• Pulp samples were manufactured from wheat straw and date palm midrips.
  • Soda-AQ pulping process was employed for the samples.
  • Wheat straw samples had the highest hemicellulose and ash values.
  • Fibre length values of date palm midrib and what straw specimens were lower than that of cedar wood samples.


The objective of this study was to characterize the properties of pulp and paper manufactured from two agricultural residues namely, wheat straw (Triticum aestivumL. em Thell.) and date palm midribs (Phoenix dactylifera L.) widely available in Saudi Arabia by employing soda-anthraquinone (AQ) pulping process. Specimens from cedar wood (Juniperus procera Hochst. ex Endl.) wood was also used as control samples. Chemical and the morphological characteristics of all three types of raw materials in addition to basic properties of hand sheets made from such resources were evaluated. The results indicated that wheat straw had the highest hemicellulose and ash values of 35% and 7% and the lowest lignin content value of 18%, respectively. The fibre length of the both palm fronds and wheat straw was lower than that of 2.2 mm which was found for Jprocera. Overall strength properties of the handsheet made from two agricultural raw materials were significantly lower than those made from Jprocera pulp. Wheat straw handsheets also had higher strength properties than those made from date palm midribs with an exception of their tear index. Based on the results of this study it appears that both types of raw materials, date palm midribs and wheat straw could have a potential to manufacture pulp and paper with accepted properties so that such underutilized species can be converted into value-added products.