Advances in Date Palm (Phoenix dactylifera L.) Breeding

  • Jameel M. Al-KhayriEmail author
  • Poornananda M. Naik
  • Shri Mohan Jain
  • Dennis V. Johnson


Date palm is one of the oldest cultivated plants, grown in the arid and semiarid regions of the world. The date fruit serves as a vital worldwide component of the human diet and a staple food for millions of people. Unfortunately, various abiotic and biotic stresses along with agronomic constraints are hindering date productivity. Those date cultivars adapted to stress conditions have low fruit production. Conventional breeding, depending on crosses and backcrosses, is a time-consuming process. The applied research carried out on date palm is limited, still there is enormous potential to improve date palm breeding methods. Advanced biotechnology creates unparalleled opportunities to develop new varieties with quality fruit, increased fruit yield and resistance to pests and pathogens. It also minimizes the application of potentially-harmful fungicides and pesticides and increases crop productivity. This chapter provides current and innovative information about date palm progress in terms of distribution, production, marketing strategy, current achievements, limitations and challenges facing date palm breeding. It also focuses on recent advances in tissue culture, genetic transformation and molecular breeding to improve the productivity and quality of the date.


Abiotic stress Biotic stress Conventional breeding Genetic engineering Genomics Molecular breeding Tissue culture 


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Jameel M. Al-Khayri
    • 1
    Email author
  • Poornananda M. Naik
    • 1
  • Shri Mohan Jain
    • 2
  • Dennis V. Johnson
    • 3
  1. 1.Department of Agricultural Biotechnology, College of Agriculture and Food SciencesKing Faisal UniversityAl-HassaSaudi Arabia
  2. 2.Department of Agricultural SciencesUniversity of HelsinkiHelsinkiFinland
  3. 3.ConsultantCincinnatiUSA

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