The date palm trees have flowered. It marks the arrival of a new season. Weather is cold now, but very soon it will change and the summer will begin. You can expect hot and sunny days soon. Then in no time, the holy month of Ramadan starts. By the time Eid Al Fitr comes, the flowers would have developed and fully ripened dates will be ready. I have been following them for the past several years. Each time they flower, it is an opportunity to remember about the past seasons. And also look forward to the future ahead.
If you have kids, take them around for a walk in the evening. Show them the changes to the trees and flowers as the flowers blossom to a fresh green date and then ripen to reddish and juicy ones.
Very few know about the hidden treasure from this part of the world. The actual date tree population in UAE is about 40 millions of which 8.5 in AL-AIN region. The gene pool is large and composes about 120 date varieties. New introductions from Saudi Arabia, Iraq and Oman included Khallas, AbouMaan, Hallawi, Khissab, Khenezi, Nabut Saif, Jabiri, Hillali, Lulu, Chichi, Khadraoui, Sakii, Sultana and Barhi varieties.
UAE produces 533,701 Metric tons of dates on an average
Confused with my title. Not to worry. I am just giving you a hint on how the nature alert you about the change of season. It is cool climate now with a bit of rain here and there. But, look closely at the surroundings. Go for a walk and look at the date palm trees. You will see that they have started flowering.
It announces the arrival of a news season. Soon, you will get to see the climate changing with the arrival of hot wind and sand storm and then straight to summer.
I always propagate a lot about this so far untapped natural resource of the UAE.
The UAE is one of the top 10 date palm cultivators in the world, with dates grown in royal palaces, private residences, public gardens and streets as well as commercial farms.
Date palms are an intrinsic part of Arab life and heritage. For thousands of years, they have provided shelter, food and other necessities, as Arab Bedouins have settled in palm oases, and made use of all parts of the tree and its fruit. Palm wood and leaves were used to build houses, fences, beams, baskets, ropes and many other useful items, while the fruit itself has been a basic staple of the Arab diet, and a main source of nutrition and energy.
Photography Opportunity – “Our Story of the Date Palms”
Have you ever watched the Palm trees flowering process. If not, watch them from now on. The trees have started flowering.
Normally, the process happen after the 2nd quarter of every year. But the last year, weather and nature was not kind enough and as a result, the palm trees did not flower during that time and now only they are flowering. These two important factors, Weather and Nature, always influence photography.
Now, they are in favour blessing the UAE weather and it’s natural vegetation.
It is time for you to take out your camera, identify a palm tree of your choice, photograph it every week, as it flowers, and the flower grow and become a full fledged date fruit and then it ripes and then it is harvested. You may get almost 12 – 16 weeks to see the process. Enjoy clicking as much as you can, post them here.
Do not finish it there, do write your experiences, as you click the process, the life that happens, during the time, interesting period, as winter give way to summer and all the related events happens. Best wishes, Each one of you can submit as many photos as you can, but per week only one best click of you will be selected and then end of the project, 16 best clicks as a collage.
It will be a good observation cum photography experience if you track it and great team activity with your friends and family.
You may click them from wherever you are in the UAE. Opt to choose the growth sequence in one or two selected trees.
A display of this wonderful natural event and the result of your efforts submitted to Passionate Photographers group on Facebook is planned in mid 2014 when this seasonal cycle gets completed with the dates ripe, mature and fall down announcing the arrival of Christmas and another year end.
For parents with children and schools interested or not interested in Photography, this will be a very good exercise to have them observe the nature, the seasonal changes and to observe and realise how nature announces the arrival of the seasons in its own way. Since it is spread out during a period of four months, it will be also a test to find out how patient you are towards your short term and long term objectives.
Thus, to create an interactive interest among parents/children/teachers, photos of participating children below age 16 will be separately displayed and appreciated.
At the end of the project, those children who are participating in this event are welcome to write a short story – not less than 300 words – on their experience of capturing the season that passed by while photographing for this event.
A maximum of 16 photos, i.e. 1 photo per week for the next 4 months on the subject. 16 photos selected by each member / each month, ie March, April, May, Jun, clicks could be submitted. All photos will be exhibited digitally and best ones will find its way into an exhibition scheduled during a special occasion.
Photos taken using Mobile Phones also can also be submitted.
Time Frame for clicking : 4th March 2014 – 4th July 2014.
Please post your clicks marked for this event on to the special event created at Passionate Photographers group and also email the soft copy of it to email@example.com with the subject line:
Photo Competition – “Our Story of the Date Palms”
Please note to observe the time and date you click along with the GPS location of your object, for jury to identify it before the exhibition.
Original high resolution files will be required to be submitted at a later stage with full information of the photo and photographer.
Files should not be modified or altered with.
Please share it with your friends and family who may be interested.
Please do not hesitate to contact me in case you have any further clarifications.
To view the event page on Facebook, please visit Passionate Photographers group on Facebook.
For any further queries, please contact – Ramesh Menon, Abu Dhabi on Phone 050 8122319
Welcome to participate and Best wishes in advance.