Mango trees originated in Asia but today you can find them in many warm places in the US. According to the University of Hawaii, mango trees can produce fruit for 40 years and even more if cared for properly. The fruit of this tree can vary in color from red, orange, green to yellow. The ripe inner fruit is bright yellow and juicy. Mangoes have a healthy harvest season, most cultivars produce fruit between June and September. Get your calendars out! Once flowers appear, you’ll have fruit three to four months later.
it’s important to mention that this tropical fruit is weighty and needs to be picked before it ripens. If left to ripen on the tree, the fruit could fall to the ground and bruise. It is advised that after harvesting, mangoes should be stored at room temperature. Once they ripen, you can refrigerate them at a temperature of 50 F. Harvesting mangoes isn’t difficult but timing is important.
Harvesting the Perfect Fruit
Place a check mark on the calendar when you first spot flowers on the tree. From flower to fruit, it takes approximately 100 days. Resist the urge to harvest this tropical delicacy early.
Squeeze the fruit before you pluck it from the tree.A ripe mango will feel slightly flexible but firm. This fruit’s density is comparable to a peach or an avocado. If you can squeeze the fruit, it is ready for harvesting.
Protect your hands from pests, sap and sharp twigs by wearing gloves. Grasp the mango with one hand to expose the twig that connects it to the tree. With a sharp knife, cut the mango off the tree with the other hand. The safest method is to make the cutting motion toward the tree, not toward yourself.
Remember that mango sap can irritate your skin and lead to serious allergic reactions. If you do accidentally come in contact with mango sap, wash it away immediately with soap and water.
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