Presented below is a selection of photos from the recent turf cutting ceremony held by DPD on the site for its new planned glasshouse facility. The event celebrated the beginning of the groundworks, which are scheduled to be carried out during the summer period. The exciting new project is being co-ordinated by well-known greenhouse manufacturer Bridge Greenhouses, based in West Sussex.
DPD was once again pleased to welcome special guests from it’s parent company, Atul Ltd to take part in cutting the first piece of turf to set in motion the construction process. DPD staff members also took part in the occasion, as did local Mendip councillors, to whom DPD is thankful for their ongoing support. In what is a local Somerset tradition, all attendees were invited to pour a cupful of cider into the newly dug patch of ground, to bring about good luck during the project.
Date Palm Developments (DPD) recently held a ribbon cutting ceremony to celebrate work beginning on the planned site of it’s new glasshouse facility. DPD was very pleased to welcome visitors from it’s parent company, Atul Ltd, to participate by cutting the ceremonial ribbon, with local Councillors and staff members also in attendance.
Once constructed, the new state-of-the-art glasshouse facility will allow DPD to double it’s plant production capacity compared with current levels, while at the same time providing an opportunity for DPD to explore and implement some of the latest greenhouse technology and innovations in horticulture.
Please continue to check this blog for further updates on the construction progress.
D.P.D. Ltd is proud to be a supporter of the Arboretum at Arizona State University, helping to ensure that the rare varieties that it holds continue to be available to growers worldwide. ASU has the largest date palm collection of any public garden in the USA with more than 40 date palm varieties, including varieties descended from offshoots imported over 100 years ago, as well as specially bred domestic varieties, including varieties such as Black Sphinx, which are uniquely native to Arizona.
Arizona State University’s campus date palms produce around 3,500-4,500 pounds of dates each fall on two different campuses. They give away free samples of dates at campus events so that thousands of students, staff and the public can taste and appreciate the many different varieties of dates.
The programme runs throughout the calendar year. From February through to March, 80-100 volunteers, students and ASU horticulture classes learn how to pollinate the Date Palms. A further 75 volunteers bag the date bunches in June, July and August. Every September between 30 and 60 Changemaker Central Polytechnic volunteer students de-thorn, trim and clean up the palms for harvest. Harvesting time is in October and about 300 volunteers help with the entire process and fruit sales. Ishkashitaa Refugee Network volunteers travel up from Tucson and glean all the dates that they didn’t have time to bag, which totals around 1,500-2,000 pounds. Throughout the year they build up around 1,500 volunteer hours on both the Poly grove and Tempe campus.
For more information about the Arboretum please visit: https://cfo.asu.edu/fdm-arboretum-datepalm
DPD is very excited to be attending the GFIA exhibition in Abu Dhabi on the 20th and 21st March 2017. The exhibition will provide a great opportunity for DPD to explore the latest sustainable innovations for horticulturalists and growers, as the development of our new greenhouse facility gets underway. DPD will be exploring key technological developments in areas such as irrigation, building management and LED lighting systems. The exhibition will also give DPD the opportunity to meet and connect with many growers, large and small, in the exhibition’s dedicated “Sustainable Date Palm Technology Zone”.
DPD is pleased to be able to share this opportunity with representatives from its parent company, Atul Ltd. DPD will also be sharing it’s stand at the exhibition with longstanding customer Green Coast Nurseries of Fujairah, who will be kindly providing some sample Date Palm plants. The forum, which was launched in 2014, is one of the largest of its kind, with thousands of companies from all over the world in attendance. The exhibition also provides a focus on the bigger picture by presenting speakers who will explore wider issues such as worldwide food security, energy solutions and sustainable agriculture practices.
Many thanks to Scott Frische and his colleagues from the Phoenix, Arizona Date Palm Appreciation Society for their generous help in making possible a fantastic trip to see the important Date Palm Variety collection(s) of Phoenix, Arizona. With the assistance of local date palm expert Scott Frische, DPD are looking to expand the range of varieties it produces to ensure that these varieties continue to be available to growers worldwide.
The tissue culture process requires regular initiations of new starter material to ensure the continuous production of quality plants. DPD only use high quality offshoot material, DNA fingerprinted to confirm variety and specially selected from well managed traditional collections for our tissue culture process.
Visiting a variety of plantations around Phoenix including at the Arizona State University (ASU), we were shown both historic palms descended from offshoots imported over 100 years ago and new varieties which have been specially bred in the US.
The ASU grove is the 2nd largest collection of varieties in US featuring over 40 date palm cultivars originating from Morocco, Algeria, Iraq and many other countries. These include major commercial varieties such as Medjool, Deglet Noor and Barhee and many less common, but equally high quality varieties like Halawi, Khadrawy and Zahidi. As housing development has impacted upon many of the traditional date palm plantations in the Phoenix area, the ASU collection has provided an increasingly important home for many rare varieties.
A wide selection of varieties including cultivars favoured for their Khalal fruit were identified and sampled for further testing and DPD hope to begin the importation and propagation process soon.
DPD would like to thank everyone who helped make this trip so successful, most notably Scott Frische, Ron Palmer,. Deborah Thirkhill, James Badman and ASU.
DPD were honoured to be visited by a host of important guests on the 12th May 2016. British Deputy High Commissioner for Ahmedabad Geoff Wain, UK Trade & Investment Specialist John Moss, Local Councillor Nigel Woollcombe-Adams and Company Directors Bharathy Mohanan, Ajitsingh Batra and Shailesh Pandya from DPD’s parent company Atul Ltd, India were all in attendance.
Guests were invited to DPD to look at our present operations and discuss potential opportunities for expansion. After being shown a presentation on our company history and current operations, our visitors were given a tour of our laboratory and glasshouse facilities.
Of particular interest was the relationship between DPD and Atul and UK trade with India. DPD have been supplying plants to Atul since 2011, assisting them in their ‘Greening the Desert’ program being undertaken in Rajasthan and Gujarat States.
With a growing market demand and an increasing number of countries planting date palms, the general consensus was that DPD staff should continue with their excellent work in supplying the world with Date Palms and look at ways to expand our date palm production to ensure we are capable of meeting the increasing global demand.
DPD were recently visited by journalist Daniel Bardsley of the National Newspaper, UAE. Click on the links below to read his articles on us and learn about how we developed into one of the largest suppliers of tissue cultured Date Palm plants into the U.A.E.
DPD were delighted to be able to support Green Coast Nurseries when they received the prestigious Khalifa International Date Palm Award 2013, at the Emirates Palace, Abu Dhabi. In a lavish ceremony, Green Coast Nurseries were honoured for their services to the date palm community, and DPD were proud to be able to share this moment with our longstanding nursery partner.
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