Martha's Gardens Date Farm - Theresa Goodrich

Martha's Gardens Date Farm

Date palms have been feeding humans for longer than any other fruit, but they’re not native to the Americas. They were brought here in the early 1900s, and the medjool specifically in 1927 because it was dying in Morocco. A disease called bayoud threatened to wipe them out, so an American by the name of Dr. Walter Swingle brought eleven healthy offshoots to Nevada, where they were quarantined to make sure there was no disease. Nine survived (two were dug up by a dog) and were moved to Indio, California, where they thrived. Since the main method of date palm propagation is to cull the shoots from the mother plant, the trees in Martha’s Gardens can be directly traced back to the original in Morocco.

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