How To Grow A Mango Seed In Water

Ever wondered what to do with that mango seed once you’ve enjoyed the fruit? Turns out, it’s the start of an exciting journey: growing your own mango tree.

Despite its initial challenges, nurturing a mango seed in water is a rewarding experience. Whether you choose to do it indoors or outdoors, it’s a delightful mix of patience and fascination.

With adequate sunlight and care, your mango seedling will thrive, promising future harvests of delicious fruit. While they can adapt to indoor environments, mango trees truly flourish in warmer climates, bringing a touch of the tropics to your backyard.

Botanical Name Mangifera indica
Common name Mango
Family Anacardiaceae
Plant Type Perennial
Height Up to 100 feet tall
Sunlight Full Sun
Soil Well-drained, sandy, loamy soil
pH 5.5 to 7.5
USDA 10-11
Native Area South Asia (India, Bangladesh, Myanmar)

Preparation

Types of Mango

When choosing a mango variety for water germination, consider smaller dwarf varieties for limited space. Here are some suggestions:

  • Palmer (6-8 feet): This dwarf mango variety boasts a compact size and abundant fruit production.
  • Irwin (8-10 feet): With its sweet, fiber-free flesh and moderate height, Irwin mangoes are excellent candidates for water germination.
  • Nam Doc Mai (6-8 feet): Originating from Thailand, Nam Doc Mai mangoes are prized for their exceptional flavor and compact tree size.
  • Ice Cream Mango (8-10 feet): The Ice Cream Mango variety produces creamy, smooth-textured fruit with a hint of vanilla flavor.
  • Cogshall (8-10 feet): Known for its delicious, fiberless fruit and moderate height, the Cogshall mango is an excellent choice for water germination.
Types of Mango
Types of Mango

 

Mango Seed

Look for a viable seed obtained from a healthy, ripe mango, as these are more likely to germinate successfully. Carefully remove the flesh surrounding the seed to locate the seed husk within.

Once the seed is exposed, cleanse it thoroughly to eliminate any remaining flesh. Allow the seed to air-dry in a warm, dry area for approximately a day and a half, ensuring a consistent temperature and avoiding exposure to extreme heat or cold during this time.

After the seed has dried, the next step involves removing its hard, woody outer shell. This can be done by gently prying apart the shell using a sturdy knife, taking care to follow the ridge along the edge of the shell for assistance.

If needed, sandpaper can be used to help achieve a smooth surface. When examining the seed, ensure it retains a tan and fresh appearance, indicating its viability for planting.

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Exercise caution, as seeds exposed to prolonged cold temperatures may shrivel up and turn grey, rendering them unsuitable for germination.

Mango Seed
Mango Seed

 

Water

Check the pH of the water by using a pH testing kit. Mango seeds thrive in slightly acidic to neutral conditions, ideally with a pH range of 5.5 to 7.0. If the pH of your water falls outside this range, you can adjust it accordingly by adding pH-up or pH-down solutions, readily available at gardening stores.

Next, ensure that the water temperature is suitable for seed germination, typically ranging between 75°F to 85°F (24°C to 29°C). Avoid extreme temperature fluctuations, as they can hinder the germination process and overall growth of the seed.

Select a clean, small container or jar to fill with water. It’s crucial to use filtered or distilled water to prevent any chemicals or impurities that could impede seed germination. Tap water may contain chlorine or other additives that could be harmful to the seed’s development.

 

Growing A Mango Seed In Water

Place the prepared seed in a container of water, ensuring it’s fully submerged with the pointed end down and the rounded end up. This allows the seed to absorb water and kickstart the germination process.

Maintain the water level, ensuring the seed remains submerged without overfilling the container, which can drown the seed. Position the container in a warm, well-lit area with plenty of indirect sunlight, as mango seeds require warmth and light for successful germination.

Over the following weeks, monitor the seed closely for signs of growth. Look for a small crack in the seed’s shell, indicating germination has begun, followed by the emergence of a tiny root from the bottom and a shoot from the top of the seed.

Growing A Mango Seed In Water
Growing A Mango Seed In Water

Once the root and shoot have grown to about 6 inches in height, consider transferring the seedling to soil.

Dig a hole twice the size of the root ball, ensuring the soil is well-draining. Plant the seedling with the root facing downward, water lightly, and provide sufficient sunlight to promote healthy growth.

Transplanting
Transplanting

 

Care for Mango Plant

Here are main requirements to care for a mango plant:

  • Thrive in full sun with 6-8 hours light per day.
  • Grow in well-draining soil with pH 5.5-7.0.
  • Prune regularly in their initial 2-3 years.
  • Maintain temperatures within the range of 70-90°F (21-32°C).

 

Light

Provide indirect sunlight when caring for mango seeds in water, positioning them near a sunny window or under a grow light. Ensure full sun 6-8 hours per day for transplanted seedlings, maintaining warmth and light to support healthy growth and fruit production.

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Soil

Ensure the soil is well-draining, rich in organic matter, and maintains a pH level between 5.5-7.0. Proper soil conditions promote healthy root development and growth, essential for robust mango trees.

 

Water

When tending to transplanted mango trees, water 9-12 litre per day. As roots mature, adjust watering frequency, aiming to water thoroughly so excess drains out. Monitor soil dryness, irrigating when the top 2 inches are parched.

 

Temperature and Humidity

Keep temperatures within the range of 70-90°F (21-32°C) and humidity levels around 50-60%.

As tropical trees, mangoes require protection from cold drafts and frost. Consistent warmth and humidity nurture their optimal growth and fruit production.

 

Pruning

Prune young mango trees regularly in their initial 2-3 years, keeping them compact. Once surpassing 1.0m in height, trim them down to 0.6-0.7m, including horizontal branches.

Besides, remove dead or diseased branches, improve air circulation, and shape the canopy for optimal sunlight exposure. Conduct pruning in late winter or early spring to promote healthy growth and fruit production.

 

Fertilizer

Select a balanced fertilizer with a formulation like 6-6-6 or 8-3-9, providing essential nutrients for healthy growth. Apply fertilizer every 2-3 months during the growing season, starting in early spring and continuing through summer.

Avoid excessive nitrogen, especially during flowering, to prevent vegetative growth at the expense of fruit production. Additionally, incorporate organic matter into the soil annually to enrich its fertility and support robust growth and fruiting.

Care for Mango Plant
Care for Mango Plant

 

Pests and Diseases

Mango plants face various threats from pests and diseases, including powdery mildew, fungal leaf spot, mites, aphids, and mealybugs.

Powdery mildew manifests as a powdery white substance on leaves, while fungal leaf spots cause dark lesions. Mites, aphids, and mealybugs feed on plant sap, leading to leaf curling and distortion.

Regular monitoring and swift intervention with pesticides or organic solutions are vital for preserving mango plant vitality and productivity. Implementing cultural practices like proper pruning and irrigation further fortifies the plant to manage these threats.

Pests and Diseases
Pests and Diseases

 

Common Problems

No Germination

If mango seeds fail to germinate in water, various factors may be at play. Ensure the seeds are viable and healthy before attempting germination.

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Adjust water temperature to around 75-85°F (24-29°C) and maintain pH levels between 5.5-7.0. Consider using a germination aid like gibberellic acid to stimulate sprouting.

 

Leggy Growth

Overwatering can lead to root rot, where the roots become waterlogged and suffocate, resulting in stunted growth or seedling death. To prevent this, ensure the water level is appropriate, allowing the top inch of soil to dry out between waterings.

 

Root Rot

Inadequate sunlight can lead to leggy growth, where the seedlings stretch towards the light source in search of more sunlight. To prevent this, place the seedlings in a location with bright, indirect sunlight or provide supplemental grow lights.

 

Leaf Droop

Overwatering or underwatering can cause leaf droop, indicating stress. Ensure consistent watering to maintain soil moisture balance. Additionally, enrich soil with magnesium and potassium to strengthen leaves and support photosynthesis, promoting healthy growth.

 

Harvest

After 2-3 years you can harvest dwarf varieties. When the fruit develops a rich color, fragrant aroma, and yields slightly to gentle pressure, use pruning shears to cut the stem, leaving a short portion attached to the fruit to minimize damage.

Harvest
Harvest

 

Preservation

After harvest you can enjoy fresh mango fruits. Additionally, consider freezing mango slices or puree for later use in smoothies, desserts, or sauces. You can also dry mango slices for a chewy, sweet snack, or canning mango slices in syrup for long-term storage.

Preservation
Preservation

Nurturing a mango seed in water is an enchanting journey from seedling to flourishing tree, offering the delight of homegrown produce and the fulfillment of watching nature’s wonders unfold in your own home.

How To Grow A Mango Seed In Water
How To Grow A Mango Seed In Water

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