Mango (Mangifera indica) is a large tree in the sumac family (Anacardiaceae), along with cashew and pistachio. It can reach a height and crown width of a 100’ or more.
Indigenous to India, the earliest known reference to cultivation can be traced to 2000 BC. The fruit comes in many different shapes, sizes and colors depending on the cultivar. The flesh is golden color, juicy, aromatic with a flat pit in the middle. The texture is silky and delicate and varies in fiber content by cultivar.
Mango trees thrive in hot and dry climate and well-drained soil. In areas where rain is prevalent during flowering and fruit set, trees suffer from anthracnose infection caused by fungus Colletotrichum gloeosporioides var minor. This fungus can cause destruction of the flowers and drop of young fruit. Some cultivars are less susceptible to anthracnose than others.
Fairchild – This cultivar was introduced in Hawaii from Panama in 1920s. It bears small fruits in June and July that have yellow skin when ripe. The flesh is juicy and low in fiber. Fairchild is considered relatively anthracnose tolerant and can produce in wetter climates.
Rapoza – Rapoza is a Hawaii selection that is an abundant producer in July and August. It produces large, attractive, excellent quality fruits with a thin seed and fibreless texture. The ripe fruit has a yellow skin with red and purple hues. The golden flesh is juicy and aromatic with resinous notes.
Kiett– A Florida cultivar that is an abundant bearer, considered the best export cultivar of the Americas. Trees are anthracnose resistant and fruit 1-2 months after mid- season cultivars, from August to October. The fruit is large, low in fiber with a thin seed. The skin is green with yellow, red and purple hues. The fruit has a long shelf life.
Mapulehu – Mapulehu is a Molokai seedling selection that produces best in dry areas. Trees grow vigorously and bear fruit heavily in July. The fruit is a relatively small size and has a distinctive pointed end. The flesh is golden, juicy and aromatic when ripe with a complex flavor. The texture is silky with no fiber.
Brook’s late – A Florida selection that bears from August until October. Tree is medium-sized, and the fruits have a thin seed and a yellow-green skin when ripe. The flavor is sweet and mild. This cultivar can be grown successfully on both the windward and leeward areas of the islands.
Kasturi – A unique species of mango from Indonesia (Mangifera casturi). The fruits have smooth skin that begins to take on a purple hue and turns a deep purple to almost black when ripe. The skin is relatively thick, and the flesh is dark orange, aromatic and juicy.
Lalee Jawo – A unique species of mango from Indonesia (Mangifera lalijiwa). It produces medium sized oval green fruit with a fibreless flesh. The flavor is mild and sweet, like that of many SE Asian mangos.
Julie – Julie is a dwarf, slower growing cultivar from the West Indies. The fruit is fibreless, smooth, and delicious and the skin is yellow green with pink hues at maturity. It produces best in dry areas.
Siam – A Thailand cultivar, it bears oblong fruits that have yellow-green skin with reddish hues. Siam is an abundant producer, and it seems to be relatively anthracnose tolerant.
Jahinger– is an Indian cultivar. The fruit has an oval shape, green skin and light-yellow flesh. The texture is smooth and fibreless. The flavor is sweet, with complex citrus notes. The fruit is best consumed when still green on the outside. Once the skin turns orange, it is best to use for juice.
Graham – This cultivar was developed from a seedling of Julie in Trinidad. The trees grow vigorously to 20’ and form a round, dense canopy and are disease resistant. The fruit has a yellow – orange fibreless flesh and rich, aromatic flavor with resinous notes.