Thursday, February 18, 2010

How To Graft a Mango Stem

When I first started writing about my mango adventures, I read that mangoes are generally propagated via grafting.  Why?  There are a couple of advantages of grafted plants over plants grown from seeds:  
  • Grafted plants are easier to manage because they're shorter (dwarf mango trees).  They also have better anchorage (lower center of gravity).
  • Mangoes are high value fruits.  Therefore it's important that the fruit quality is consistent (preference for the Carabao Mangoes).  Grafting a sapling with the stalk from the preferred variety makes the tree bear the fruit of the latter.  (Ex.  Bark of Variety A with Stalk of Variety B = Fruit of Variety B)
  • Here's a cool fact.  Taking from the point above, you can actually grow multiple varieties in one tree!  Imagine having both an Indian and Carabao Mango in the same tree.  Cool.
  • Grafted trees also bear fruit faster than those grown from seeds.  

Since my mango plant is in a wait & see lull, I figured I'd play around with grafting and our mature mango tree.  How did I do it?

First of all, I found a side of the mango trunk that I liked.  Then I used a bolo to slice through the bark. I wanted to make it deeper, but I was afraid that the tree might fall on my head. that's probably an inch deep and angled to about 65 degrees.  If you can cut deeper that's probably better.

Then I sliced off a mango stalk from one of the lower lying stems.  It was probably the only stem I could reach.  Then I removed all the leaves.  Afterward, I scraped off the outer covering with sharp shears.  That's the ends are white. I scraped off as much as I could because my bark opening is pretty narrow. 

I thrust the white end to the inside of the moist bark as deeply as I could.  Then I got a white plastic bag (I didn't have plastic cover) and wrapped it around the bark.  This should prevent the sap from drying out (which is very important).

To make sure the stem has ample support if it does grow, I used several tacks around the stem to make sure the stem is firmly attached. Wait and see...


  1. Anonymous9:13 AM

    OMG! I LOVE mangoes! Love 'em --especially the green ones.

    Paz ;-)

  2. Here's a potential deal. I'll trade a couple of my green mangoes (5 years from now) for a couple of your mango creations (like crepes and stuff). Sounds good?


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