A mature mango tree can reach 100 feet in height with a canopy more than 100 feet in diameter. To make commercial and private growing of the fruit feasible, dwarf varieties of mango trees have been developed through hybridization and grafting techniques. These dwarf trees allow easier harvesting and often produce fruit earlier than full-size varieties.
Julie is a naturally dwarf hybrid developed in Trinidad and later introduced in Florida. It is extremely popular in the Caribbean, especially Jamaica, and it is the principal mango exported from that region to Europe. The fruit is sweet and of a generally high quality. The variety is no longer grown in Florida because the state's humidity makes the tree susceptible to fatal fungal infections.
An intense period of hybridization in India near the middle of the 20th century resulted in the selection of 750 new hybrids, some of which were reliably dwarf. Amrapali is a true dwarf cross between Dashehari and Neelum. Amrapali is a prolific producer of medium-sized sweet fruit with fiber-free orange flesh. It is a reliable bearer, and it is suitable for high-density planting, making it a good commercial choice.
A cultivar developed in Florida in 1939, Irwin is a somewhat dwarf tree that grows 15 to 20 feet in height and produces a heavy crop of medium-sized fiberless fruit of good quality. The fruit, which grows on the tree in hanging clusters, has deep orange or pink skin with an extensive dark red blush, and the flesh is mild in flavor. The fruit is grown for the local market and not shipped long distances because overripe fruit becomes mottled and unsuitable for the commercial market.
Other Dwarf Cultivars
A parent of Amrapali, Neelum is a somewhat dwarf variety. Like most Indian mangoes, Neelum produces yellow-skinned fruit with deep yellow or orange flesh. Mallika is another hybrid of Neelum; it is a semidwarf variety that produces a high quality aromatic fruit. Carrie is a dwarf cultivar that is popular among home gardeners. Manilita is a Mexican cultivar that is also well suited to patio growing. Toledo is a Cuban cultivar that generally remains under 8 feet in height and produces small fruit.
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