Mad About Berries

How To Grow Mango Tree From Seed

Growing a mango tree from seed is an exciting and rewarding project for gardeners interested in cultivating this delicious tropical fruit.

While growing from seed takes longer than using grafted saplings, it offers the satisfaction of nurturing a tree from its earliest stages.

Published: May 2, 2023.

mango tree

Seed Selection and Germination

To begin, select a fresh, ripe mango from a variety that grows well in your region. The seed within the fruit, called a "stone," is what you will use for germination. Follow these steps to prepare and germinate your mango seed:

  • Clean the seed: Remove the flesh from the mango and clean the seed thoroughly to eliminate any residue. Be careful not to damage the seed when handling it.
  • Extract the seed from the husk: Carefully open the husk using a knife or scissors, being cautious not to cut into the seed itself. Remove the seed from the husk, which should resemble a large, flattened bean.
  • Prepare for germination: Moisten a paper towel or a piece of cloth, then wrap the seed in it. Place the wrapped seed in a plastic bag or airtight container to maintain humidity.
  • Store and monitor: Keep the container in a warm, dark location, maintaining a temperature of around 70°F to 85°F. Check the seed regularly for signs of germination, which usually occurs within 1-3 weeks.

mango pit and seed

Planting the Germinated Seed

Once the mango seed has sprouted, it is time to plant it:

  • Prepare the pot: Choose a container with drainage holes and fill it with a well-draining potting mix, preferably a mix of equal parts peat moss, perlite, and vermiculite.
  • Plant the seed: Place the germinated seed in the pot with the root pointing downwards and the sprout slightly above the soil surface. Cover the seed with about half an inch of potting mix.
  • Water and care: Water the planted seed gently and keep the soil consistently moist but not waterlogged. Place the pot in a warm, sunny location, ensuring that the seedling receives at least 6 hours of direct sunlight daily.

mango sprouting

Caring for the Mango Seedling

As your mango seedling grows, it is essential to provide proper care to ensure healthy development:

  • Watering: Keep the soil evenly moist but avoid overwatering, which can lead to root rot. As the seedling grows, water deeply and less frequently, allowing the top layer of soil to dry out between waterings.
  • Fertilizing: After the seedling has developed several sets of leaves, start fertilizing with a balanced, slow-release fertilizer, following the package instructions. Apply fertilizer every 6-8 weeks during the growing season.
  • Pruning: Prune the seedling to encourage branching and a strong framework. When it reaches about 3 feet tall, pinch back the growing tip to promote lateral growth.
  • Repotting: As the mango tree grows, it will eventually outgrow its container. Repot the tree into progressively larger pots as needed, ensuring the new pot has adequate drainage.

watering small mango

Transplanting and Further Care

Once the mango tree has reached about 2-4 years old and is strong enough, transplant it into the ground or a large container. Continue to provide appropriate care, including watering, fertilizing, and pruning.

Note that mango trees grown from seeds may take anywhere from 5-8 years to produce fruit, and the quality of fruit may differ from the parent tree.

Few Final Words

Growing a mango tree from seed can be a fascinating and fulfilling experience for gardeners who enjoy the challenge of nurturing a plant from its very beginning. Although it may take longer to produce fruit than grafted saplings, the satisfaction of cultivating a tree from seed is unmatched.

small mango plant

By carefully selecting and germinating the seed, providing proper care to the seedling, and eventually transplanting the tree into the ground or a large container, you'll be well on your way to enjoying your own delicious, homegrown mangoes.

With patience, dedication, and the right care, your mango tree will eventually reward you with a bountiful harvest, allowing you to enjoy the sweet taste of your efforts for years to come.

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