First mangoes ....sunburnt??

Discussion in 'Fruit & Vegetable Growing' started by mooncat, Jan 12, 2018.

  1. mooncat

    mooncat Member Premium Member

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    Finally got a good crop of mangoes this year and hubby laid them all out on a table outside. 24 hours later I saw them all looking like they were bruised. Not much information out there but I think they're sunburnt. Am I right? If so are they still OK to eat? Wondered if anyone has any experience of this before I set about peeling, chopping and freezing.... DSC_0699.JPG
     
  2. letsgo

    letsgo Valued Member Premium Member GOLD

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    Never heard of mango being sunburnt. They could have been stung by fruit fly. Are they ripe? Did you let them ripen on the tree? If they are ripe just cut that bit off if it’s yucky inside, the rest will be fine. Ripening on the tree in fruit fly areas are more likely to get stung. Best bet is to bag them if you want them to fully ripen on the tree.

    Home grown mangoes usually have some mark or another one them. Often it’s just the skin but if it’s more I just cut it off. Only shop bought ones that have been sprayed have perfect skin.

    These will taste much nicer than the shops
     
  3. mooncat

    mooncat Member Premium Member

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    I know me neither.... I think it was on an american website somewhere about not leaving them exposed to sunlight once picked. mango1.JPG mango3.JPG mango4.JPG mango2.JPG mango1.JPG mango3.JPG mango4.JPG mango2.JPG They were all picked and looked exactly like normal home grown mangoes - blemishes and black marks from sap etc but then they were laid out and every single one had the brown mark on and all only on the upper surface exposed to the sun. Hubby says he covered them with a net cover ie the ones to keep flies off food on tables. I wonder if it was that. So...just cut one open and this is the result... Stunning soft, ripe flesh with an amazing full flavour and even a hint of pineapple coming through. On the bruise / burn side, flesh is firm, pale and bitter to taste. We do have a few more on the tree so I'm going to pick couple and bring them straight indoors for a few days to see if there's any difference.
     
  4. letsgo

    letsgo Valued Member Premium Member GOLD

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    As long as they taste good :) We bought ours in we had fruit bats eating them. All up we bought it over 110 mangoes, so yummy. So had odd spots but once cut out tasted yummy :)
     
  5. ClissAT

    ClissAT Valued Member Premium Member GOLD

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    Yes its sunburn & the heat of the sun has cooked that part of the flesh unfortunately Mooncat.
    The rest of the mango is quite edible so go ahead & freeze them.
    I am in the throws of picking my 5trees all heavily laden with quite large mangoes & I'm struggling to get them off before the sun gets them but at the same time leaving them as long as possible to ripen enough.
    The sunburn is worst once the sugars are developing in the flesh.
    Most of mine have the black sap marks that make them almost unsalable except to people who value organic produce & understand that the fruit will have marks but the flesh is still fantastic.
    Make sure you put the remains in your compost as mangos are a powerhouse of nutrients.
    But don't get sucked in to saving any seedlings that come up in your compost! They will result in horrible fruit & possible disease, unfortunately.
     
  6. Mark

    Mark Founder Staff Member

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    It could be Grey Mould or Botrytis Fungus - according to NSW Agri website.

    Spread by the wind. Hopefully, it will eventually go away and not keep infecting your crops but if the fruit is still mostly edible then I would be too concerned myself.

    Anthracnose is rampant at our place but we just eat or process our fruit ASAP to beat the blackened skin problem when left to sit too long on the bench or tree.

    I do sometimes give the trees a copper spray during flowering to ensure fruit set but rarely after that.
     
  7. mooncat

    mooncat Member Premium Member

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    Thanks everyone. I chopped and froze them last night and all up only lost about 1/4 of the crop to inedible pale flesh. The rest was unreal in sweet lemony flavour, like nothing from any shop ever! Am convinced that the problem was sun exposure after picking as each fruit was only marked in the upper most part exposed to direct sunlight after they were all laid out. Good lesson for next time. Wasn't quite sure if they were actually ripe or not but wanted to get them in before the bats etc took them all! Got a few more on the tree which are a bit too far to reach for me. Next lesson will be how to bring the tree to a more manageable level. Been on our property 6 years now and not touched the tree which is now about 20 foot high. If we prune hard will this inhibit fruit production next season or promote new growth?
     
  8. ClissAT

    ClissAT Valued Member Premium Member GOLD

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    Mangoes flower on fresh leaf growth that springs from mature wood.
    What that means is next year you wont get a crop from the new growth that grows on the pruned branches. But you will still get a crop from the unpruned branches.

    The following year you will get an even better crop on the new growth that resulted from the pruning so it is worth doing. You just have to keep onto it once you start doing it because mangoes have a genetic potential to reach a certain height & they like to keep striving for that height! They wont stop trying! So in a way you bring work onto yourself. Sort of a double edged sword. The way to prevent that extra work is to plant trees that are grafted onto dwarfing root stock. Those trees should not attain more than 4m although I have one here that is already 5m & still young(ish).

    In the plantations they have these huge horizontal circular saws that mow the tops off the trees every year. Then every few years they use the same saws but vertical to take the sides off the trees also. So the trees almost end up square shaped. They do alternate rows each year.

    I am also aiming to significantly lower the height of my trees this year.
    I have a 6m long bamboo picker but it is still not long enough to get the highest fruit.
    I will cut 2 of the trees right down to main branches after fruiting is finished this year but leave another 2 to crop next year.
    After they have cropped next year I will prune them right down also.
    The 5th tree is special being a Brookes, & I will do that tree half this year & half next year.
    I would hate to not have any of its fruit for even one year. Far better taste, more luxurious texture & a far thinner seed than the Bowens (Kensington Prides). I wouldn't plant an R2E2.

    I have purchased a geodesic dome which I will be experimenting with as a frame for a complete barrier. So I am aiming at trees no taller than 4.5-5m at cropping time which will give a 1-2m head space above the leaves
    But they can be as wide as 12m, even if I end up having to add support posts under the horizontal branches.
    The extra pruning will induce more fruit which will be heavier & healthier.

    I am already having trouble with the crop this year because I took the crowns out of all my trees last year. So with the rain we had 2mths ago, the branches are filled with sap & very flexible. They are bending right down almost to the ground like willow trees from the weight of the large crop.
     
  9. Mark

    Mark Founder Staff Member

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    I would prune it in winter as to not stress the tree out too much but yes mangoes respond well to a good prune back.

    I cut our Bowen back 4 years ago (see pic) and again a few months back. You might see a reduction in fruit the first year but probably an increase after that due to new growth and less disease.

    mango tree cut pruned bowen 1000.jpg
     
  10. ClissAT

    ClissAT Valued Member Premium Member GOLD

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    I must admit I too thought to prune in winter to prevent sunburn but apparently that was not a good move.
    The industry experts recommend pruning right after the crop has been harvested as the trees go into a state of dormancy for a few months whilst still having reserves in their branches.
     
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