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How to grow a mango tree by sprouting it from mango seeds purchased at a farmer’s market or health food store.
Mangoes are one of my family’s favorite fruits, so growing a few mango trees in my garden was a DIY project I’ve wanted to tackle for quite some time.
This year we got some really gorgeous mangoes from our local city market in June, the peak season for mangoes in the nape of the forest.
We thought these mangoes would be perfect for growing trees best suited for the climate here in Central Florida.
People living in more northern climates can also sprout and grow mango trees.
To protect the tree from winter frosts and excessive cold, simply repot it in a larger pot in a covered patio or porch area (not outdoors).
Growing a mango tree from seed has turned out to be one of the easiest gardening projects I’ve ever undertaken.
In trying to germinate mango seeds taken from holes, I had 4-4 success.
It takes several years to bear fruit, but in the meantime, the mango tree itself is beautiful and adds a nice addition to the landscape.
If your kids love to eat mangoes, this is a fun project to do together. By watching seeds germinate and taking care of young trees that slowly grow until they are ready to be repotted in the ground outdoors or in large planters, you learn cultivation skills as well as patience and responsibility.
Here are the easy steps with pictures!
Slice open a ripe mango
This short video taken many years ago is my youngest demonstrating how to slice a ripe mango by cutting it in half into “porcupine” halves.
The middle part left after cutting off the ends is where the hole is.
Once you’ve had a delicious mango porcupine, you’re ready to take the next step.
remove excess meat from the pit
After slicing the mango, there is still edible fruit left in the middle part where the seeds are.
Cut as much of this as possible and serve with half of the porcupine.
Then, under running water from the kitchen faucet, wash away any excess meat that is still attached to the pit.
remove the seeds from the hole
The next step is to extract the mango seeds from the holes.
To do this, use a knife to very carefully make small cuts along the thin side of the hole until you can pierce it with your finger.
I personally think using a steak knife is the best way to do this.
The seeds will fit inside the open hole.
soak mango seeds
Once the mango seeds are de-seeded, the next step is to soak them.
Place the seeds in a small glass of filtered water and let sit for an hour or two.
Some places say to soak longer, but I’ve had the seeds germinate after just a short soak with great results.
Plant seeds uneven side up
After soaking the mango seeds, it is planting.
Choose a small pot, ideally two to three times the width of the seed.
Don’t worry if you don’t have a pan that wide. The seeds will germinate anyway.
I have never had mango seeds fail to germinate yet.
Fill the pot with organic potting soil and plant the mango seeds so that the top of the dotted line in the photo is slightly above the soil.
Water lightly every day
After planting, be sure to lightly water the planted mango seeds daily.
Moisture favors the germination process, so if your home is very dry, some sources suggest cutting a plastic bottle in half, covering the seeds, and building a small greenhouse around it.
Place the pot on a table near a window that gives the seeds plenty of indirect sunlight.
I live in humid Florida, so I didn’t do this. Anyway, all the seeds germinated within 1-2 weeks with great results.
replant mango tree saplings
When the mango tree seedlings are about 1 foot tall, transplant them to permanent outdoor locations or large planters.
My first mango tree has grown to this size and I plan to plant it outside soon.
I chose a spot by the water in my backyard where temperatures rarely drop below freezing even on the coldest winter nights. This place is under a large tree, so it can be protected from frost.
The most successful mango trees in my neighborhood are planted this way, so I thought it best to do the same.