Mango, which is commonly referred to as Mangifera indica , is actually the fruit of a whole genus of citrus trees. This yellow or orange fruit is very popular for its slightly sour taste, and it originates from India and Burma.
Many of the species that are currently consumed have been obtained by grafting or cultivating, and it is used in a large number of dishes in gastronomy such as India. If you want to learn how to grow your own mangoes at home to be able to enjoy its fruits first-hand in an ecological and economic way, keep reading this article in which we explain how and when to germinate and plant a mango .
How to germinate a mango
Before being able to plant the mango seed, it will be necessary to make it germinate. To do this, the first step is to extract the seed from the fruit, which is protected in a shell or bone. It is important that you use a mango seed that you have just consumed, since it loses its germination capacity very quickly. Follow these steps to germinate a mango seed :
- Very carefully, strain the tip of a knife through the wide end of the shell, and make small movements up and down to give it play and open it. It is very important that you take all possible care not to damage the seed inside.
- Once you’ve opened the shell, scoop out the seed and prepare a napkin or several pieces of absorbent kitchen paper to wrap it in.
- Place the seed wrapped in the absorbent paper in a container of its approximate size, and moisten the paper with water until it does not absorb more. Once you’re done, remove the excess water.
- Now that the paper provides the seed with the darkness and moisture it needs, place the container somewhere in the house with a warm temperature. Remember that mango is a tropical plant and requires a warm environment.
- Moisten the paper again each time it dries, but always trying to avoid a puddle of excess water. In about ten days or two weeks, your mango seed should have already produced a first root a few centimeters long. When the root is over about half the length of the seed, it is ready for you to plant.
When to plant a mango
Now that you have the germinated mango seed , you will have to plant the mango in a pot . Later, when it has grown properly, you can transplant it to its final location.
Since it is a fruit tree with a tropical climate, the best time to plant it is in the warm months, avoiding the cold of winter in the first months of the tree’s life. A good time is, therefore, around March .
How to plant a mango step by step
This is the step by step to plant a mango at home easily:
- Prepare a pot about 30 cm deep with a mixture of generic substrate and a fifth or quarter of worm castings. This will provide the seed with the necessary nutrients for those first delicate weeks.
- With a pencil or stick, poke a hole in the center of the pot about the length of the root of the handle.
- Being very careful not to damage or split the root, try to place the seed in the pot so that the root is inserted through the hole created for it.
- Cover the root completely with soil. It is not necessary for the seed to be covered, but the root must be protected. Moisten the substrate with water, avoiding as always puddles but providing enough moisture.
- Place the pot in a place in the house where it receives direct sunlight, although if you live in a very hot climate, try to remove it in the hours of greatest incidence. You can leave the napkin on the seed for the first few days or weeks, until you see the first sprout grow. In just a few weeks, your little tree will grow at full speed if all goes well.
Mango care – a basic guide
Mango is not a very demanding plant, and if you provide it with a suitable substrate and keep it moist, you should not have problems with its growth. Anyway, these are the basics on how to care for a mango tree properly so that it grows well and bears fruit:
- Even if you have to keep your soil moist, not encharques or never inundate the pot, and if you have dish underneath, always remove the excess water drain after watering.
- If you have homemade organic compost , you can add it in moderation once a month.
- Place the plant in an area that receives a lot of direct sunlight , unless your area is particularly strong.
- When the tree has grown too large for its pot, feel free to transplant it. Keep in mind that these trees can reach 12 meters in height, so choose a place large enough for it if you place it outside.