How to Graft a Mango Tree
Grafting is a popular and effective technique that takes a branch from one tree and secures it to another tree to grow. You can graft different kinds of fruits onto the same tree. There are many grafting techniques and, according to the International Society for Horticultural Science, the cleft graft has showed tremendous establishment success in Mango trees, including 100 percent success in some studies. If this is your first time grafting, it is an art and a science, so it may take a couple tries to get it right. Graft mango trees in the spring.
Select a branch to graft that is no higher than four to six feet from the ground. The branch should be free of knots and about one to two inches in diameter. Cut it with a saw, two to three feet from the main branch. This branch is called the rootstock.
Select two branches from another tree to graft that are 3/8 to 5/8 of an inch in diameter. These branches are called scions and should be at least three to four inches long and cut to include three buds.
Make a wedge on the bottom end of the scions. Use a grafting tool to slice two diagonal cuts about 1 1/2 inches long on either side of the bark to form a wedge.
Cut a two-inch slit into the cut rootstock using a large knife, ax or grafting chisel.
Open the slit with a tool, such as a screwdriver, and gently push in the two wedged scions. One scion should be near each end of the rootstock. Remove the tool. They will not fit perfectly together at this point.
Use grafting compound to seal the area. Be sure to seal the rootstock as far as down as the splitting and that all raw wood is covered.
Keep an eye on your graft as it grows. You may need to secure it with a brace (a piece of wood tied on) to prevent the new branches from breaking caused by ice, wind, storms or birds. Do not prune the first year, but keep the underbrush pruned so that it does not cover or shade the grafted area.
Prune starting in the second year. One scion will become the dominant branch and the other will be a spare. The second year, cut off the spare, but leave a few buds. This will help the graft heal. In future years cut the spare completely back.