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Mangoes are not only delicious tropical fruits, but they also make stunning additions to any garden or home landscape. If you’ve ever wondered about growing your own mango tree from seed, you’re in for a rewarding journey. In this comprehensive guide, we’ll walk you through the step-by-step process of growing a mango tree from seed and provide essential care tips to ensure your mango plant thrives.

This mango seed was germinated and sprouted during the Melbourne summer around December 20th 2023. About 3 months later, by late March 2024 it reached about 1 foot to 1.5 feet. Hopefully it has become acclimated to Melbourne weather but we’ll see over the cooler months.

Step 1: Choosing the Right Mango Seed

To start your mango-growing adventure, begin by selecting a ripe and healthy mango. Choose a mango variety that you enjoy, as this will be the type of mango your tree will eventually produce. You also need to be mindful of which varieties of mangoes grow well in your climate. Bowen mango (AKA Bowen Special or Kensington Pride), Nam doc mai and Keitt all reportedly do well in cooler climates such as Melbourne.

Keep in mind that mangoes from grocery stores may be treated to inhibit sprouting, so it’s best to select a mango from a local farmer’s market or a tree that is grown organically, where possible.

Step 2: Extracting the Seed

Once you’ve chosen your mango, carefully cut away the flesh, leaving the seed exposed. Be cautious not to damage the seed as you remove the flesh. The mango seed is flat and wide, resembling a large, almond-shaped pit. Gently wash the seed to remove any remaining fruit residue.

Step 3: Preparing the Mango Seed for Planting

To enhance germination, you should peel off the outer husk of the mango seed. This can be achieved by using a blunt knife or by carefully wedging a small spoon between the seam and gently prying it open. This will help the seed absorb water more efficiently. However, be careful not to damage the inner seed while doing this. Alternatively, you can plant the seed without removing the husk, but this may slow down the germination process.

Step 4: Germinating the Mango Seed

There are two common methods for germinating mango seeds: the water method and the soil method.

For the water method, fill a glass or jar with water and submerge the mango seed halfway. Change the water regularly and wait for the seed to sprout roots and a shoot. This process may take a few weeks.

For the soil method, plant the mango seed directly into a pot with well-draining soil. Plant the seed vertically with the flat side down, leaving the top part exposed. Water the soil regularly and place the pot in a warm, sunny location. Cover the pot with a see through plastic container to make a mini greenhouse. Germination can take several weeks to a few months.

Step 5: Transplanting the Mango Seedling

Once your mango seed has sprouted and grown to about 6 inches in height, it’s time to transplant it into a larger pot or directly into the ground. Choose a location with full sun exposure, as mango trees thrive in tropical climates.

When transplanting, handle the seedling carefully to avoid damaging the delicate roots. Ensure the soil in the new container or planting area is well-draining to prevent waterlogged roots.

Care Tips for Growing Mango Trees

  • Sunlight: Mango trees love sunlight. Ensure your tree receives at least 6-8 hours of direct sunlight daily.
  • Watering: While mango trees are drought-tolerant once established, young trees need regular watering. Keep the soil consistently moist but not waterlogged.
  • Fertilisation: Feed your mango tree with a balanced fertiliser during the growing season. Apply a slow-release fertiliser rich in micronutrients.
  • Pruning: Once big enough, prune your mango tree regularly to maintain a manageable size, remove dead or diseased branches, and encourage a bushier growth habit.
  • Protection from Frost: Mango trees are sensitive to frost. If you live in a region with cold winters, consider planting your tree in a container that can be moved indoors during the winter months. You can also use frost cloth to protect younger mango plants.
  • Pest Control: Keep an eye out for pests like aphids and scale insects. Use organic insecticides or insecticidal soap to keep them at bay.

Growing a mango tree from seed can be a fulfilling and enjoyable experience. With patience and proper care, you can watch your mango seed transform into a flourishing tree that bears delicious fruit. Follow the steps outlined in this guide and implement the care tips to ensure your mango tree thrives and becomes a beautiful addition to your garden or home landscape. Happy growing!