Friday 10 April 2020

Mango Tree - an Update

In August 2017 I wrote a post about unsuitable material for bonsai. Most of the trees I discussed in that post were trees I'd grown from seed, in some cases hoping to turn them into bonsai. As I said at the time, however, I had no delusions that I could ever bonsai a mango tree, but I couldn't resist the temptation to grow my own mangoes.

By the time I wrote that post my mango tree was seven years old and was flowering for the first time.

Mango flower buds - August 2017 

I was thrilled, but also a little bit disappointed when I read that it was best for the health of the tree to remove the first season's flowers. I really didn't want to do it.

In the end the decision was taken out of my hands as a really heavy hail storm did the job for me.

My tree grew very little for the rest of that summer and in spring of 2018 there wasn't a trace of a flower anywhere.

Finally in spring of 2019 it started flowering again so I moved it into my greenhouse - near the door, so that it had decent exposure to sun and wind, but was protected from hail.

It worked. Over the last few months it's had three green mangoes dangling from its branches.

I'd pretty much given up hope of them ripening though as the stems they were dangling from looked like they were dying, but a couple of weeks ago they started turning orange.

Tree with 3 mangoes - April 2020

I'm not convinced they'll be edible, but when they look ready I'm planning to cut them open just in case.

Update: The day after I published this post one of the smaller mangoes fell off the tree. Although it was probably the smallest mango I've ever had, the inside was no worse than the mangoes I buy from stores. It tasted fine.

Perhaps the fruit would have grown better in a bigger pot. If I can find a suitable pot at home, maybe I'll slip it into a bigger pot once the rest of the fruit comes off.

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