The date festival is held in late winter. It is often mildly warm, but often still pretty cold. It is an odd time to hold the date festival and inexplicable, because the harvesting occurs in late fall and early winter. The harvest season is usually over in 60 days. After that there are really no more dates to harvest. Dates are stored and can be stored for prolonged periods of time. Dates can be stored away for many years in proper conditions, but they are not fresh and not harvested year round. The medjool dates are available year round, but clearly not harvested year round. It takes a whole year to get the medjool dates from beginning to end. From caring for the date palm to harvesting the ripe fruit.GHTime Code(s): nc
Back in the 1980′s the Coachella Valley was not very well known. It was not as secluded as say the times of celebrities of yesteryear, but it was time when you could go down the street on your bike without seeing a car for hours. Date orchards were much more plentiful, and I suspect date production was much higher. There were medjool dates and even more deglet noor dates. Not so much anymore. Now there are tons of golf courses where there used to be medjool date orchards or other date orchards. I still remember walking to a date orchard not too long ago. The owner was a woman and many a person thought she was a fool when she bought a 20 acre date orchard for almost $1 million. Then the desert boom. There were golf courses everywhere and that orchard stood out until it of course sold for about six times what the original owner paid. Then of course the real estate market collapsed, now she could buy another 20 acre orchard for half of what she sold her orchard for. Sadly, much of the date production has been converted into golf courses. Good for the seller, but not the best use of land. Not much of a benefit from irrigating a lot of desert land for the purpose of growing grass so people can chase a ball.GHTime Code(s): nc
Medjool dates are not good for the tropics. Most people think of the tropics when they think of lush green palms and trees. Everyone wants to be the exception to rule and try growing medjool dates in the tropics, but as of now no one has succeeded. Though some people apparently have succeeded in making tasty medjool dates by microwaving the fruit. What is evident is that the tropics get a lot of rain and if medjool dates get wet they are likely to get ruined and the rain also increases the chances of disease. It is the nature of rain and date trees and disease.