How to Plant a Mango Seed and Successfully Grow It in a Pot

1. Seed Preparation:

  • Extracting the Seed: Begin with a ripe mango. After consuming the fruit, take out the large pit. Clean off any pulp and let it dry for a day or two.
  • Opening the Husk: With care, use a knife to open the husk. Inside, you will find the actual seed. Ensure the seed looks healthy and is free from damage or mold.

2. Germination:

  • Paper Towel Method:
  • Moisten a paper towel, squeezing out any excess water.
  • Encase the mango seed in the damp towel.
  • Place the wrapped seed in a plastic bag or container, keeping it in a warm place.
  • Regularly check the seed to ensure the paper towel remains damp and to see if sprouting has occurred.

3. Pot Selection and Planting:

  • Choosing the Right Pot: Opt for a large pot, at least 10-12 inches in diameter, with ample drainage holes.
  • Soil Requirement: Use a well-draining potting mix, preferably with a mix of perlite and compost for organic matter.
  • Planting: If you’ve germinated the seed using the paper towel method, once the roots are a couple of inches long, it’s ready to be planted. Plant the seed shallowly, with the hump (ridge) facing up. For those who prefer direct planting in the pot without pre-germination, insert the seed with the ridge facing upwards and cover lightly with soil.

4. Watering, Light, and Fertilizing:

  • Watering: Water consistently, ensuring the top layer of the soil is allowed to dry out between watering. Overwatering can lead to root rot.
  • Light: Mangoes crave sunlight. Position your pot where it can receive at least 6-8 hours of sunlight daily. If you’re in a region with harsh sunlight, afternoon shade might be beneficial.
  • Fertilizing: A few weeks after planting, start using a balanced, water-soluble fertilizer. Follow the manufacturer’s instructions and be careful not to over-fertilize.

5. Transplanting and Pruning:

  • Transplanting: As the tree grows, it might outgrow its pot. Consider upgrading to a larger pot when you see roots coming out of the drainage holes.
  • Pruning: Regularly pruning your mango tree will help maintain its size, especially when growing in a pot. Focus on creating a balanced canopy and removing any dead or unhealthy branches.

Growing a mango tree in a pot brings the joy of tropical gardening to even the smallest of spaces. While you might have to wait a few years before seeing fruit, the journey of nurturing the tree is a reward in itself. With care and patience, you can enjoy the lush beauty of a mango tree and possibly even its sweet fruit, right from your balcony or patio.

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