Mangoes (mangos) are one of the most popular fruits in the world. Not only are they a great source of vitamin c, vitamin a and fiber, but in India, a mango is a symbol of love. A basket of mangoes is a gesture of friendship in the country.
Check out 20 more mango facts:
- Mangoes first appeared in India over 5,000 years ago.
- Around 300 or 400 A.D., the seeds spread from Asia to the Middle East, East Africa and South America thanks to traveling humans.
- Mangoes are related to cashews and pistachios.
- Their trees can grow up to 100 feet with a canopy of over 35 feet.
- Trees can still bear fruit after 300 years.
- Their flowers are pollinated by insects.
- Less than 1% of the flowers will mature.
- It takes about 4 to 6 years for a tree to bear fruit.
- Trees are harvested once a year.
- It takes about 4 months for the fruit to mature and each one is harvested by hand.
- Mango leaves are toxic for cattle feed. Burning their leaves, wood, or debris is also toxic.
- The fruit is not judged on ripeness by color, but by squeezing. A ripe mango should have a little give.
- A firm fruit will ripen at room temperature within a few days.
- India is the largest producer of the fruit, followed by China and Thailand.
- Only Florida, California, Hawaii, and Puerto Rico can grow mangos in the United States.
- There are about 4,000 acres being cultivated in Puerto Rico commercially for the last 30 years; however, majority of the crop goes to Europe.
- Majority of the mangoes sold in the United States come from Mexico, Peru, Ecuador, Brazil, Guatemala, and Haiti.
- The first attempt to introduce mangoes to the U.S. was made in Florida in 1833.
- There are over 500 varieties throughout the world. The most popular varieties sold in the United States are Tommy Atkins, Haden, Kent, Keitt, Ataulfo and Francis.
- The fruit is available all year.
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