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North Queensland

AU: Conditions perfect for solid mango crop

North Queensland mango growers are preparing for an early November harvest, with trees in full flower across the region.

And Dale Williams, the owner of one of the North’s largest mango orchards, Euri Gold Farms, near Bowen, said at this stage of the mango cycle, every bloom counted.

“If you protect the flower, you can get a good fruit set and pollination,” he said.

“Even though trees may look good, it’s too early to predict what that tree will produce fruit-wise.

“You don’t know until the fruit has gone through the dropping phase but if you start with a good flowering that is a good indicator of a good fruit set.”

However, Mr Williams said the conditions were perfect for a solid mango crop.

“Dry conditions like we are having at the moment is what we need for a good crop, as well as the nice cool mornings we have had,” he said. “The cool temperatures helped trigger the flower and the shape of the flowering.

“What we don’t need is heavy rain now as that will wash the pollen out of the flower. Light rain is fine though.”

Mr Williams said he expected to start picking in early November.

“It would appear that each mango region has flowered when it should have done,” he said. “That is important so we don’t have the level of overlap, of glut, like we did last year. Things seem to be back to a normal cycle.

“The market can’t handle multiple regions having their peak picking at the same time.

“Ideally, one mango ­region should be slowing down and another one should be ramping up.”

The main mango growing regions included Bowen, Burdekin, Rockhampton, Mareeba and the Northern Territory. During the 2017-18 season, the Australian mango industry produced a total crop of 10.7 million trays, compared to 8.6 million trays in 2016-17, representing a 24.5 per cent increase in production.

The total volume of mangoes that came out of North Queensland last season, including production regions of Dimbulah, Mareeba, Burdekin and Bowen, was 3,812,102 trays.


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