Common Mango – Mangifera indica

Mangoes
Mangoes

Mango

It’s a fruit from warm climate
odd shaped I’ll  agree.
Smooth texture outside
and inside you’ll see….

 

I love the mango
so unique you will see.
It grows everywhere here
for all intent it is free.

By Doug Heyman, Key West, Florida
February 2005

 

This plant has been cultivated as early as the 5th-4th centuries BC, but only reached Brazil, the West Indies and Mexico after the 10th century AD. The tree reached Hawaii before 1825, but in most of the Pacific it was only introduced in the last 100 years!

 

The Mango tree is central in Hindu and Buddhist cultures, being sacred in India. It is a symbol of love, and the leaves can often be found decorating the lintels of temples on special occasions. A perfectly ripe mango is oft found in Ganesha’s hand as a symbol of attainment. The flowers are used in the worship of the goddess Sarawati. The Mango has a prominent place in folklore and legend.

 

Many parts of the tree are utilized by man in everyday living: the fruit is food, the flowers and bark are astringent, Diabetes has been treated with leaf infusion, and the wood is used in building. The kernels are used as cattle and poultry feed with proper treatment. They also attract birds, bats, and bees.

 

It is the national fruit of India, Pakistan and the Philippines. It is also used to obtain a yellow dye by feeding the leaves to cattle and harvesting their urine!

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