Remains of old date palm fragments have been found in various sites. The most common remnants found are seeds commonly referred to as stones. The seeds were commonly preserved by carbonization , but some were preserved by dessication, or mineralization or their impressions were preserved on mud bricks and pottery. On occasion the whole fruit is also found preserved by carbonization.
Evidence of these seeds and carbon dating demonstrates that the Phoenix dactylifera was around the Middle East and were consumed in eastern Arabia in the neolithic period around 6500 to 5000 B.C. The finding of seeds at particular archaeological sites does not mean the dates were harvested for consumption locally, because dates were easy to store and transport. Dates could have been transported very long distances, because dates can be preserved for several months and theoretically could have traveled in trade routes very long distances. When the woody fiber of the date palm and the seeds from the date fruit or the entire date fruit is found together then the likelihood that the date palm was present in that particular location, increases. The woody material from the date palm is usually found in the form or charcoal, but it can be identified by use of a reflected light microscope. Date palms and date fruit remains have been found together throughout most of the Arabian Gulf from around 3,000 b.c. Date palms in the wild are capable of producing large seeds just as domesticated varieties. This makes it more difficult to ascertain which finds are cultivated and which are wild populations. Homogenous findings tends to suggest the date palms were cultivated. Very small seed findings on the other hand tends to suggest the date palms were wild. Sometimes the seeds found are many and the sizes are too small, but not small enough to determine if they are likely to be wild or cultivated dates. Around 3000 B.C. in eastern Arabia numerous remains of date palm were found along with date fruit seeds or impressions of annual crops this tends to prove that agriculture was practiced at an oasis. The date palm itself used for production of food, but also as means of providing shelter and shade for other crops.
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