Thursday, January 6, 2011

Born in Arabia, Bred in Arcadia

One of the first groves ever planted in the Arcadia area was the Black Sphinx date palm in or around 1917. The pups were brought from Arabia and planted just South of Lafayette between 46th and 47th Place. The grove still stands today with 400+ trees. In 1954 the area was subdivided and houses were carefully built amongst the trees to minimize tree removal. Neighbors who live here liken the area to a rain-forest canopy.
Several years ago, with guidance from a long-time “datilero”, Harry Polk, I started harvesting the dates from the trees in my yard as well as those of my next-door neighbors. If you would like stop by my house at 4641 E. Calle Redonda (602-840-0622), I have dates available for $7 per 1-pound box.
The plump moist fruit, almost jet black in color, has a delicate flavor and creamy texture. They are delicious right out of the box, or stuffed with blue cheese, goat cheese, chocolates or nuts; they are also wonderful in salads or as a glaze for chicken.
One of my favorite recipes is for Moroccan Chicken and Date Tangine from

Pollination Time

Bagging Time

Delicious Black Sphinx Dates


Sweet Life Garden said...

Thankyou Erica, for all of time and effort that you have put into learning to harvest these awesome dates. We so appreciate you sharing them with your community They are just like candy!

Amber said...

Hello! I am so happy to have found your blog. I am a keen gardener in Australia and I just love other peoples garden blogs. I dont put too much about my garden on my blog for some reason, but I think now that I am settled back home I will have to change that. My sunflowers are about to show their pretty faces today. Cant wait to see them! Bye!

Sweet Life Garden said...

Hi Amber, so happy you dropped by! Please, by all means keep me up to date on your garden happenings. I too,love sunflowers!