The Mango is the choicest fruit of most of the people in India.The Mango fruit contains 0.6% protein, fair amount of carbohydrates(11.8%), minerals like calcium, phosphorus & iron (0.3%) and is a rich source of vitamin A (4800 units) B1 & B2 90mg and vitamin C 13mg per 100g of pulp. The fruit is consumed at all its developmental stages.
Climate and Soil
Mango can be grown in a wide variety of soils provided the soil is deep without any hard pan or compact Kankar in atleast top 4 feet soil. The electrical conductivity of the soil should be less than 1.0 mmhos. whereas calcium carbonate and lime concretion should be less than 10 and 20 per cent, respectively. Soil should have a pH less than 8.5 up to the depth of 60 cm and the water table should be below 3 meters.
Mango is essentially a tropical crop, but can grow between temperature range of 0'–45'C. However, the ideal temperature for mango cultivation is 24–27'C during the growing season along with high humidity. Young trees and actively growing shoots get killed at temperature falling below –1o C and small developing fruits are damaged if the temperature suddenly falls below 4.5'C.
Rainfall during flowering adversely affects final fruit set. Winds may also cause great damage to the crop by way of fruit drop,breakage of limbs or even uprooting of the plants. High velocity winds also affect the process of pollination. Hot summer wind (loo) damages the fruit by causing severe fruit drop.
Dusehri (1967) : It is a mid season and the most widely grown cultivar of the region. Fruits mature in the first week of July. Fruits are small to medium, skin medium-thick, smooth and yellow; flesh firm, fibrillates, pleasantly sweet, acidity 0.2%, stone small and thin; keeping quality good. It has a tendency towards regular bearing and is well adapted to Punjab conditions and yields 150 kg fruit per tree.
Langra (1967) : Fruit maturity occurs in the second week of July. Fruit medium to large, skin medium thick, smooth, green, flesh fiber less, lemon yellow with fine taste and flavor with TSS 15.7%,acidity 0.3%, stone medium in thickness. The yield of this variety is more than 100 kg per plant.
Alphonso (2000) : Fruit maturity takes place in the first week of July. Fruit medium in size, oval with prominent ventral shoulder,fruit color greenish light yellow with light pinkish blush towards the proximal end, skin thin and smooth, flesh cadmium yellow and firm, fiber less, superb taste, captivating flavor, juice abundant,TSS 17.5%, acidity 0.35% and stone is small. The tree yields 70kg.
Out of collections made from a survey undertaken in and outside Punjab, the following collections were considered ideal and recommended for cultivation.
Gangian Sandhuri (GN-19) (2006) : Tree is medium in vigor,medium to heavy bearer, fruit yield 83.7 kg/tree. Fruit large, ovate oblong, basal sinus cavity absent, black flat, skin thick, tough, sidhuriblush at shoulders with yellow base, pulp orange in color, very good taste with pleasant flavor, juice abundant, stone and fiber and fruit ripens in the end of July.
GN1 (1981) : Its trees bear regularly and yield a medium crop.Fruits mature in the second week of July. Fruit is medium in size,ovate, basal sinus shallow, beak and apex pointed. Skin smooth,green at maturity, pulp orange color, juice thin but abundant with TSS 19%, stone small and fiber absent.
GN2 (1981) : An alternate but heavy bearer. Fruit maturity occurs in the third week of July. Fruits medium to large in size, oval-oblong,ventral shoulder prominent, sinus absent, beak depressed apexbroadly pointed. Skin thick, pulp yellow, TSS 25%, stone small,fibrous all over.
GN3 (1981) : A large and spreading tree. Fruit matures in the second week of July. Regular but a heavy cropper in alternate years.Fruits medium in size, ovate, basal sinus absent, beak and apexpointed, skin thick, surface smooth, spinach green with sparce glands.Pulp yellow, juice abundant, TSS 22%, stone medium in size.
GN4 (1981) : Tree large with drooping limbs, bears regularly.Fruits mature in the third week of July. Fruit extra large, ovate oblong. Ventral shoulder prominent. Sinus slight beak prominent, apexpointed, skin yellowish green with sparse glands. Juice abundant,slightly thick with 21% TSS, stone large and sparsely fibrous.
GN5 (1981) : Tree medium in size, spreading, dome-shaped,and alternate bearer. Fruit maturity occurs late in the season. Fruit medium in size, ovate, basal sinus shallow, dorsal shoulder sloping,ventral shoulder prominent, back round, sinus shallow, beak pointed,apex broadly pointed. Skin thick and smooth. Juice slightly thick,TSS 22%. Stone medium in size, fiber absent.
GN6 (1981) : A small spreading tree, bears alternately. Fruit maturity occurs in mid July. Fruit large, skin color yellow with red blush at the basal end. Popularly known as Punjab Beauty. Pulp yellow, juice abundant with pleasant flavor, TSS 17%. Stone medium,oblong, fibrous all over.
GN7 (1981) : A medium sized tree, bears medium crop regularly.Fruit maturity occurs in the middle of July. Fruit medium in size, skin smooth with numerous glands, pulp orange in color, juice plenty and tasty, stone large in size, fibrous all over the stone.
Although there are several methods of propagation but side grafting has been found to be more efficient and cheaper than in arching and has been recommended in the Punjab. The method is detailed below:
Rootstock Raising : Stones of selected healthy seedling mango trees are sown in August. Germination takes place in 2-3 weeks depending upon the medium. These seedlings along with stones are transplanted to the nursery beds when their leaves are still brown in color and expanded to one fourth of their normal size. During transplanting their tap roots be pruned suitably retaining most of the fibrous roots. The seed beds are regularly watered so that no transplanted stone dies till properly established. The seedlings need to be protected from frost during the cold months. Seedlings resume growth in the end of February or the beginning of March and become graftable from March onward.
Grafting : For grafting select healthy scion shoots with plump,terminal buds from the last mature flush. Reject scion shoots with swollen, protruded auxiliary buds as they are known to produce malformed plants. Remove the leaf blades from the selected scion shoots leaving the petioles intact. In about 7-10 days the petioles drop and the terminal buds become swollen and ready for grafting.One horizontal cut (1.25 cm) and two vertical cuts (4.0 cm each) are made on the stock at a height of about 15 cm from the ground and the bark of the demarcated portion is lifted away from the rootstock.An appropriate slanting cut is also made on the base of the scion stick to expose cambium. The length of the scion stick should not be more than 7.5 cm otherwise considerable breakage of the grafted plants in the nursery occurs. The prepared scion stick is inserted under the bark flap of the rootstock. The bark flap of the rootstock is restored in its position and the graft joint is tied securely with apolythene strip of 150-200 gauge thickness. After the completion of grafting a part of the top of rootstock is lopped to encourage growthof the scion. In Punjab the propagation period is March to September but July to September is the best time.
Mango being an evergreen fruit plant can be planted during February-March and August-September in the pits (1 x 1 x 1 m)prepared about a month earlier. The best planting time is August September when the weather relatively cools down.The planting is done at 9 x 9 meter distance for the grafted varieties and 10 x 10 meters for the sucking type mangoes in the square system. However, planting can also be done according to Hexagonal system as this system accommodates 15 per cent mo replants per unit area.
Training and Pruning
Mango hardly needs any training or pruning. Normally, a young graft is allowed to grow unhampered for 3-4 years. The main scaffold branches should be selected on the grafted plants in such a way that these are spaced 20-25 cm apart on the main stem. No further training is required for giving a proper shape to the plant. Branches crossing in the center should be removed and there should be no branch too close to the ground.After a period of about 20-25 years, when the tree grows very tall, the fruiting is limited to only the peripheral part, leaving the central tree part mostly unproductive. At this stage, the trees should beheaded back at the secondary branches to invigorate the trees and to increase their productivity.
Rejuvenation of old Unproductive Mango Trees
After attaining the age of about 30 years, mango trees produce less fruits of inferior quality. The production potential of such tree scan be revived by rejuvenation. Trees should be headed back at the height of 2 m from the crotch angle (approximately at 3.0 m from the ground level) in first week of January by retaining about four to five outward growing branches and rest should be thinned out. Apply Bordeaux paste on the cut ends and exposed branches should be white washed. The new shoots will emerge around the headed limbs.In June, retain 3-4 healthy outward growing shoots oriented at the proper distance on each stub. Trees will start bearing fruits after three years of rejuvenation.
Note: Proper monitoring and management practices to control the attack of stem and shoot borer should be followed. Remove the pruned wood immediately from the orchard.
Manures and Fertilizers
Ten tonnes of Mango fruit produced in one hectare of land use 67 kg N, 16 kg P2O5 and 73 kg K2O. To meet this requirement the following fertilizer schedule is recommended for ‘off’ year.Dose per tree (g) Age FYM Urea Superphosphate Muriate of(Years) (kg) Potash1-3 5-20 100-200 250-500 175-3504-6 25-50 200-400 500-750 350-7007-9 60-90 400-500 750-1000 700-100010 and above 100 500 1000 1000 During the ‘on’ year apply half kg additional urea in June. Apply the whole of FYM and the phosphatic fertilizer in December and N and K in February. It is advisable to use CAN @ 1.00 kg instead of urea, as the use of urea induces soft nose disorder in mango fruits. It is a case of ammonium induced calcium deficiency leading to this disorder.
Frequency of irrigation to mango orchards depends upon the type of soil, climatic conditions especially the rainfall and its distribution and the age of the tree. Generally, the young plants with shallow root system require frequent irrigation during the dry period.However, bearing trees with well developed root system usually require irrigation during the fruit development period between April to end June at an interval of 10-12 days depending upon the evapotranspiration. One irrigation should be given at the time of addition of fertilizers in the month of February. No irrigation should be given for a period of 2-3 months during October-December.
The Mango tree has a juvenile period of 3-7 years depending upon the variety.Therefore the vacant space between the trees can be profitably utilized by growing inter crops. The inter crops also reduce weed growth and nutrient losses through leaching and surface runoff, besides, giving good returns. Vegetables like Onion, Tomato,Radish, Beans, Cauliflower, Cabbage, Leafy vegetables and Leguminous crops like Moong, Mash, Gram and Lentil can be grown.Crops like Maize, Sugarcane and Bajra should not be grown.
Papaya, Peach and Plum can be grown as inter plants in Mango orchards till the bearing starts. Separate arrangements for manures,fertilizers, irrigation and inter culture should be made for the inter plants and inter crops.
Fruit Drop and its Control
A spray of 10 g sodium salt 2,4-D in 500 liters of water in the last week of April or in the first week of May controls the preharvest fruit drop in Dusehri and Langra cultivars. 2,4-D should be dissolved in a small quantity of alcohol or spirit and then the required volume of water be added. It must be ensured that the spray pump is washed thoroughly with washing soda before and after the spray. Do not repeat the spray of the 2,4-D solution.
Fruit Maturity and Harvesting
Tapka, the natural fall of mature fruit is considered to be the first indication of fruit maturity in Mango. It is usually 15-16 weeks after fruit set. In case of colored varieties change in the skin color is also indicative of the fruit maturity. The maturity of Mango fruit is also indicated when specific gravity is around 1.0.The harvesting should be done individually with the help of a ladder or a bamboo attached sharp knife and a net for collecting the harvested fruits. In no case the fruit should be allowed to drop on the ground as it damages the post-harvest life and cause rotting of the fruit. Fully.Fully mature but still hard green fruits should be picked individually with the help of a picker attached at the end of a long bamboo stick. The harvested fruits be sorted and graded for size and maturity before being packed in the boxes.
The harvested fruits must be placed on a poly net upside down so that the milky ooz flows out and does not stick to the fruit. The fruit is then washed in warm water at 45-50'C and dried.
The fruit is graded according to the size ; Grade A : 200-350 g.,Grade B : 351-550g and Grade C:551-800g. and should be waxed with paraffin emulsion or Sta Fresh. The fruit after this treatment is then cold stored at a temperature of 7-9oC with relative humidity of 85-90% in two to three layers in the cardboard boxes of the size of45x25x25 cm of five ply which are used for packing the fruit.fruit. This type of fruit can stay for 35-45 days, however, under ambient conditions the fruit can be stored for 10-12 days when the room temperature is around 30'C.The fruits of ‘Alphonso’ harvested in the last week of June or first week of July can be ripened after 4 days by dipping in 600 pp methephon solution for 4 minutes and packing in wooden boxes lined and covered with newspaper.