Scientific Name: Argania spinosa Sahraoui [Hassaniyya] Name: ‫[ آرݣان‬Argan


Location: Ait Melloul , Morocco Photographed: May 2013

Brief Description: A tree that grows 8 to 10 meters tall, it is only present in the Souss-Draa Region of Morocco and southwest Algeria (Tindouf). Concern over urbanization and overgrazing depleting the numbers of this species, efforts to replant it were made but with no success. Regeneration, at present, must happen naturally. The fruits of this tree, ‘louz el berberi’ [‫ ]اللوز البربري‬in the Hassaniyya dialect, are collected to produce the lucrative product known as Argan oil. It takes 100 kilograms of these fruits to produce 2 liters of oil. Goats are known to climb onto the branches in order to graze on the leaves and fruits (often pictured in postcards of the region) and camels also appreciate the leaves and fruits as pasture.

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