Had a quick stop to view a frankincense forest. Maybe forest is a bit of a misnomer as the trees really look like bushes

The wadi in Dhofar region of Oman is a stony, semi desert valley, where the density of frankincense trees spreads across 5 square kilometers.

Wadi Dawkah is a habitat for Boswellia sacra type of Frankincense trees. Boswellia sacra is a tree in the Burseraceae family. It is the primary tree in the genus Boswellia from which frankincense is harvested. The Frankincense from this tree is considered the best type of frankincense.

At the age of 8 to 10 years, frankincense tree enters into production stage. The season of production begins in April every year when the temperature of the Wadi starts to rise.

The production process begins by wounding the tree at various positions depending on the size of the tree. This first wound is called Tapping. As a result of tapping, a milky white sap leeches out of the wound. There are couple of other wounding process

The average quantity of a fully grown frankincense tree is 3 to 4 kilo grams of frankincense per season. There are four different types of frankincense grown in Oman – Shaabi, Shizri, Nejdi and Al-Hawjri. Al-Hawjri is the best one as it’s whiter and clearer then the others.

The end of the season is called Alkashem.

(Please click on any thumbnail above to enlarge the whole gallery for full size sliding photos)

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