Mango flower and fruit drop causes, control methods: Well, guys if you know how to control mango flower and fruit drop, you can get excellent profits in mango farming. Mango is a fruit plant belonging to the Anacardiaceae family and genus Mangifera. A mango tree can reach a height between 10 to 40 m. Causes of premature and untimely fall of fruits from the tree are discussed and also follow some tips to prevent mango fruit dropping. Mango flowers will set much more fruit than the tree can hold and have major fruit drop. Now, let us get into the details of mango flower and fruit drop.
A step by step guide to mango flower and fruit drop causes
Mango trees begin fruit production in 3 years and form fruit quickly. Also, proper mango tree care is taken to ensure that the tree keeps bearing healthy flowers and fruits for the coming years. The mango is called the ‘kings of fruits’ and it’s a summertime staple in the household around the world. Plants prefer tropical and subtropical climates with humid, hot summers and cool, dry, frost-free winters. Select an open, sunny position, sheltered from strong winds. Trees will grow in almost any soil whether sandy; loam or clay, but they need good depth and drainage.
Flowers are borne from the inflorescence, consisting of self-pollinating hermaphrodite and male or monoecious flowers that bloom simultaneously. Of these hundreds, a few flowers develop into fruits. Mango flowers are also pollinated by several insects and birds, such as bees, hummingbirds, fruit bats, and butterflies.
The Mango flowers bloom in December or January and remain until early April. Trees that have produced excessively during the previous season should be provided extra care. Trees must be pruned and provided feed, to ensure that the trees bear flowers and fruits for the coming season. Sometimes, the panicles could need to be pruned as well, to prevent the fruits from appearing sooner than required. The mango flowers can be clipped until the weather stabilizes and conducive for the fruits to form.
Diseases affect in Mango fruit drop
Fungal diseases in mango trees are powdery mildew and anthracnose can cause premature dropping of mango fruit. Powdery mildew covers, mango fruit, foliage, and twigs with a white, powdery substance, while anthracnose shows up as dark spots on plant leaves or sunken lesions. Both will lead to stunted growth, dieback of branches and premature mango fruit dropping. Fallen plant matter twigs, leaves, flowers and fruits are a food source for fungi and pests, and will increase the chance of future problems. Regularly prune dead, dying branches and leaves from the tree to help curb any potential problems before they infect the entire tree. In extreme infestations, you could need to use a fungicide to save the tree.
Insect pests – Insect pest infestation is one of the main important factors contributing to mango fruit drop. Among these, midges, caterpillars, hoppers, thrips, fruit fly, and seed weevil are main contributors. The mango midge causes drop up to 70% and mango hopper is a major pest, causing 25-60% fruit loss. The mechanism by which insect damage induce mango fruit abscission is probably as varied as the damage they incur. However, that generation of ethylene is involved either through wound affects or directly in infected tissues.
Dropping is natural process
The falling of mangoes from stalks is common and not due to any insects or other problems. A mango tree cannot support all the heavy fruit set; only a certain percentage of it can mature to full-size fruit. The dropping of some mango fruits is a normal thinning process of the tree to properly utilize the obtainable nutrients. The immature fruits are all competing for the obtainable food and water. The strongest fruits will survive.
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Many factors may be responsible for the tree to shed its fruits. The main factors are weather changes, inadequate soil moisture, lack of pollination and ovule abortion. And the other factors are embryo degeneration, pests, insects, diseases, lack of fertilizer, and low photosynthetic level can cause the young mango fruits to fall off.
Some factors affect falling mango fruits
Getting the right amount of water is a very important factor for the growth of mango trees. Too much water can cause fruit dropping prematurely and mature mango trees do not require frequent watering. For a young tree, water about two times a week in the first year and thereafter after 4 to 5 days.
If the tree is not getting the right amount of water, it can begin dropping fruit prematurely and the tree could be in danger. If you have recently planted the tree, water it every other day for the first week. For the first few months after planting, water the tree about 2 times a week and whenever there are long periods that means 5 or more days without much rain. Too much water will also lead to mango fruit dropping. When rain is abundant, then stop watering. After the mango tree has matured, it can survive drought-like conditions and will not require frequent watering.
Mango withstands moderate drought conditions for more than 8 months. Water stress during the first 4 to 6 weeks of fruit set can affect fruit retention and yield. The deficiency of water during bloom adversely affects fruit retention as a result of water stress abscisic acid is accumulated and ethylene biosynthesis resulted in fruit drop in mango.
Mango trees produce well in warm tropical climates. Though, a mature tree can withstand low temperatures. Cover the tree to protect it from frost and do not prune dead branches if the frost continues. The tree fruit may fall if there was cold weather during bloom and fruit set. Mango trees do best in warm climates such as those found in subtropical locations and tropical locations. However, an established mango tree generally can survive temperatures at about 25°F for a few hours. Young mango trees cannot tolerate temperature range below 30°F and these temperatures will kill it. If the temperature range begins to fall to 40°F or lower, small fruit and flowers may drop off the branches after a few hours. Protect the tree from frost during its first 2 years by providing an overhead cover when there is any threat of frost. And another option is to help protect the trunk by wrapping it with straw or foam tree wraps. Do not prune tree dead branches or twigs until the danger of frost has passed.
Another important reason for the premature dropping of mangoes from a tree is improper or over-fertilization. Use a complete fertilizer developed for fruits, with correct ratios of nitrogen (N), phosphorous (P) and potassium (K). Fertilize the tree with a fertilizer that has a higher P and K ratio. Too much nitrogen will damage flowers and you can also give an organic fertilizer to feed the tree. Regularly add organic compost to the mango plant.
Fruit drop in the Mango tree
Fruit drop is a serious problem in a mango tree and causes great loss to the growers. A mango tree producing several thousand panicles yields only a few hundred fruits. Most of the mango flowers falling after full bloom or at a later stage of development. Only 0.1 to 0.25% perfect flowers or even less develop in to mature mango fruit. The fruits drop at all stages of maturity. The maximum fruit drop takes place in the last week of April or the first week of May mainly depends upon favorable conditions. The fruit drop can be mainly divided into 3 distinct phases they are pinhead drop, post setting drop and May drop.
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The fruit and flower drop in mango is due to the formation of an abscission layer at the point of attachment of the fruit. Many factors have been considered responsible for the formation of the abscission layer. The causes can be divided mainly into two;
- Unfavorable climatic conditions.
- High incidence of serious diseases such as powdery mildew and anthracnose and pests like hoppers and mealy bugs.
- Poor soil
- Lack of pollination
- Low stigmatic receptivity
- Defective perfect flowers
- Poor pollen transference
- Occurrence and extent of self-incompatibility.
- Abortion of embryo
- Degeneration of ovules.
- Competition between developing fruit lets.
- Drought or lack of irrigation.
The mango fruits fall off the tree due to some problems. They are;
Some fungal diseases such as anthracnose, Gummosis, and powdery mildew on the mango tree can cause premature fruit dropping. The anthracnose disease attacks all parts of the tree making black spots on leaves, flowers, and even fruits but does the most damage to the flower panicles, so it is the dangerous disease resulting in less or no fruiting. Due to anthracnose, the infected fruits drop early from the tree and fruit that initially appears unaffected quickly decays upon ripening and the tree starts losing leaves.
Due to powdery mildew fruit, foliage and stems are covered with a white powdery substance, whereas anthracnose causes dark spots on plant leaves. As the fallen diseased leaves and fruits on the ground are a potential source of infection, never allow them to remain on the ground for too long. Prune dead branches and leaves from the tree regularly to avoid any disease to the mango tree. Dispose of all infected parts of the tree in the rubbish or burn them. Keep the area around the mango plant as weed-free as possible. And use a fungicide if the fungal problem persists. If the mango tree is already affected by anthracnose, and powdery mildew infection, it is too late to spray for these now. To avoid fungal disease problems in the future, spray trees when they begin to form flower spikes. For anthracnose, spray a copper fungicide and also use a sulfur fungicide for powdery mildew. Anthracnose can be controlled by an organic spray of garlic, ginger or turmeric. Grind and add to water with liquid dishwashing soap.
Methods to cope with mango flowers often fall out
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Meet nut requirements on the plant
Nutrient elements in plants are required for plant fertility, especially if the plants are entering the flowering period. For that required fertilizer that can add nutrients to soil and mango plants. This you can give NPK fertilizer when the tree is flowering.
Diligent watering mango plants
When the plants are in flowering, the water requirement is very much, so naturally if in the flowering period often occurs due to soil water permeability is not there. To overcome the mango flower often fall out, diligent watering in the morning and afternoon to the tree.
Planting mango is not just one staple
You need to know that mango fruit is one of the plants that have cross-pollination, so if in the flowering period there are no other mango trees, and then pollination can only be done alone but only 20%. Because of the rest of the cross-pollination between mango trees with each other.
Prevent mango fruit from dropping
Spray of hormones
The fruit drop in the mango tree can be controlled by applying hormones. A spray of hormones on blooms ensures fruit setting. Naphthalene Acetic Acid (NAA) and Gibberellic acid (GA3) are effective for improving fruit retention.
The spray of GA3 (25 ppm) and Naphthalene Acetic Acid (25 ppm) resulted in increasing fruit set, fruit retention, fruit weight and yield. The initial fruit set was substantially increased when sprays of 200 mg/l indole acetic acid (IAA) applied to develop panicles. Polyamines spray Spermine (SPM) (0.01mM) onto the mango panicles at full bloom stage resulted in reduced heavy fruitlet abscission and improved mango fruit yield.
Measures to prevent mango fruit drop
- Spraying of 2, 4-D at 10 ppm or Naphthalene Acetic Acid at 50 ppm at pea stage and marble stage helps in preventing fruit drop.
- Providing pollenizers for self-incompatible types.
- Maintaining sufficient soil moisture prevents fruit drop and helps in increasing the size of the fruit.
- Provision of wind beaks all around the orchards, which prevents drop due to high-velocity winds at the time of fruit growth.
Conclusion of mango flower and fruit drop
If you control the flower drop by any of the method mentioned above, you get best yield of mango. You might be interested in Pumpkin Seed Germination, Time, Temparature.