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Author Topic: what to do with a stunted mango tree  (Read 726 times)

beicadad

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what to do with a stunted mango tree
« on: February 12, 2018, 01:54:40 PM »
I have a ~10 year old HD manila mango tree with stunted growth (only 6-7 ft tall and very straggly). I believe the soil had a lot to do with it - a lot of clay and very hard. Though I amended it prior to planting it with a lot of clay soil amendments (those bags from HD), the soil became very compact and hard again.

So I am thinking of dig it out, amend it with some pumice and plant a new tree.

An alternative may be top-working it and mulching heavily. But I am not sure a stunted tree can recover.

Advice appreciated. Thanks!

silbae0487

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Re: what to do with a stunted mango tree
« Reply #1 on: February 12, 2018, 10:09:44 PM »
I think it possible.
But before plant other plants or transplant it, you must change soil state....dig soil 1m deep widely and mix 40% origin+10% mud+15% organized vermiculite+25% leaf mold + 10% other well-growing parts soil...or if you buy the soil from the market, origin 40%+product 40%+organized vermiculite20%...
Good luck and sorry my poor Eng.

spaugh

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Re: what to do with a stunted mango tree
« Reply #2 on: February 12, 2018, 11:06:13 PM »
I think thats good advice to fix soil before planting a new tree in that spot.  Maybe build yourself a raised bed 12 or 18" up maybe 4x4ft wide and fill will good draining soil. 
Brad Spaugh

Guanabanus

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Re: what to do with a stunted mango tree
« Reply #3 on: February 13, 2018, 08:22:59 AM »
Yes, as Spaugh says.

A raised bed of entirely new soil mix mounded or raise-bedded above the clay, will have no tub effect.  I would include a lot of sand in the mix.  Before adding other soil ingredients, you could chop into the clay, adding sand and gypsum, to encourage the roots to not just stay on top of the clay.
Har

skhan

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Re: what to do with a stunted mango tree
« Reply #4 on: February 13, 2018, 09:32:56 AM »
another thing to consider is the cultural practices (i think this is the terminology used)
watering, fertilizer regimen, spraying etc

Sort of in line with this thought is making sure the tree holds no fruits until its big enough.
It seems like the climate in SoCal will let trees fruit themselves to death.
Khan's Edible Oasis
Yard as of Jan 2018

spaugh

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Re: what to do with a stunted mango tree
« Reply #5 on: February 13, 2018, 10:02:51 AM »
another thing to consider is the cultural practices (i think this is the terminology used)
watering, fertilizer regimen, spraying etc

Sort of in line with this thought is making sure the tree holds no fruits until its big enough.
It seems like the climate in SoCal will let trees fruit themselves to death.

This is true but the manilla trees they sell everywhere are not grafted.


Regarding the soil fix, if you want some decomposed granite soil for your project you can come over and fill a truck up with it.  It will make your tree happy.  I have plenty of it.



Brad Spaugh

zands

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Re: what to do with a stunted mango tree
« Reply #6 on: February 13, 2018, 11:39:56 AM »
Sometimes you just get a dud. Years ago i planted two Glenn mango trees. one thrived the other didn't. Just saying...and it might not be your case. Plus I did not exert myself trying to rescue it.

simon_grow

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Re: what to do with a stunted mango tree
« Reply #7 on: February 13, 2018, 01:35:47 PM »
The tree is already there so you may as well top work it when it warms up.

For areas with bad soil in San Diego, I recommend you plant a variety of mango seeds directly into the ground in hopes that one seedling will perform better than another. Plant a bunch of mono and polyembryonic seeds and whichever one grows the best, use it as rootstock.

I have horrible clay and rock soil at my house and I plant most my trees on small mounds.
Here’s a picture of some random Mango seedlings about 1-1.5 years old that have adapted to my bad soil. You can see 2-3 seedlings in this pic but they’re planted super close so they look like one tree. Other seedlings barely grew or were badly affected by fungus or the cold. Plant lots of varieties and some will do better than others.


Simon

beicadad

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Re: what to do with a stunted mango tree
« Reply #8 on: February 13, 2018, 02:56:25 PM »
Thank you all for the good advice. Really appreciated.

Simon your seedling looks really good.

I am leaning toward removing the tree and plant a new one (likely raised bed/pot approach and maybe also amend the soil below it too). if I plant seeds they will still be stuck with bad soil even if their roots would adapt better. And if i am removing the tree anyway why not just remove it now.

On the other side, I feel bad about removing a tree that's been there for so long, so if topworking a stunted tree can juvenile it to have faster growth (i can amend the soid gradually, such as a quarter at a time without impacting the roots too much), it would be a good choice. I doubt it would work and I can't find a lot of references.

Frog Valley Farm

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Re: what to do with a stunted mango tree
« Reply #9 on: February 13, 2018, 04:12:12 PM »
I would build and condition the soil around the tree with an inch untreated wood chips cover with two to three inches of  bagged compost and cover with a thick layer of alfalfa hay wet down and water when the hay dries and repeat every two or three months. 

Dylan SB

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Re: what to do with a stunted mango tree
« Reply #10 on: February 13, 2018, 08:15:36 PM »
Gypsum is rather inexpensive.  If you have clay soil and an accumulation of sodium in the soil gypsum can help you improve soil structure.  You should be able to find 50 pound bags for less than $15. 


pineislander

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Re: what to do with a stunted mango tree
« Reply #11 on: February 13, 2018, 08:19:50 PM »
I am leaning toward removing the tree and plant a new one (likely raised bed/pot approach and maybe also amend the soil below it too).

If you remove it be sure to check root area for problems, lots of trees get potbound circling roots, etc.

beicadad

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Re: what to do with a stunted mango tree
« Reply #12 on: February 13, 2018, 09:08:59 PM »
another thing to consider is the cultural practices (i think this is the terminology used)
watering, fertilizer regimen, spraying etc

Sort of in line with this thought is making sure the tree holds no fruits until its big enough.
It seems like the climate in SoCal will let trees fruit themselves to death.

This is true but the manilla trees they sell everywhere are not grafted.


Regarding the soil fix, if you want some decomposed granite soil for your project you can come over and fill a truck up with it.  It will make your tree happy.  I have plenty of it.

Thanks Brad. Will pumice achieve similar purpose? I have some pumice & compost that I can add to the soil.

Guanabanus

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Re: what to do with a stunted mango tree
« Reply #13 on: February 13, 2018, 09:31:26 PM »
No.  Also beneficial, but totally different.
Har

spaugh

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Re: what to do with a stunted mango tree
« Reply #14 on: February 13, 2018, 11:24:13 PM »
another thing to consider is the cultural practices (i think this is the terminology used)
watering, fertilizer regimen, spraying etc

Sort of in line with this thought is making sure the tree holds no fruits until its big enough.
It seems like the climate in SoCal will let trees fruit themselves to death.

This is true but the manilla trees they sell everywhere are not grafted.


Regarding the soil fix, if you want some decomposed granite soil for your project you can come over and fill a truck up with it.  It will make your tree happy.  I have plenty of it.

Thanks Brad. Will pumice achieve similar purpose? I have some pumice & compost that I can add to the soil.

Pumice will help with drainage but its quite expensive for the amount you will need for an in ground tree.  Compost is good in moderation.  You don't want to add too much as it holds a lot of water and doesn't breath well without something like pumice, perlite, or sand added to it. 

The decomposed granite is really nice since it drains perfectly and holds just the right amount of moisture.  It however has very little organic matter.  So mixed with a bit of compost and topped with mulch seems to make plants happy.  It would work well for a raised bed where you need to add a lot of *something* to fill it up.

Is your tree in full sun?  That is really important too.

 
Brad Spaugh

beicadad

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Re: what to do with a stunted mango tree
« Reply #15 on: February 14, 2018, 12:48:30 AM »
Yes it's in full sun. I have a small yard so I can only have a small raised bed which won't need a lot of pumice. Really like your yard and greenhouse setup. Your plants are thriving and amazing.

spaugh

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Re: what to do with a stunted mango tree
« Reply #16 on: February 14, 2018, 10:28:28 AM »
Yes it's in full sun. I have a small yard so I can only have a small raised bed which won't need a lot of pumice. Really like your yard and greenhouse setup. Your plants are thriving and amazing.

Well thanks!

You should ask Simon what he uses in his boxes, he has several boxes dedicated to mango trees.  And he has a real greenthumb, his mango trees look amazing.
Brad Spaugh

 

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