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ISHS Acta Horticulturae 455: V International Mango Symposium

PRUNING MANGO TO INCREASE YIELD

Author:   Emil R. Gross
Abstract:
Essentially, pruning should maintain a good balance between growth and fruiting. The mango grower's objective is to harvest the maximum amount of marketable fruit at the lowest cost, and this can be achieved by selective pruning. Selective pruning, by thinning crowded foliage and lightening the center of the tree, will permit air for ventilation, sun for coloring the fruit and ready access for spraying.

Flush or stub? - Branches less than 2" in diameter should be cut flush. However, bigger branches should be cut external to the top of the collar, identified as a bark ridge, at the junction where limb meet trunk and branch meet limb. If a stub is left for formative, vegetative purpose, it should not be shorter than 6 inches.

How to preserve a stump? - If a tree must be reduced to a stump, as in top working, it should be made with a cut of about 5° angle. The surface cut may be left alone without significant damage for some time. It should never be painted with any paint and any material that leaves a film. Such film will provide a nursery for decay-causing fungi. The surface must be permitted to dry, causing the formation of radial cracks. Only at this point the surface is ready to be doused with any wood preservative until saturated. This time-proven method will keep the stump decay free, allowing the tree to callous over the cut surface.

More from less - Tipping, or heading back, is a form of very light pruning, that is, the removal of no more than 8–10 inches from the end of the branches, after harvest. In about 30–40 days, new shoots will develop that will bear fruit the next season. Truly, more for less.

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