Mango (Mangifera indica)


Indian Varieties
There are nearly 1000 mango varieties in India. However, only about 20 varieties are grown commercially. Most of the Indian mango varieties have specific ecogeographical requirements for optimum growth and fruiting. 
Dashehari, Langra, Chausa, Bombay Green and Fazri in north India; Banganapalli, Totapuri, Neelum, Pairi, Suvarnarekha, Mulgoa, Kalapadi and Rumani in south India; Alphonso, Kesar, Mankurad, Fernandin’ and ‘Vanraj’ in western India and ‘Langra’, ‘Fazri; ‘Chausa’, ‘Zardalu’, ‘Himsagar’ and ‘Malda’ in eastern India are grown commercially. Brief characteristics of these varieties are given below :

Commercial Varieties
Characteristics of important commercial mango varieties are as under :


**Varieties suitable for Tamil Nadu
Banganapalli, Bangalora, Neelum, Rumani, Mulgoa, Alphonso, Senthura, Kalepad, Imam Pasand.

Soil and climate



Ideal soil for mango is red loamy. Good drainage is preferable for better establishment. Ideal pH range is from 6.5 to 8.0.

Season of planting
Planting spreads from July to December.

Propagation techniques
Mango can be raised from seed or propagated vegetatively.
Several methods of vegetative propagation have been tried with varying degrees of success. Propagation from seed, though easy and cheap, is unable to perpetuate characters of the parent tree because most commercial varieties in India are cross-pollinated and monoembryonic. Plants also take more time to bear fruit. However, it is essential to raise seedlings to be used as rootstocks.

Stone Grafting :
Stone/epicotyl grafting is a simple, cheap and quick method of mango propagation with a success rate of 75-80%. For this purpose, stones should be sown in June-July on raised beds of size 1x3 m. the beds should e prepared by mixing soil and FYM in the proportion of 2:1. After germination, seedlings with tender stems having coppery leaves are lifted with stones still attached. The roots and stones are dipped in O.1 per cent Carbendazirn solution for 5 minutes after washing the soil. The seedling stems are headed back leaving 6-8 cm long stem. A 4-6 cm longitudinal cut is made running down through the middle of the stem. A wedge shaped cut starting on both sides is made on the lower part of scion stick. The scion stick should be 4-5 months old and 10-15 cm long containing plumpy terminal buds. The scion stick is then inserted in the cleft of the seedlings and tied with polythene strips. The grafts are then planted in polyethylene bags containing potting mixture. The bags are then kept in the shade protecting from heavy rain. The scion stars sprouting 15-20 days after grafting. Care should be taken to remove the sprouts on the rootstocks below the graft union during this period. July is the most suitable month for stone grafting.

Soft-Wood Grafting :
This method of grafting is done when the rootstock is overgrown and thus not suitable for stone grafting. Normally in this method, seedlings of 8-10 months old are selected. The grafting is done on newly emerged flush. The scion wood to be used is defoliated 10 days prior to the grafting and has same thickness as that of terminal shoot. The method of grafting is similar to stone grafting. July and August are the best months for soft-wood grafting.

Inarching :
The method of inarching or approach grafting is quite cumbersome and time consuming, but it is still the leading method for commercial propagation of mango plants. The method consists of uniting the selected shoot (scion) of a desired parent tree (mother plant) with the potted or transplanted seedling (rootstock) by approach grafting. For this purpose, about one-year-old seedlings are most suitable when they attain a height of about 30-45 cm and thickness ranging from 0.75 to 1.5 cm. These seedlings are either grown in pots or under the mother plant from which the grafts are to be prepared. Generally, one-year-old twigs of the scion tree about 60 cm in length and nearly of the same thickness as that of the stock is chosen for grafting. Young and non-bearing trees should not be selected as mother plants.A thin slice of bark and wood, about 5 cm in length, 7.5 mm width and 2 mm deep, is removed by means of a sharp grafting knife from the stem of the stock as well as from the scion branch. The cuts thus made should be absolutely flat, clean, boat shaped, even and smooth. The ends of these cuts should be round and not angular. The cut surfaces of both, i.e., stock and scion are made to coincide facing each other so that there remains no hollow space between the two. Polythene/alkathene strips of about 1.5 cm in width are tied around the union. After about one month of operation, the scion below the graft union and stock above the graft union should be given light "V" shape cuts at weekly interval in such a way that the grafts can finally be detached while giving the fourth cut. In the last stage, the top of the stock above graft union should also be removed completely. Inarching should be done during the active growth period. The end of the monsoon in heavy rainfall areas and early monsoons in the light rainfall areas is the best period for inarching.

Veneer Grafting :
This method of propagation possesses promise for mass scale commercial propagation. The method is simple and can be adopted with success. The rootstocks as mentioned for inarching are suitable for this method also. For conducting this grafting operation, a downward and inward 30-40 mm long cut is made in the smooth area of the stock at a height of about 20 cm. At the base of cut, a small shorter cut is given to intersect the first so as to remove the piece of wood and bark. The scion stick is given a long slanting cut on one side and a small short cut on the other so as to match the cuts of the stock. The scion is inserted in the stock so that the cambium layers come on the longer side. The graft union is then tied with polythene strip as recommended for inarching. After the scion remains green for more than 10 days, the rootstock should be clipped in stages. The scion wood to be used for veneer grafting requires proper preparation. The desired shoots should be defoliated at least one week prior to grafting so that the dormant buds in the axil of leaves become swollen.

Field preparation
Dig pits of 1 m x 1 m x 1 m. Fill in with topsoil mixed with 10 kg of FYM and 100 g Lindane 1.3% dust per pit.

Mango is normally planted at 7 to 10 m either way. However under high density planting, it varies between 5 x 5 m and 6 x 6 m. Amrapalli, a North Indian variety is highly suitable for high density planting.

Grafts are planted in the centre of pit with ball of earth intact followed by watering and staking. The graft union must be 15 cm above the ground level. Land should be prepared by deep ploughing followed by harrowing and levelling with a gentle slope for good drainage. Spacing varies from 10 m x 10 m, in the dry zones where growth is less, to 12 m x 12 m, in heavy rainfall areas and rich soils where abundant vegetative growth occurs. New dwarf hybrids like Amrapali can be planted at closer spacing. Pits are filled with original soil mixed with 20-25 kg well rotten FYM, 2.5 kg single super phosphate and 1 kg muriate of potash. 
One year old healthy, straight growing grafts from reliable sources can be planted at the centre of pits along with the ball of the earth intact during rainy season in such a way that the roots are not expanded and the graft union is above the ground level. Plants should be irrigated immediately after planting. In the initial one or two years, it is advisable to provide some shade to the young plants and also stake to make them grow straight. 

Irrigation management
Irrigation management is crucial to the production of quality fruit. Water inputs must be geared to tree water requirements, soil factors and fruit physiological requirements.


In a new planting, trees must be irrigated throughout the year, including dry periods which occur during the wet season, to enable rapid establishment of the tree. Water inputs should be appropriate to tree size. In general up to 100 L/tree/week should be sufficient for the first two years. The radius of the sprinkler should be appropriate to tree size. Many growers find that a sprinkler with a distributor plate (radius of 1.0 to 1.5 m) is adequate for up to three years. In subsequent years sprinkler radius should be less than 3 m to ensure that the water is delivered to the root zone under the canopy edge which also helps to reduce weed growth around trees. After the second wet season trees are generally only irrigated during the flowering and fruit development period. (July to November). The soil type determines how early continuous irrigation can cease. Trees grown on light sandy and gravelly soils may require continuous irrigation for a longer period to allow them to develop an appropriate size canopy.

In fruiting orchards there are three phases during the annual growing cycle where distinct irrigation management options need to be exercised.

• Phase One
Pre-flowering, from the end of the wet season to the commencement of flowering (April to June/July).
• Phase Two
Flowering and fruiting, from visible panicle bud differentiation to harvest (July to November).
• Phase Three
Post harvest to the end of the wet season (November to April).

Phase one
In mature orchards (established fruiting trees) water is normally withheld from the end of the wet season until flowering. This period of low soil moisture is believed to encourage earlier and more synchronous flowering. Experimental evidence is still inconclusive but it is thought that cool weather (several weeks with night temperatures less than 15°C) is the main flowering trigger. However, irrigation withdrawal is thought to enhance the flowering trigger, particularly in a year where there is an inconsistent run of cool nights.

Phase Two
Irrigation is highly recommended from flowering until late fruit maturity. Some growers prefer to start irrigating after 50% of the tree is in flower and at least 50% of the flowers are open. Other growers will start irrigating from the commencement of visible flower panicle development in an attempt to speed up the flowering and fruit setting process. The present DPIFM recommendation is to start irrigating when at least 60% of the flower buds are visible. The amount of irrigation is dependent on tree size (canopy cover), evaporation rates and evaporation replacement rate. Irrigation frequency is dependent on soil type (water holding capacity) and effective root depth.
The present irrigation input recommendations are based on a replacement rate (crop factor) of 0.70. Irrigation rates (Appendix 1) per tree depend on the size of the tree. Planting density and pattern interacts with tree size. Maximum percentage canopy cover in the orchard should be between 60% and 70%. This can be achieved by a few large trees (e.g. 100 trees/ha 10 x 10 m) or many smaller trees (e.g. 200 trees/ha 10 x 5.0 m).
Many growers choose to water for 24 or 36 hours at the start of the irrigating season. This may not be necessary particularly if using low radius (2.0-3.0 m) sprinklers because tree water requirement is lower during the first month of flower and fruit development. The use of a hand auger to establish watering depth is recommended, particularly during the first few weeks after irrigation commences. The wetted zone should be at least 40% of the under tree canopy area and good soil moisture should occur down to 60-80 cm. Saturated soil beyond 80 cm suggests that trees are being over watered.

Phase Three
Irrigation normally ceases a few weeks prior to harvest and is not recommenced until flowering in the following year. In years where the wet season begins late (late January, early February) the new vegetative flush may be delayed. This may influence the following flowering date with the most likely consequence being a later flowering. In situations where trees are grown on light soils and the build-up rains and wet season are late, trees should be irrigated to promote an early flush of growth. This should occur after pruning and fertiliser operations have taken place.

In simple terms the more sandy and gravelly the soil, the more frequent irrigations should be. Two to three times per week will be appropriate for most sandy sites. Long irrigations on a sandy soil result in water draining beyond the depth of the effective root zone which is a waste of water and leaches away nutrients.
The use of a hand auger to determine irrigation depth can quickly alert you to potential deep watering problems. Moisture monitoring will allow an appropriate irrigation schedule to be established

Some growers encourage the earlier development of 14% fruit dry matter (minimum market standard) by manipulation of irrigation inputs and cut off prior to harvest. This practice should be carried out with caution as low water inputs (less than 60% replacement) and early cut off (four weeks prior to harvest) will reduce fruit size and fruit quality and delay the development of fruit peel colour.
Work carried out by the Crops, Forestry and Horticulture Division to establish water requirements of mangoes, shows that fruit size increases with increasing amounts of water up to 100% evaporation replacement. Dry matter development is delayed with increasing water inputs. The current recommendation of 70% evaporation replacement is a compromise in terms of balancing the requirements for adequate fruit size, fruit quality and time to maturity.

Average mango tree water requirements (Darwin and Katherine areas) in litres per tree per week.

Conopy cover m2/ha

Trees per hectare
































































Source: www.nt.gov.au/dpifm

Short duration crops like legumes, vegetables, groundnut etc. can be raised during pre- bearing age. Inter crops such as vegetables, legumes, short duration and dwarf fruit crops like papaya, guava, peach, plum, etc. depending on the agro-climatic factors of the region can be grown.

Manures and fertilizers

Manures and Fertilizers

1 Year old

Annual increase

6th year onwards

















Manures and fertilizers may be applied in September – October. Fertilizers are applied 45 to 90 cm away from the trunk upto the peripheral leaf drip and incorporated.

Fertiliser Application: 
In general, 170 gm urea, 110 gm single super phosphate and 115 gm muriate of potash per plant per year of the age from first to tenth year and thereafter 1.7 kg, 1.1 kg, and 1.15 kg respectively of these fertilisers per plant per year can be applied in two equal split doses (June-July and October). Foliar spray of 3% urea is recommended before flowering in sandy areas.

Training and Pruning
Rootstock sprouts and low lying branches have to be removed. Remove overlapping, intercrossing, diseased, dried and weak branches in old trees to get good sunlight and aeration. For the internal branches, pruning may be done during August – September, once in three years. Flowering should not be allowed upto three years. Among crowded terminal shoots, weak shoots are trimmed to retain two healthy shoots during August-September annually.

Growth regulators
NAA @ 20 ppm is sprayed at flowering to increase the fruit retention. During February 0.5% Urea (5 g/lit.) or 1% Potassium Nitrate (10g/lit.) may be sprayed to induce flowering, if trees do not flower by that time. Spraying of 2% KNO3 at mustard size will increase the fruit set and retention of fruits.
Application of Paclobutrazol @ 10 g a.i. for non-bearing trees during first fortnight of September will induce flowering and fruitset yield during off years.

Plant Protection


Spraying two rounds of acephate 75 SP@ 1g/lit or phosalone 35 EC @ 1.5 ml/lit or carbaryl 50 WP 2 g/lit or phosphamidon 40SL 2 ml/lit of water will control hopper. First at the time of panicle emergence and the second two weeks after first spray. Wettable sulphur @ 2 g/lit may be sprayed after spraying carbaryl to avoid mite resurgence. Phosphamidon + neem oil 5 ml/lit of water can be mixed with any insecticides for the control of hopper and shoot webber.

Leaf galls and Aphids 
Application of Dimethoate or Methyl demeton @ 2 ml/lit will control the pests.

Flower Webber 
Application of Phosalone 35 EC @ 2 ml/lit will control webber.

Nut Weevil 
Fenthion 100 EC 1ml/lit spray during marble stage and second spray 15 days after the first spray will control nut weevil.

Mealy bug
Spraying of Chlorpyriphos 20 EC 2.5ml/lit or Monocrotophos 36 WSC 1.5ml/lit will give control over the pest. Band the trees with 20 cm wide 400 gauge polythene sheets will prevent the spread of the pest. Similarly, release of Australian ladybird beetle, Cryptolaemus montrouzieri @ 10/tree will be a very effective bio-control measure.

Stem borer
Monocrotophos (36 WSC) 10 ml is soaked in absorbent cotton and placed on the affected stem by removing the bark of 2.5 cm². Then the portion is wrapped with gunny or plastic papers thereby the chemical gets into the system so as to kill the stem borer. The trees should not be treated during their bearing stage. Application of carbofuran 3 G @ 5g per bore hole and plugging with mud after mechanically removing or killing the grub by introducing a needle or wire will also control the pest.

Fruit fly
Spraying of Fenthion 2 ml/lit or malathion 2 ml/lit will control the pest. Ploughing the inter spaces will expose the pupae. Pheromone trap with methyl eugenol 1 ml in 1 litre of water + 1 ml of malathion solution will attract and kill the female insects. Take 10 ml of this mixture per trap and keep them in 25 different places in one hectare between 6 a.m. and 8 a.m. Collect and destroy the fallen fruits.


Powdery mildew
Application of Sulphur dust (350 mesh) in the early morning will protect new flush or spray Wettable sulphur 0.2% or Tridemorph 0.05% will control powdery mildew. 

Anthracnose and stalk end-rot
Pre-harvest spraying of Mancozeb 2g/lit or Carbendazim 1g/lit or Thiophanate methyl 1g/lit or Chlorothalonil 2 g/lit, 3 times at 15 days interval will control anthracnose and stalk end-rot.

Sooty mould
Spraying Phosphamidon 40 SL @ 2 ml/ litre + Maida 5% (1 kg Maida or starch) boiled with 1 lit of water and diluted to 20 litres will control the incidence of sooty mould. Avoid spraying during cloudy weather.

Mango malformation
Use of disease free planting material.

Stem end rot 

Red rust
Bordeaux mixture (1%), or Copper oxychloride 0.25%

Harvest and Yield
Harvest spreads from March to June. Graft plants start bearing at the age of 3 - 4 years (10-20 fruits) to give optimum crop from 10-15th year which continues to increase upto the age of 40 years under good management.

Waiting Period

14 days

Methyl demeton 0.05%

14 days

Fenthion 0.05%

14 days

Quinalphos 0.05%           

12 days

Lindane 300 g a.i./ha

  2 days


Post harvest management

Post harvest treatment
Dip the fruits in 52 ± 1°C hot water immediately after harvest for 5 minutes followed by 8% plant wax (Fruitox or Waxol) to reduce anthracnose disease in mango during storage. Two pre harvest sprays of 0.20% Mancozeb (2.0 g/lit) will also reduce the incidence.

Post harvest handling of mango
Post harvest losses are 25 -30 per cent of total produce due to improper handling and storage practices. Which amounts to over Rs. 250 crore.

Management steps includes

Pre-harvest management

Harvest maturity


Sorting and grading

Pest management

Do not use calcium carbide, a banned chemical, for ripening of fruits.

Alternatively, ripe the fruits with dip treatment of ethrel / ethephon solution (250–750 ppm) in hot water (52±20C) for 5 minutes.

Fruits ripen uniformly with attractive colour.


Fruits could be stored for 6 – 12 days under ambient conditions, according to variety.

Store the fruits at critical low temperature with 85-90 % R.H. (Shelf life of 3 weeks)
– Dashehari 120C
– Langra 150C
– Chausa 100C
– Mallika 120C


Ref: CISH, Lucknow