Mango- Mangifera Indica
Mango plants are native to South Asian countries like India, Pakistan, Philippines, and Bangladesh. It grows to a height of 5-15 meters with the crown radius about 5 meters long. Leaves are evergreen with 15-30 centimeters long and 5-15 centimeters broad. Leaves are orange-pink colored when they are young and turn dark green when they mature. Flowers are small and white with 5 petals about 5-10 mm long and have the mild sweet odor. Fruit varies in size, color (yellow, orange, green) and taste. Unpeeled mangoes have distinctive resinous, sweet smell with the single seed (contains plant embryo) in it.
Mango fruits can be eaten raw or juiced. It can also be used in ice-creams, desserts, cakes, sauces, jams, smoothies, chocolates and also in cooking dishes for flavoring.
A cup or 100 grams of diced mango contains 60 calories, 25 grams of carbohydrates, 5 grams of fiber, proteins, and fat. It is rich in vitamin C, vitamin A, vitamin B6, vitamin B12, vitamin D, magnesium, calcium, iron, and potassium. It is also a good source of dietary antioxidants like ascorbic acid, carotenoids, phenolic compounds and beta-carotene.
Conditions for Growing Mangoes
Seed : Hybrid or Natural Variety
Soil : Moist (high aluminum content) and Well-drained Soil
Seed Germination : 1-3 Weeks
Location : Sunny Site (8 hours per day)
Temperature : 70-80 F
Fertilizers : Organic Compost
Plant Height : 10-15 feet
Can I Grow Mango from Seed?
If you have enough space you can grow your own mango tree and enjoy the sweet fruits. Check for the environment whether it is suitable to grow mangoes. It thrives best in summer (March to mid-June) season. It grows well near equator regions i.e. prefers more sunlight.
Buy mango seeds and place them in a large pot or at outdoors. Use moist rich soil or sandy soil with a pH of 6-7. Make sure the soil has enough drainage. The size of the mango tree varies depending upon the plant species.
When seeds are placed in a pot, shift it to the warm, shaded area until the seed sprouts. It takes 1-3 weeks for the mango seeds to germinate. Now you can shift the seedlings to outdoors for better growth. Water regularly and fertilize with organic compounds. It grows to a height of 10-15 feet tall and maintains the temperature about 80 F. During the summer season, the plant produces a bunch and variety of sweet fruits. You can simply harvest and eat the raw fruit or juice.
Nutrient deficiency is due to the lack of nutrients like Nitrogen, Potassium, and Phosphorus in mango trees. Here is the list of deficiencies that delays or damages the growth of mango plant.
Nitrogen: leafy growth
Potassium: develops roots, flowers, seeds, and fruit
Phosphorus: for stem growth and movement of water in plants
You can only fertilize the mango tree when it suffers from the nutrient deficiency. It is a natural way of adding fertilizers to the soil or plant tissues to promote healthy and fast growth. Slowly release organic fertilizers that can dissolve quickly into the soil without causing any damage to the plant. Fertilizers rich in Nitrogen, Phosphorus, and Potassium are used for mango plant growth. Maintain the ratio of 6-6-6 for young plants and 10-10-10 for mature plants. Make sure you do not apply too much of fertilizers for young plants.
Pests and Diseases
Pests: Hoppers, mealy bugs, fruit-fly, scales, caterpillars
Diseases: Powdery mildew, anthracnose, scab, mango malformation, black rot
Pests and Diseases are the major factors that damage the growth of mangoes. The fragrance from its flowers helps to attract insects for pollination. Few pests spoil the leaves and cause great damage to the mango trees. Diseases are mainly due to change in temperature, soil, sunlight, and watering. Nutrient deficiency can also be the reason for it. We generally prefer organic methods (fertilizing by supplying sufficient nutrients) to prevent from diseases and Neem oil or organic sprays to deter pests.
It takes 3-4 months time for harvesting after flowering. You can’t judge the fruit whether it is ripe or not because of its varieties depending on size, shape, and color. When it is the green and hard wait for 2 more weeks. If the core of the mango fruit is yellow then it is ready to eat. Though you pick the fruit early you can ripen them at room temperature by keeping it on a paper roll.
Mango Plant Care | Precautions
To grow healthy and juicy mangoes in your home, proper plant care must be taken. Here are few precautions that help mango plants to grow effectively.
- The temperature should not drop below 30 F.
- Over-watering can burst the fruit to develop.
- Keep animals away from young mango plants.
- Cut the broken or diseased ones for establishing new stems.
- Fertilize mango trees once in 3 months and throughout the year for high yielding.
- When you transfer the seedlings to outdoors prefer warm (sunlight) and shaded region to grow.
Health Benefits of Mango
Eating or consuming mangoes (raw or juice) helps to live strong and happy life. It also cures the problems like digestion, diabetic, hair loss, skin irritations, anemia and acne in humans that are listed below.
- Digestion: Mango plays a prominent role in curing acidity and indigestion problems. Digestive enzymes like esters, aldehydes, and terpenes help to improve the functioning of digestive system. It acts as the cleanser for stomach and intestines.
- Diabetes: It contains the enzymes like magneferin, katechol, and lactose that help to overcome the problems related with Diabetes.
- Heart problems: Take potassium in high amounts reduces the risk of cardiovascular diseases. It also lowers cholesterol levels and prevents from heart attacks.
- Prevents cancer: Antioxidants like quercetin, pectin, fisetin in mango protects the body against colon, leukemia, breast and prostate cancer.
- Brain functioning: Consuming mango juice (containing vitamin B6) helps to maintain and improve brain functioning. It is also responsible for effective nerve functioning.
- Improves eye health: Mango contains flavonoids, alpha-carotene, beta-carotene and cryptoxanthin helps to keep your eyes healthy, enhances your vision and prevents from various diseases.
- For pregnant women: Good amount of iron helps to maintain HB level and proper oxygen flow in pregnant women. It also solves the problem during menstruation, relaxes muscles and prevents abortion due to the presence of calcium and magnesium.
- Boosts immune system: Powerful caretonoids helps to immunize the body & free from bacteria and toxins. It helps to protect against the free radicals that can harm your internal systems.
- Controls Blood pressure: Mango contains selenium, calcium, iron and phosphorous compounds and is good for BP patients. It also helps to cure acne, skin problems and allergies.
It’s fun to grow and enjoy mangoes starting from seeds in your garden space that monitors your health and keeps surrounding hygiene. If you have wonderful ideas about growing mango trees, please share your experience with us.