Update your Mangosteen plants

simon_growMarch 10, 2011

Hey everyone, I decided to try my hand at growing Mangosteens and have gone through many of the old threads. It would be great if everyone can update with pics of your plants and give any advice besides keeping it out of the cold and giving it high humidity.

I already ordered a 12 inch tall new sweet variety from Ebay and will probably pick up another plant from some other source. I intend to grow it indoors probaby for its entire life, which according to the older threads, may be only a few months:)

Can the different Garcinias be grafted onto each other? I remember reading one post where a grower was foliar feeding and his tree was doing really good. eggo also had the largest most beautiful Mangosteen plant in CA and his post was several years old, I wonder how his plant is doing now.

Well anyways, I know it is very unlikely I will get my plant to grow welll, let alone fruit but I'm crazy like that. Please share your growing experiences and help motivate those of us that are trying.

Simon

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tropicaliste

I don't have a lot to exactly advise you on, but your patience is probably the most important thing in this case, because keeping it warm, watered, and humid isn't that hard, it's so slow growing and the seedling I had didn't push out growth very often... it's the satisfaction of growing your own Mangosteen that is the most rewarding with this kind of plant I think...

:)

p.s. wasn't a poster trying to graft Mangosteen onto the yellow mangosteen rootstock a while back?

    Bookmark   March 10, 2011 at 12:56AM
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jsvand5

I have probably spent around $300 on mangosteens in the last few years. Grafted and seedlings. All dead. I have given up on them. I wish you luck but I think it is pretty hopeless. Especially with the lower humidity out in CA. I would try Achachairu. Supposedly the fruit is supposed to be almost as good as mangosteen but they are simple to grow. I have one that has at least tripled in size in the last 2 years.

    Bookmark   March 10, 2011 at 12:56AM
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simon_grow

Here are two link that have a lot of information on Mangosteens. I found these links while digging through old Mangosteen posts.
http://www.agroforestry.net/scps/Mangosteen_specialty_crop.pdf http://www.icuc-iwmi.org/files/Publications/Mangosteen_Manual.pdf.pdf

I believe there was another link to some info about approach grafting Mangosteens onto something else which made the mangosteen grow much better but I can't seem to find it. Any little bit of info can help.

I think that aside from keeping the mangosteen warm and humid, keeping the plant in ambient light and watering with Reverse Osmosis water (or better yet rain water) with very very very diluted foliar feedings may be the key to keeping Mangosteens happy. I have a haunch that hard water via tap water in Florida and CA will accumulate excess calcium and other minerals which may inhibit other nutrient uptake.

It would be nice if we can find out what type of soil organisms are associated with the rhizosphere of older full production well established mangosteen trees in Thailand. Are there any endp/ecto mycorrhizae associated with mangosteens?

    Bookmark   March 10, 2011 at 1:00AM
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ohiojay(z6 OH)

Bernie Dizon in the Philippines states that the best expectations come from mangosteen grafted onto mangosteen, whether it is cleft or approach grafting.

Mine is about 10' now and blooming and fruiting. I have lots of pics and I'd post them all but I'm still waiting for a part for my camera so I can upload pics. I should get it any day now! Hmmmm...sounds awful familiar...

    Bookmark   March 10, 2011 at 6:49AM
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rayandgwenn(z11 Puerto Rico)

Jay- LOL!

Update on my tree (growing in almost perfect outdoor weather conditions but with my less than perfect care):
My tree IS over 6 ft tall now and just pushing out new growth. Still no blooms. 4 years since I got it, it was about 3 ft tall when I bought it, so they are really slow growers.
I will post pictures soon. Honestly!

    Bookmark   March 10, 2011 at 7:30AM
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jsvand5

How is yours doing Jay? I think you may have set the record for keeping them alive (aside from the cheaters growing them in places where they are actually supposed to be able to grow...)

    Bookmark   March 10, 2011 at 8:32AM
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boson(Delray Beach,Florida)

Hi,

I have to agree with what jsvand5 said. Growing Achachairu instead is not a bad idea. They seem to be easy to grow from my own experience. I have a few Aohachairu, they are really tolerant. At one time I had completely forgot about some of the potted Aohachairu and they were totally dried up, but recovered quickly.

Tomas

    Bookmark   March 10, 2011 at 8:33AM
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puglvr1(9b central FL)

Lol Jay!! It does sound awfully familiar...hmmm ;o)

    Bookmark   March 10, 2011 at 10:35AM
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tropicaliste

Jay: Your wife is from Thailand, what is your experience if any sending back trees through the mail? I'd like to mail back a few trees from Dizon's farm in the Philippines the next time I visit...

:)

    Bookmark   March 10, 2011 at 11:08AM
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simon_grow

Ohiojay, I just recieved my 12 inch tall new variety Mangosteen and it already has 3 fully formed Mangosteens on it. I cut them open and they were delicious but my camera was broken so I didn't take any pics.

Ok, all kidding aside, I've never even heard of Achachairu before, thanks for the info jsvand5. Now I'll have to do some more research and get one of these guys. I figure I'll just attempt to grow my mangosteens as a house plant and if it does well after about 5 or so years, I may build a heated greenhouse around it.

    Bookmark   March 10, 2011 at 11:58AM
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ohiojay(z6 OH)

Trop...you can certainly send anything you want back thru the mail. However...always one of these eh? However, you have to figure on your shipment being stopped by Customs/USDA and destroyed because you will not have the proper documentation nor will it have gone to a proper inspection station. If the plants do make it home, then that will be fantastic! But plan on being disappointed and it won't hurt as bad when it happens.

I've been burned following all of their rules and procedures just trying to get freaking seeds!! Never again!! I'll take my chances without them fools. I understand what they are trying to do and prevent, but...

If you went online and got all your permits, labels, and other documentation and brought them with you to the Philippines, you will have a better chance of getting the plants to the US, inspected, and passed. Bring all of this documentation and instructions on what to do with them to the nursery for them to use properly...if they will even ship to the US.

But again, don't expect this to be worry free. You don't live in the major cities where the main inspection stations reside and do this on an every day basis. Chances are your plants will end up at an inspection station where they know little about all the rules and regs and how to get the plant to you after they are done.

There is a reason why very few people, outside of big nurseries, do this crap. It is just not worth the headache and expenses involved. You are money ahead taking your chances and shipping the plants yourself thru regular mail. Get your online permits and throw them in the box, you might luck out and confuse the hell out of someone and allow your plants a free pass!!

    Bookmark   March 10, 2011 at 2:21PM
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tropicaliste

Wow what a pita! I didn't think that it would be so difficult, whenever I bring back seeds I try to make them look as professional as possible but on my last trip my Marang seeds were in two bags, one in a moist bag which sprouted then molded and then another that dried... I tried to collect my fruits and not open them until the last moment then put them in the baggies but next time I think I need some kind of packing medium to preserve them better in addition to not bagging them up until the night before my visit ends. Makes a lot more sense to buy and ship from HI and PR like you all did.

:)

    Bookmark   March 10, 2011 at 8:44PM
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andrew78(6)

I had great luck when I went to Puerto Rico about 5 years ago. I brought back a bunch of orchids, sugar cane, quenepa fruits, and I am sure I am forgetting something else. Anyhow, when you go to the airport, you have to get in line at the USDA inspection security area. I have to admit I started getting pretty nervous then!! I watched this woman putting the suitcases on the conveyor belt and putting them thru the machine. I had packed all my plants in what the Puertoricans call calderos. There like dutch ovens but they use them to make there rice in. So, she got it up there and I swear, when my suitcase went in, she turned her head to sneaze and it went right thru!! No bells or whistles which I understand they do now.

Sadly, I lsot all my plants from Puerto Rico. The sugar cane grew like crazy! I went in June and by the time fall came around, the sugar cane was probobly 5ft tall but it wasn't thick enough yet. There was no sweetness to it and I didn't have the proper lighting to put it under. That's why I lost them all.
Andrew

    Bookmark   March 10, 2011 at 9:13PM
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tropicaliste

Lol my situation was similar though the inspectors mainly are obsessed with people bringing in dried cured meats as if I would bring back Pepperoni from the Philippines. How'd you lug back calderos? Aren't the calderos made from metal? Least the Filipino kind are. Why not ship? Isn't that a priority mail capable?
Simon didn't mean to hijack your posting so sorry...

:)

    Bookmark   March 10, 2011 at 10:30PM
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andrew78(6)

Yeah the calderos are metal but they were perfect to plant my plants in. I bought a set of 3 at the Walmart in Fajardo and they were $20! At the time, you couldn't beat the price.
Andrew

    Bookmark   March 10, 2011 at 10:52PM
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mango_kush

I would like to see who has the largest Mangosteen tree in the US

    Bookmark   March 11, 2011 at 9:21PM
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jfernandez(10B)

I believe Fullerton Arboretum claims to have one and about 5' tall.

JF

    Bookmark   March 11, 2011 at 10:16PM
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simon_grow

I really wonder how big eggo's Mangosteen tree is? I remember eggo posted a pic of his tree and it was absolutely beautiful. Really full, perfect leaves and excellent branching. I also just saw Jacob 13's post and he also has a beautiful mangosteen tree. I'll post a pic of mine once I recieve it in the mail.

Simon

    Bookmark   March 12, 2011 at 3:54AM
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ohiojay(z6 OH)

That's easy. Largest mangosteens will be at Whitmans...if the nephew hasn't removed them yet. Next would be at the Whitman pavillion at Fairchilds. All have been fruiting for sometime now. Whitman's were huge.

    Bookmark   March 12, 2011 at 2:23PM
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murahilin(10 fl)

I think the ones at Whitman are still alive. The ones at Fairchild are about 10ft tall.

How tall is yours again Jay? Fruiting yet?

    Bookmark   March 12, 2011 at 9:32PM
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ohiojay(z6 OH)

Has been for quite a while! Lots of pics...but all polaroid, none digital. Sorry!

    Bookmark   March 12, 2011 at 10:46PM
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andrew78(6)

Hearing that Whitman's and Fairchild's are doing so well and fruiting makes me wonder what there doing that all you guys are having a hard time doing. Any thoughts? I still haven't been able to even try mangosteen fruits yet. IF anyone can tell me where I can find some please let me know. I would like to know what all this mangosteen mania is all about!!

Andrew

    Bookmark   March 13, 2011 at 5:05PM
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ohiojay(z6 OH)

Let's see...what were they able to do different than the rest of us...hmmm. Well, let's start with Whitman. He had most of his property dug out and over 600 truckloads of acidic soil brought in. Except for a few odd freezing days, his property experienced a near perfect tropical climate. He had at his disposal tons of experience and nearly any expert in the world to bump heads with. He had loads of patience and time, and a very very very large bank account.

Fairchilds...draws on experienced hands from all over the world with several in house. A multi-million dollar greenhouse with perfect soil and conditions...and a wee bit bigger than mine. Plus they are already in a much better climate than most of us.

Both Whitman and Fairchild have/had access to the best of the best as far as plant material goes.

The plants don't tolerate half-assed measures very well. Mangosteen, like many of the ultra-tropicals, go down hill fast once a decline is started. You don't get growth flushes on these like many others to help in recovery or to give you time at a second chance. Their root structure sucks to start with and continues to suck.

Have I left anything out guys?

    Bookmark   March 13, 2011 at 6:53PM
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tropicaliste

Jay tell us how you really feel. haha :p

Can you use Fulvic acid to increase the root yield and then on top of that use an air prune container?

Even my family's land in the PH won't just hold these "ultra-tropical" trees without quite a bit more effort because it's much cooler in the north... Mangoes, Papayas, Sweetsop and more just grow by the roadside, but no Mangosteens; only my aunt in the very south has Mangosteens, Rambutans, and Lanzones.

:)

    Bookmark   March 13, 2011 at 9:23PM
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PHBIRDS

UPDATED PIC OF MANGOSTEEN

    Bookmark   November 30, 2013 at 11:33PM
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LivingParadise(10b)

I'm curious since the topic has come up - could those who have eaten fresh Mangosteen share their experience of the taste?

I ate one I bought in a grocery store in the NE (US) a few years ago - it cost $4 which I thought was ludicrous at the time, but I bought it anyway because I had never tried one before and I make it a habit to try every new fruit I come across. This was before my forays into tropical fruit growing, so I had never heard of the hype at the time. I thought it tasted like Lychee - good but I was not that impressed. I could buy a whole bunch of lychees for $4! However, it may not have been in very good shape considering what it went through to get to that store and wait for someone adventurous to buy it, so maybe that assessment is not a fair one.

A few years later and here I am growing one that I bought for some $150 including shipping - it's 3ft tall, and thus far healthy, but it's early yet. I feel a little foolish, chasing after this dream for something that maybe isn't even that amazing, and is expensive to try to keep alive. I know, that's blasphemous to say! But can anyone here actually confirm that they think this is the best-tasting fruit in the world, worth all this trouble to try to fruit successfully? Or is this just the impossible dream, a crazed hobby for those like myself with some ego to feed?

I adore so many other fruits - is Mangosteen really worth the work outside of its natural habitat? Does it live up to the hype? Or is the joy all in the chase?...

    Bookmark   April 14, 2014 at 10:50AM
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tropicbreezent

I think Mangosteens are the best, but a bad one is really bad. They don't keep so well when they're transported long distances and that could be part of the problem. I bought one a few years back but it turned out to be a yellow one, G. xanthochymus. Already have a fairly large one of those which has been fruiting a few years, has fruit at the moment. Annoyed that it took me some years to notice the bought one was turning out the same as the older one. Recently bought a G. mangostana. Haven't got around to working out where to plant it so still in the pot. Also got a G. warreni, because they're native to this area, but the fruit is apparently all seed. So it's just there for the interest. In the ground and now about the height of 2 average people.

    Bookmark   April 15, 2014 at 4:54AM
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sapote(10a)

"I'm curious since the topic has come up - could those who have eaten fresh Mangosteen share their experience of the taste?
I ate one I bought in a grocery store in the NE (US) a few years ago - it cost $4 which I thought was ludicrous at the time, but I bought it anyway because I had never tried one before and I make it a habit to try every new fruit I come across. This was before my forays into tropical fruit growing, so I had never heard of the hype at the time. I thought it tasted like Lychee - good but I was not that impressed. I could buy a whole bunch of lychees for $4! However, it may not have been in very good shape considering what it went through to get to that store and wait for someone adventurous to buy it, so maybe that assessment is not a fair one.

A few years later and here I am growing one that I bought for some $150 including shipping - it's 3ft tall, and thus far healthy, but it's early yet. I feel a little foolish, chasing after this dream for something that maybe isn't even that amazing, and is expensive to try to keep alive. I know, that's blasphemous to say! But can anyone here actually confirm that they think this is the best-tasting fruit in the world, worth all this trouble to try to fruit successfully? Or is this just the impossible dream, a crazed hobby for those like myself with some ego to feed?

I adore so many other fruits - is Mangosteen really worth the work outside of its natural habitat? Does it live up to the hype? Or is the joy all in the chase?..."

ok, I had ate many, fresh in Saigon, Vietnam. I must say I agreed to the name Queen of Fruit. It's far from similar to Lychee taste at its best. It's the queen both for its taste and it's not an easy plant to grow and have fruit, even in the tropic. Even in Vietnam only a certain area in the south grow them and no other places in the same county could grow them successfully.

I can't describe the taste; I think one just have to try it fresh -- in VN or Thai or Malaysia.

    Bookmark   April 15, 2014 at 9:27PM
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LivingParadise(10b)

Good to know that my pursuit is worth it if I can successfully fruit! I saw an article noting also that Jamaicans who are able to get fruit often think it's over-hyped. So it may have to do with soil, humidity, or other conditions that affect the fruit. Perhaps only those grown in the original conditions in SE Asia really have the edge on the best flavor. I don't know what it would take or even IF the rest of us can replicate those same conditions in a satisfactory way to get the best flavor out of mangosteens, but if we can I would be more than happy to taste the results!

Just because one gets a plant to fruit does not mean it will be of the same quality as all others of the same species - hence obsessions over how to grow the best grapes, apples etc... it's not like every vineyard produces the same level of wine just because they all have the same cultivar of grapes. So too, I guess, with mangosteens. I hope I might be one of the lucky ones though eventually to try the fruit of my own tree and judge if the taste was worth it!

    Bookmark   April 16, 2014 at 12:07PM
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