

Step 3

Replace the water with fresh chlorine-free water. Soak the date palm seeds for another 24 hours.

Step 4

Remove the date seeds from the water and place them in a small plastic sandwich bag filled with vermiculite. Sprinkle with 2 tsp. of water, seal and gently shake the bag to cover the seeds with the moist vermiculite.

Step 5

Store the date palm seeds in the plastic bag in a warm location, maintaining an ideal soil temperature of 80 to 85 degrees Fahrenheit. Sprinkle additional water into the bag if the vermiculite becomes very dry.

Step 6

Fill 2-inch wide planter pots with rich potting soil, organic compost or a mixture of both. Plant the date palm seeds, after they sprout, individually into the planter pots just beneath the soil surface.

Step 7

Place the pots in a warm area that receives full sunlight all day long. Water the seedlings once each day to keep the soil slightly moist, but not wet.

Tips and Warnings

  • If you see bubbles forming on the water, change the water immediately or stop soaking the date palm seeds. The bubbles mean that the bits of fruit still attached to the seed are fermenting.

Things You'll Need

  • Date fruit or date palm seeds
  • Small cup
  • Chlorine-free water
  • Plastic sandwich bag
  • Vermiculite
  • Planter pots, 2-inches wide
  • Potting soil
  • Organic compost
  • Tweezers (optional)

References

  • Huw's Pleasure Garden: Grow a Date from Seed
  • Purdue University: Date -- Phoenix dactylifera

Who Can Help

  • Jungle Music Palms & Cycads: A Nurseryman's Viewpoint
Keywords: grow date palms, date palm trees, plant date palm seeds

About this Author

Sarah Terry brings 10 years of experience writing novels, business-to-business newsletters, and a plethora of how-to articles. Terry has written articles and publications for a wide range of markets and subject matters, including Medicine & Health, Eli Financial, Dartnell Publications and Eli Journals.