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Guide on managing bearing mango trees

Pruning is the removal of undersirable vegetative parts of the tree, including dead, insect-infested,
diseased and crowded branches (referred to as light pruning). It is done to allow sunlight to penetrate
the crown, reduce incidence of pests and diseases, improve quality of fruits, increase fruit production
and make the trees resistant to lodging.
The best time to prune is during summer after harvest to prepare the tree for the next bearing season.
At the same time, pruning in summer favors faster healing of wounded plant parts.
An integral part of pruning is training the canopy to a manageable size, shape and height. If possible,
pruning on the sides should be avoided. Drastic pruning (topworking), on the other hand, can be used
only to change the variety or rehabilitate old, non-productive trees.

Irrigate the trees weekly during flower initiation and fruit development stages up to one month before
harvest. Adequate water supply will enhance fast development, minimize fruit drop and increase fruit
size. The volume of water ranges from 60-100 liters per tree, depending on the size of the tree and
available soil moisture.

As much as possible, soil/tissue analysis should be done to determine the nutrient requirement of
mango trees. In the absence of such, the following rates are suggested:

5-6 years old: 500 gm-1 kg 14-14-14 (triple 14) or 3-4 kg manure + 500 gm-1 kg triple 14
7-8 years old: 2 kg triple 14 or 4-5 kg manure + 2 kg triple 14
9-10 years old: 3 kg triple 14 or 5-6 kg manure + 3 kg triple 14
11-15 years old: 5 kg triple 14 + 10 kg manure
16-20 years old: 6-7 kg triple 14 + 12 kg manure
Above 20 years old: 10 kg triple 14 + 15-20 kg manure
Apply fertilizer on the soil once or two times (split) at the onset and before the end of rainy season.
Fertilizer can also be applied during the dry season if there is enough irrigation.
Place fertilizer in canal dug around the tree with 1-2 meters radius from the trunk and 15-30 cm deep or
in 6-8 holes around the tree. For big trees, follow the canopy drip line.
At flowering, spraying of foliar fertilizer is also recommended as suppllement.

Flower Induction
Potassium nitrate (KNO3) is the generic name of the chemical flower inducer used in mango. This
contains 13% nitrogen and 46% potash. When sprayed on mango, it supplies the potassium requirement
of the tree and helps induce flowering.
Before inducing mango trees to bear flower, the following should be considered:
Varied flowering and fruiting habits of different varieties of mango.
Chemical flower inducers should not be used when the tree is too small or too young, when the leaves
and buds are young, when the tree is sickly, during rainy days and after harvest or when the tree has
fruits or at the flushing stage.
High dosage (2.0-3.0%) should be used when the weather is cold/cloudy, when trees are just starting to
mature or having vigorous buds and leaves.
Low dosage (1.0-1.5%) of inducers is used during sunny or hot weather, when trees are big, old or fully
mature and when trees are healthy with dormant buds.
Induce flowering only once a year.
Age of shoots should be 7-8 months (from flowering to harvest).
Trees that had borne fruits last season but have not flushed should not be induced to flower.
Spray when the tree and leaves are dry and with no expected rain within the next 6 hours.
Spray KNO3, by thoroughly wetting the leaves but not dripping. Spray early in the morning (from sunrise
to 9:00 AM) or late in the afternoon (from 4-5 PM) to prevent leaf burning due to direct sunlight.

Management at Flowering Stage

Supplement solid fertilizer with liquid fertilizer (foliar) at 14-18 and 22-25 days after flow induction
Control of important insect pests and diseases should be done. Spray insecticide/fungicide only when
Encourage pollinators (flies and bees) by withholding pesticides at full bloom (28-32 DAFI). A 10% sugar
solution is recommended to attract pollinators.
Irrigate the trees weekly to enhance vigorous development of flowers.

Management at Fruit-Bearing Stage

Foliar fertilizer is applied at fruit set (35-40 DAFI) and fruit development (50-55 DAFI).
Pest control against major insects and diseases is necessary. Bag (paper) the fruits at 55-60 DAFI at
which they are about the size of chicken egg. This practice minimizes incidence of fruitfly and other
insects, minimizes fungal and other disease infection, reduces mechanical damage and results in cleaner
fruit skin. Generally, this will minimize the use of pesticides.
Irrigation is applied weekly during fruit development and stoppped one month before harvest.

Pests and Diseases

Flowering stage
Insect pests - leafhoppers, tip borers, scale insects/mealy bugs, thrips, flower beetles
Diseases - anthracnose, die back

Fruit-bearing stage
Insect pests - mango seeds black borer, fruitflies, cecid flies, helopeltis, scales, mealy bugs, pulp weevil
(in Palawan)
Diseases -anthracnose, diplodia, scab, sooty mold

Integrated Pest Management

Integrated pest management for mango involves the following practices:
Practice of clean culture which includes pruning, weeding, thinning, cultivation and burning/destruction
of infested branches and fruits.
Regular monitoring of pest population.
Using only approved insecticides/fungicides for mango.
Application of pesticide only when necessary using the recommended dosage and proper timing.
Introduction and maintenance of natural enemies and other biological control methods.
Maintaining of right soil pH of 6-7 by applying recommended fertlizers and soil conditioners.
Using pesticides derived from plant extracts.
Combinantion of cultural, chemical and biological control methods to minimize pests.

The following are the indications that mango fruits are ready for harvesting:
At 110 days (for very warm and dry environment), 120 days (warm climate) and 130 days (cool and high
elevation) after flower initiation;
Broadening of shoulders at the stem end and fullness of cheeks;
Pedicel turns dark green to brown and pulp turning yellow;
Presence of powdery deposit or "bloom" on the surface of the skin; and
Sinking of 75% mature fruits when submerged in 1% solution (100 gm salt to 1 liter of water).

Day 1 - Flower Induction

Use higher concentration of KNO3 nitrate (2-3%) on young trees and even on old
trees during cold months. During dry season, use lower dosage (1-2%). For 1%
solution, 1 kg of KNO3 is needed to 100 liters of water. Stir the KNO3 thoroughly.

Spray, the whole canopy including the top portion of the tree. All terminal buds
should be thoroughly sprayed or wet with the KNO3 solution in order to induce
flowering. Unsprayed bud will not flower or flush.

Note: If you want to have 2-3 sets of fruiting in one tree, spray only the portion of the
tree where you want to have fruits. You can schedule the other parts after a few weeks
so you will have continuous supply of fruits.

Day 7 - 25 - Flower Emergence to full bloom

Pest and disease control is very important on this stage, if left uncontrolled will wipe
out all the flower and fruits.

Under humid environment, anthracnose disease is prevalent; pests on the other

hand, are a lesser problem. To control anthracnose, use systemic fungicide and to
control mango hopper and tip/twig borer, use insecticide.

During dry season, diseases are lesser problems thus ordinary fungicide can be
used. Pests, on the other hand, will be the major problem so learn to check the
presence of insects and use appropriate insecticide.

Use also foliar fertilizer and growth enhancer, every 7-10 days interval.

Day 25 - 35 - Full Bloom

This is the time pollination takes place through the help of bees. During this stage,
do not spray insecticides or fungicides so that the bees will not be killed.

Day 36 - 50 - Fruit Setting

Insects like mango hoppers, tip/twig borers and other harmful insects should be
controlled by spraying with appropriate insecticide at 7-10 days interval.

Anthracnose and scabs attack the fruits which need to be sprayed with fungicide at
7-10 days interval.

Day 51 - 110 Fruit Development - Maturity Stage

Learn the presence of diseases such as scab, sooty mold and insects like twig borer,
fruit fly, mango pulp weevil, capsid bug and mango seed borer - Spray with appropriate
chemicals when needed. Stop spraying 30 days before ripening to avoid toxic residues
on the fruits.

Wrap the fruits when they reach chicken egg size to make them blemish-free. Use
paper that can endure the rain.
Growing Organic Mangoes in the Philippines
The crucial stage of mango production is the attack of insect pests and diseases at
flowering and fruit development stages. Insecticides and fungicides are commonly used, but
to obtain good results, the recommended usage and dosage must be followed and control
must be directed during the vulnerable stage of insect and disease development (not during
the height of destructive infestation and infection). Prevention is better than cure. It is also
less expensive and hence, more profitable.
Continues raining during flowering and early fruit development is the most critical condition
as Anthracnose fungus disease is prevalent. It will rot the flowers and young fruits and they
turn dark and fall off. Every time the rain stops or light drizzle, spray immediately HOC
herbal fungicide to wash off the fungus from the flowers and fruit panicles. Do not postpone
or delay as the fungus can do damage within a few hours. Shaking the branches to remove
water droplets from flowers and young fruits will help for few small trees.


(1) Prior to Induction (2 weeks)
(2) Flower Induction (Day 1)
(3) Bud Break (8-12 days)
(4) Prior to bloom (21 days)
(5) After flower set (corn size 40 days)
(6) Before bagging (60-70 days)
(7) Start of maturation (90-100 days).


Wrapping the individual fruit with newspaper should be done at about 53 to 60 days after
induction or just after natural thinning or dropping when the mangoes are about the size of a
pullet egg. New observation finds 70–80 DAFI is more practical period to bag, as there will
be less fruit drops after bagging and only quality fruits may be bagged.


1. Bagging can reduce or eliminates the incidence of fruit fly and Capsid bug damage,
sunburn and fungal infections.
2. Reduced incidence of mechanical damage while the fruit still hung on the tree and during
harvesting and handling operations. It protects fruits from wind scars.
3. The paper serves as absorbent of latex flow during harvest.
4. The fruit skin is cleaner and more attractive light green color.
5. Bagging provides more or less an accurate estimate on the number of fruits per tree. This
is important in cases where marketing is done on contract basis, or estimated on the total
volume and weight of harvest.


Spraying foliar fertilizer high in potash with trace mineral elements during fruit development
will make the fruits sweeter. It will make the peel more flexible and will lessen cracking of
fruits during the final stage of maturity, even when humidity rises and rains.

Spraying with herbal organic concentrate or HOC-4n1 will do this. It will also protect the
fruits from insect pests and fungal diseases.
Let us not forget that friendly insects, birds and microorganisms are very helpful in reducing
the population and incidence of insect pests. Providing favorable natural environment in the
orchard for friendly biological organisms will greatly reduce cost of production and good
quality fruits.

Pointers on Applying Flower Inducer to Mango Trees

Simultaneous fruiting is possible nowadays with flower inducer. By spraying it to mango trees,
not just more, but bigger fruits are produced.

Potassium nitrate is the generic name of chemical flower inducer in mango, and the chemical
symbol for this compound is or KNO;. It contains 13% nitrogen and 46% potash, hence it is also
called 13-0-46. KNO supplies the potassium requirement of the tree and in the process, induces

Another flower inducer used, nowadays is calcium nitrate (CaN). It contains 45% calcium and
15% nitrogen. It is affordable, yet the effect is just the same.

Here are some pointers on applying flower inducer to mango trees.

1. Flowering and fruiting vary, depending on the variety.

2. Chemical flower inducers should not be used under the following circumstances:

• when the tree is 10 years old or below

• when the leaves and buds are young
• when the tree is weak and sickly
• during rainy days

3. High dosage of flower inducer should be applied when the tree is healthy and starting to
mature, the leaves and buds are maturing, and the weather is cloudy.
4. Use low dosage of flower inducer (1% – 2% of KNO;) when the tree is already mature,
healthy, and has dormant buds; the leaves and buds are mature; and the weather is sunny.
5. Induce flowering once a year. However, if it did not flush during the fruiting time, spray again
after harvest, but do not expect full bloom.
6. Spraying should be done when the tree and leaves are dry, and with no expected rain within
the next six hours.
7. Use Apsa-80 as sticker.
8. Using the same formulation, spray again after two days to hasten the emergence of flowers.
9. From flowering to harvest, it takes 7 to 8 months to rejuvenate and accumulate nutrients for
the next fruiting season.
10. Trees that have yielded in the previous season but have not flushed can be induced, but do
not expect a full bloom.

In spraying potassium nitrate, prepare a 1% – 3% solution, depending on the condition of the

tree. Or, mix 4 kilos per 200 liters of water. Spray it onto the leaves and branches, totally wetting
but not dripping. Spray early in the morning (from sunrise to 9:00 a.m.) or late in the afternoon
(from 4:00 p.m.-6:00 p.m.) to prevent leaf burning due to sunlight. In applying CaN, one one
hand, mix 5 kilos to 200 liters of water.

After 12 days, when the flowers start to emerge, spray pesticide and fungicide. The flowers
would be fully opened after 20 days. At this time, the flowers are susceptible to pest, so inspect
the plants every day to see if there are damages caused by insects, and spray appropriate

Here is an instruction of a flower inducing agent called Haifa (Potassium Nitrate):

When to spray:
1. Age of three:
KNO3 (Potassium Nitrate) should be applied to physiologically mature mango trees. Those that
have not reached the reproductive phase will not flower despite KNO3 application.
2. Age of shoot/leaves:
Mature leaves are more responsive to KNO3 than younger ones. After flushing, leaves should
grow and develop for about 7-9 months. A practical guide to identify mature leaves in the fields
is the copper green to brown color, brittle texture and crispy appearance.
3. Presence of dormant buds:
They should be visible on the tip of the twigs as plump and convex protrusions. Non-dormant
buds are conclave in appearance.

It has been reported that concentration as high as 16% KNO3 have been used to induce
flowering mango without any phytotoxic effects. In practice, the recommended concentrations
for induction varies from 1-3% KNO3. In the Philippines, the reco0mmended rate varies with
the season:
Wet months (Off-season) July to November: 2 to 2.5 percent KNO3 is recommended (2-2.5 kg
of KNO3 in 100 liters of water).
Dry months (December to MAy): a lower concentration of 1 to 1.5% KNO3 is recommended. (1-
1.5 of KNO3 in 100 liters of water).
Oftentimes, if flowering is poor or does not occur, a second spray using low concentration of
KNO3 should be applied. This procedure can increase flowring in mango.
The uptake of KNO3into the leaves is extremely fast. Consequently, rainfall after spraying has
negligible affect provided leaves are dry during and imediately following spray aplication of Haifa
Pottasium Nitrate.

Any Fertilizer applied to the tree via the soil cannot be utilized by the developing flowers: hence,
foliar spray in needed. When Haifa Potassium nitrate is sprayed on the tree it becomes a fast
and effective source of potassium and nitrogen.
It is recommended to spray twice. Apply 1 to 2% KNO3 solution each application at about 42
and 65 days after induction. The first application at about 42 and 65 days after induction. The
first application is done to encourage fruit setting and minimize fruit drop. While the second
application is to increase fruit size.

Suggestions to have increase in fruits and save in pesticide and insecticide and fungicide:
-after harvest prune the unwanted branches and twigs espeically the dead ones and sprouting
-after harvest apply 1-2 bag dry chicken manure or organic fertilizer each tree plus complete
fertilizer to feed to the tree. (I advice using chicken manure because 1 bag cost 20 pesos each
more cheaper than compost)
-after flower inducing the mature trees, I suggest you bag the mangoes at the fruit set usually
this takes 40 days after flowering inducement. This is better to less the cost on pesticide and
insecticide. (If you're trees are very tall, I suggest you bag the fruits in the lower portion where
can easily bag them for export quality pursposes)
-Remember it is importnat you feed the tree after harvest of fruits as it already lost it nutrients in
the ground that were fed to the fruits for development.
-You will never flower a mature tree if the tree is not well fed. I suggest you apply organic
fertilizer 3 times a year, before rainy season, after rainy season and after harvesting. This will
gurantee a good harvest plus complete fertilize in the ground.
-Do not over flower induce the tree because this is the cost why some mangoes die at a early
age because of flower inducer overdose.

Insect Pests

1. Mango leaf hopper

Damage: Sucking of plant sap causes withering and drying of tender shoots, flowers and very
young fruits. In the process, insect secretes sticky fluids (honeydew) that promotes development
of sooty mold, fungal disease.

Control: Spray recommended chemicals starting from flower/bud formation to fruit setting.
Confidor is effective against hoppers.

2. Mango tip borer

Damage: Shoots wilt and terminal parts die. If infested, panicles break and the flowers shed off.


o Prune dead branches to discourage spread of insect. Burn parts that are affected.
o Since the adults start to destroy the flowers from the bud emergence to elongation, it is
necessary to spray insecticides to protect these stages especially during hit months.
Insecticides used for mango hopper control are also recommended for tip borer.
3. Twig cutters

Damage: This is very destructive during the dry season. When present, the number of flowers
that will be formed is reduced. The most visible indication of the problem is the presence of dead
twigs and leaves in the canopy.

Control:Pruning and burning e dead branches to discourage spread of insect. Protect flushes from
adults by spray application of insecticide.

4. Pulp weevil

Damage: This is a unique pest since the larvae of the insect feed inside the fruit and destroy the
pulp, yet the peel has no visible damage even up to harvest. The insect is present only in some
parts of Palawan.


a. Pruning of crowded mango trees allowing light to penetrate in the canopy is unfavorable
to the weevil. Dead or overcrowding branches should be removed.
b. Keep each tree free from weeds, fallen leaves, fruit droppings and other debris.
Cultivation of soil is advantageous since this exposes and kills the weevil hidden in the
soil after harvest. Burn infested fruits to eliminate sources of infestation during the next
fruiting season.
c. For chemical control, Cypermethrin at 50 ml/100 li water provides good protection
against the weevil. Fenvalerate and Carbaryl are also effective against the pest. The
insecticide should be applied at 14 days interval from fruit set to full development of the

Note: Insecticides are not effective once the pest is inside the fruit.

5. Mango fruit fly

Damage: Adults lay eggs on mature fruits and larvae feed on the flesh. Affected fruits drop to the
grown and are easily contaminated by microorganisms.

Control: Bagging, collection and proper disposal of fallen fruits and harvest at the proper stage
of maturity. If chemicals have to be used, spray at 90 or 110 days after induction.

6. Mealy bugs

Damage: Attack newly-flushed leaves, flowers and fruits and suck vital plant saps. Affected parts
turn yellow, dry up and eventually fall.

Control:Removal of infested fruits, flowers and leaves. Spray insecticides to kill ants associated
with mealy bug.

7. Capsid bug

Damage: Attacks young leaves, twigs and fruits. Saliva of the insect is very toxic and the site of
the puncture is marked by sunken blister. The lesions turn brown after 24 hoursbecoming black
and scabby in 2-3 days. Infected young fruits fall prematurely. Locally, the damage is called
‘kurikong’ or ‘armalite’ or ‘buti’.

Control:Prune trees before induction, underbrushing areas around the tree, spray insecticide late
in the afternoon and remove alternate hosts like cashew, guava and cacao.

8. Mango cecid fly

Damage:Adults, which are mosquito-like in appearance, lay eggs on new flushes. The larvae
mine the leaves producing galls or swelling of tissues. Heavy infestation results to wrinkling of
the leaves; the leaves remain yellow in color. Close examination of the leaves shows dark green,
circular galls randomly distributed on the leaf blade.


. Prune or cut infested leaves and burn.

a. Practice orchard sanitation. Underbrush weedy areas since adults stay in these areas.
b. Spray either Sevin, Decis, Karate or Stingray (3-4 tbsp per 16 liters water) to minimize
9. Scale insect

Damage: In nurseries, leaves of grafted mangoes are readily infested with scale insects, causing
them to dry and fall. On bearing trees, high populations of the insect cause blackening of canopy
due to the growth of the fungus ‘sooty mold’. Affected leaves become covered with thin, black
papery film which produces unsightly appearance. In addition, affected branches are deformed
producing gall like protruberances.


. Young scale insects are carried and distributed by red ants to different parts of the tree.
To prevent infestation, destroy ants by spraying Malathion at 1 ½ tbsp per 16 liters water,
Decis at 1-5 tbsp per 16 liters water or Karate at ¾ - 1 ½ tbsp per 16 liters water.
a. Prune and burn heavily infested plant parts like branches and leaves. This should be
followed by spray application of insecticides recommended for this pest and application
of high dose of nitrogen.

Important Diseases

1. Anthracnose

Damage: This is the most prevalent and destructive disease of mango both in the field and after
harvest. Symptoms are exhibited not only on the fruits bust also on flowers and leaves.

Prevention and Control:

a. Field sanitation
b. Prune infected branches, burn them and bury the trash
c. Schedule flower induction after the rainy season or during the dry months
d. Include insecticide and fungicide when spraying flower inducer
e. Wrap the fruits 50-60 days after flowering to protect them from pests and diseases.
f. After harvest, practice hot water treatment
2. Stem end rot

Damage:This is another post-harvest disease of mango and appears during storage and transit.
The disease occurs only in ripened fruits.

Control Measures:

a. During harvest, leave one centimeter pedicel attached to the fruit to avoid too much latex
staining. The casual organism germinates and grows in the presence of latex.
b. Pack mangoes in boxes of two layers to avoid injury due to compaction
c. Do not use organic materials during packing
3. Scab

Damage: The disease occurs in nurseries and during moist weather. Damage occurs while fruit is
still green

Control Measures:The methods of control are similar to that of anthracnose. However, scab is
effectively controlled using copper fungicide.

4. Gummosis

Damage: This fungal disease causes stem bleeding, crown and root rot. Infection may start
during the seedling stage and may appear during both dry and wet season.

Control Measures:

a. Plant in well-drained soil.

b. Disinfect nursery sites before planting with methyl bromide, Chloropictin or other
c. Avoid too close planting to allow aeration and ventilation.
d. Remove dirt, weeds or trash
e. Avoid dumpy soils for long duration at the base of the trees.
f. Cultivation to aerate the soil is necessary to reduce fungal infection
g. Prune crowded branches
h. Foliar spray of ethyl phosphate metaxyl ot prosethal at 2g per liter water every 80 days
i. Drench infected parts, exposed damage and cover with slurry of fungicide

5. Sooty mold

Damage:The causal organism (fungus) develops in the presence of honeydew excreted by insects
like hoppers, scales and mealy bugs. As such, it stains the fruits and makes them look dirty and

Control Measures:Spray insecticide to kill hopper, scales and mealy bugs. Bag fruits at 60