Position – The mangosteen tree grows best in wet tropical conditions with temperatures between 20-30°C. Temperatures below 5°C will kill this tree. Due to it being tropical, it cannot withstand wind or frost. Plant this tree in 30-50% shade for the first 4 years after that, you can gradually move it to full sun.
Incorporating the African Mangosteen into your garden can infuse an exotic touch of beauty and flavor into your landscape. Its arresting appearance, delectable fruits, and compatibility with specific soil types make it a tree well worth considering for your subtropical or tropical garden. Whether you’re a gardening enthusiast, a nature lover, or a Bonsai artist, the African Mangosteen offers an enthralling horticultural journey.
Size – One of the distinct characteristics of the African Mangosteen is its leisurely growth rate. While this might not be optimal for those seeking rapid garden results, it is ideal for maintaining a manageable tree size in smaller garden spaces. This ensures that gardeners enjoy the tree without fretting about it overtaking their cherished garden.
Its distinct appearance and easily managed size provide an exciting challenge for those keen on experimenting with crafting these trees into unconventional Bonsai styles.
Soil type – African Mangosteen trees thrive best in deep, sandy soils. Soil can be a clay loam that holds moisture well. Ensure to add plenty of organic matter into the soil. Recommended soil pH is between 5 and 6. They naturally occur in semi-fossilized beach dunes, showcasing their adaptability to such unique environments. While these trees can grow in other soil types, they may not reach their full potential in less ideal conditions.
Water – Water the tree regularly, especially during the dry season. In the absence of rainfall, the frequency can vary depending on soil type, climate, and local weather conditions; do not allow it to become waterlogged. Make sure the drainage is good.
Ensure that the water penetrates the root zone effectively. Water should reach a depth of at least 30-45 centimeters to encourage deep-root development. Shallow watering can lead to shallow root systems, making the tree more vulnerable to drought.
Pruning – Prune only the dead branches and inside shoots when needed.
Fertilising – Fertilizing young African Mangosteen plants is essential during the warmer months to provide them with the nutrients for healthy growth. Use a balanced, slow-release, granular fertilizer with a nutrient ratio of N-P-K (Nitrogen-Phosphorus-Potassium) around 10-10-10 or similar. Our slow-release, called berry fertiliser, on our website is ideal for these trees. Use only one teaspoon every five months.
You can also enrich the soil with organic matter, such as compost or well-rotted manure.
Harvesting – Pick the fruit by hand when it is soft.