Mango Techno Guide (Part 1)
Mangoes belong to the genus Mangifera, consisting of numerous species of tropical fruiting trees in the flowering plant family Anacardiaceae. The mango is indigenous to the Indian Subcontinent. Cultivated in many tropical regions and distributed widely in the world, mango is one of the most extensively exploited fruits for food, juice, flavor, fragrance and color, making it a common ingredient in new functional foods often called superfruits. Its leaves are ritually used as floral decorations at weddings and religious ceremonies.
Prospects and Strengths
* Mango growing is in line with the initiatives of both government and private sectors in terms of production, processing and marketing support
* Once productive, a 10-15 year old tree will yield approximately 500 kilos
* There is a niche market for both fresh and processed mangoes locally and abroad. The export market is expanding
* Technologies from propagation to post-harvest handling have been tested,verified and adopted nationwide
* Processing technologies are also available and continuing efforts are exerted to develop new products
* There is a pool of experts in the country that can be tapped to provide technical assistance to mango growers and processors
* Research and development activities on emerging pests and diseases are given priority by relevant agencies of the government
* Expansion of large production areas in Mindanao which are free from typhoons
Favorable Growing Conditions
* Elevation: within 600 meters above sea level (400 m considered ideal)
* Temperature: 21°C-27°C
* Weather for inducing maturity of vegetativeparts and flowering: distinct wet and dry (3 to 5 months-dry)
* Weather for fruit development: plenty of sunlight
* Ideal soil: loamy, relatively high in organic matter
* Soil pH: 6.0 to 7.0
* Soil texture: good water holding capacity
* Topography: flat to rolling, not exceeding 45 degrees gradient
* Drainage: well-drained soil; less moisture level needed during maturation of leaves and buds, flowering, fruit set and ripening
* Distance of planting: depending on variety
* originated from India, Burma and Malaya (Indo-Burma region)
* tree has coarse, large and conical trunk with shallow and small cracks on bark, canopy dome shaped
* fruit is elongated and kidney-shaped, weighs about 240 grams, with thin, yellow pulp, very tender taste and slight aroma
* originated from India, Burma and Malaya (Indo-Burma region)
* tree has upright growth, open crown; has deeper cracks on bark
* kidney-shaped fruit weighing about 230 grams; distinct beak on the apex, flesh is fibrous and thick, light orange yellow and sweeter than ‘Carabao’ variety
* originated from India
* has compact crown and lower tree stand than ‘Carabao’ and ‘Pico’
* fruit is small to medium, rounded/oval, green skin with yellowish flesh and preferably eaten as green
There are two methods of propagating mango, namely, sexual and asexual propagation
A. Sexual propagation
– Growing of rootstocks
1. Extract seeds from ripe fruits
2. De-husk seeds to hasten germination
3. Sow the seeds in seed boxes or elevated plots. The ideal medium is a mixture of one part compost and the one part garden soil. Composting materials like sawdust, coconut coir dust, rice hull and other similar organic materials can also be used.
4. Water seed boxes or seed plots to maintain enough moisture. Provide drainage for excess water.
5. Transfer seedlings with 2 to 3 leaves in black plastic bags (7”x11”) filled with garden soil mixed with decomposed organic materials.
6. Note: Seeds germinate in 10-15 days from planting. Apply fertilizer (16-20-0 mixed with urea) 30 days after potting at the rate of ¾ teaspoon per bag.
7. Thereafter, spray foliar at weekly intervals.
8. Apply fertilizer again (same as step 6) every 30 days.
9. Spray with pesticide when the need arises. Most common problems are scale insects, cecid fly, corn silk beetle and anthracnose.
10. Rootstocks are ready for grafting upon attaining “pencil size” stem diameter (10-12 months germination).
B. Asexual propagation (grafting, budding, inarching, etc.)
1. Grow the rootstock seedlings up to pencil size diameter (8 to 12 months)
2. Get mature scion (pencil size with plump end) from healthy mother trees having superior characteristics
3. Remove the leaves and clean the scion. Immediately place inside plastic bag to prevent transpiration and drying up
4. Cut the stem of the rootstock preferably at the tender joint near the active growing shoot one foot from the base. Make an incision, ¼ inch deep from the cut, at the center of the stem
5. Make a clean V cut at the base of the scion
6. Insert the scion’s V cut base at the incision of the rootstock, seeing to it that the cambium layer or skin of both the scion and the rootstock meet
7. Bind them together gently but firmly with plastic tape. Wrap the entire scion from the joint to the tip to prevent drying
8. Place the newly grafted seedlings in partly-shaded environment
9. Water regularly until flushing (appearance of new leaves) occurs. This is usually observed in 15 to 20 days
10. When this happens, remove the plastic strip that covers the tip to enhance growth. Leave the strip that binds the joint.
11. Grafts are ready for disposal after 8 to 10 months. Hardening is however, recommended prior to field planting
12. Grafts not sold after 1 year should be re-bagged using bigger plastic containers
1. Prepare lay-out of the farm
There are four lay-outs to choose from:
i. Square system (how tos)
ii. Triangle system (how tos)
iii. Quincunx system (how tos)
iv. Contour system (how tos)
2. Place stakes (markers) at the site of the planting
3. Dig one cubic meter hole and refill with fertile soil (usually soil mixed with decomposed organic materials and fertilizer).
4. Pour water into the hole and allow the water to be absorbed by the soil.
5. Remove the plastic bag carefully.
6. Plant the graft in the center and cover the hole with the remaining soil.
7. Protect the newly-planted graft from intense heat by providing shed using coconut leaves.
8. Apply mulch to conserve soil moisture.
Distance of Planting
Factors to consider:
* topography of the land
* development program of the farm
* soil fertility
* planting of intercrops – kinds of intercrops
* (to include a table containing recommended distance of planting and total number of trees per hectare using different systems of planting)
Pruning and Thinning
As a general rule, the farmer should begin pruning and thinning when the crown or foliage of the trees starts to meet. Pruning is the removal of undesirable vegetative parts of the tree, usually the crowded branches. Insect-infested and diseased branches, leaves, flowers or other plant parts need to be removed also.
An integral part of pruning is training the canopy to a manageable size, shape and height.
Type of Canopy Training:
* open center
* modified ladder
Pruning is done to allow sunlight to penetrate in the crown and free air circulation, thereby reducing incidence of insect pests and diseases. In general, pruned trees produce bigger and high quality fruits compared to unpruned trees.
The best time to prune is after harvest. When done during summer, the wounded parts dry and heal faster.
Other Considerations when Pruning
1. Select only the parts to be pruned (minimal pruning)
2. Cut small branches first followed by large branches (minimal pruning only)
3. Always make a clean cut at the base of the branch and avoid leaving stumps where unwanted water sprouts may grow
4. Paint or spray the open cut with fungicide, tar or disinfectant when pruning is done during wet season
5. Remove all debris and maintain cleanliness of the surrounding areas.
In the first five years, the trees need high rate of nitrogen fertilizers. To promote faster vegetative growth, organic fertilizer application is also recommended. As the trees reach bearing age, more emphasis should be given on phosphorous and potassium. Phosphorous fertilizer promotes root and flower development while potassium is for fruiting and ripening. Apply fertilizer containing 4-5% phosphoric acid and 8-15% potash.
Important Considerations in Fertilizer Application:
1. When applying fertilizer, dig a few holes (6-8 holes) around the tree or a canal within the area covered by the canopy. For big trees, follow canopy drip line.
2. The zone of maximum and efficient utilization of fertilizers is 30 deep and 100 cm from the trunk of 5-10 year old trees. This goes a little farther as the tree crown becomes wider
3. The preferred time of fertilizer application for non-bearing trees or at the juvenile stage is at the start and before the end of the rainy season, when the soil is still wet. Fertilizer can also be applied during the dry season if there is irrigation.
4. The procedure for fertilizer application is similar for both bearing and young trees.
5. At flowering, spraying of foliar fertilizer is recommended as supplement.
In inducing mango trees to bear flower, the following should be considered:
1. Different mango varieties have varied flowering and fruiting habits. The ‘Carabao’ variety under normal conditions bears fruits every two to three years.
2. Chemical flower inducers should not be used under the following circumstances:
* When the tree is too small or still young
* When the leaves and buds are young
* When the tree is weak and sickly
* During rainy days
* Just after harvest or when the tree has fruits or is in flushing stage
3. High dosage of flower inducers (2.0 to 3.0% KNO3 ) should be used when:
* Trees are just starting to mature
* Leaves and buds are maturing
* The tree is healthy with vigorous buds and leaves
* During cloudy weather
* Sprayed six to seven months after harvest
4. Use low dosage of flower inducers (1.0 to 2.0% KNO3 ) when:
* Trees are big, old or fully mature
* Leaves and buds are fully mature
* Tree is healthy with dormant buds
* Sprayed during sunny weather
* Sprayed seven to nine months after harvest
5. Induce flowering only once a year
6. From flowering to harvest, it takes 7-8 months to rejuvenate and accumulate enough nutrients for the next fruiting season
7. Trees that bear fruits last season but have not flushed should not be induced to flower
8. Spraying should be done when the tree and leaves are dry and with no expected rain within the next 6 hours
Potassium nitrate is the generic name of chemical flower inducer in mango. The chemical symbol of this compound is KNO3. This contains 13% nitrogen and 46% potash, thus, 13-0-46. When sprayed, it supplies the potassium deficiency of the tree and in the process, induces flowering.
When spraying potassium nitrate, follow this simple steps:
1. Prepare a 1-3% solution depending on the condition of the tree.
2. Spray the leaves and branches totally wetting but not dripping.
3. Spray early in the morning (from sunrise to 9:00 am) or late in the afternoon (from 4:00 pm to 5:00 pm). This prevents leaf burning due to sunlight.
to be continued…