Argan (Argania spinosa (L.) Skeels) is a thorny tree from the arid and semi-arid regions of Morocco and Algeria. It is mainly cultivated for its oil and it is an important fodder tree in Morocco, particularly for goats. The fruit pulp and the oil extraction by-products are also fed to livestock.
Argan is a long-lived evergreen, thorny tree . It is a medium-sized tree that reaches a height of 8-10 m, sometimes up to 20 m. Its strong root system can reach a depth of 35 m, making it able to survive droughts, and suitable for arid and semi-arid areas . The trunk is knotty and has a diameter of up to 1 m. The tree bears many criss-crossed stems. The leaves are small, clustered and lanceolate .
They can absorb any moisture from the air . The inflorescences are axillary borne. The flowers are bisexual, greenish-yellow in colour . The fruits are ovoid fleshy drupes that can need 1 year to ripen. They are green to bright yellow in colour and their pulp contains a milky latex unpleasant for humans . They are quite similar to olive fruits, but larger and rounder, and they may contain up to 3 seeds . The argan seed is a hard-shelled nut containing 1-3 kernels and yielding 50% of edible oil . Argania spinosa fruit plants in Keralais now available in our farms.