Mango, the country's national fruit is considered as one of the finest in the world. It is the third most important fruit crop of the country based on export volume and value next to banana and pineapple. It has an established domestic market and has bright opportunities for the international market both in fresh or processed form. The country's export variety, The "Carabao Mango" is one of the best varieties in the world. 
(Source: Department of Agriculture, Date accessed 24 March 2014)

For Cost and Returns, you may visit the Bureau of Agricultural Statistics.

For further assistance in your area, you may check the Technical and Financial Assistance Directory.

Cultural Management


Favorable Growing Conditions

Mango grows best at tropical places with temperatures ranging from 21'C-27'C and a well- distributed annual rainfall.

  • Elevation: within 600 meters above sea level (400 m considered ideal)
  • Weather for inducing maturity of vegetative parts and flowering: distinct wet and dry (3 to 5 months-dry)
  • Weather for fruit development: plenty of sunlight
  • Soil - Loamy, relatively high in organic matter with a good water holding capacity, soil pH of 6.0-7.0
  • Soil texture: good water holding capacity
  • Topography: flat to rolling, not exceeding 45 degrees gradient
  • Drainage: well-drained soil; less moisture level needed during maturation of leaves and buds, flowering, fruit set and ripening
  • Distance of planting: depending on variety

Propagation Practices

There are two methods of propagating mango, namely, sexual and asexual propagation

Sexual propagation – Growing of rootstocks

  • Extract seeds from ripe fruits
  • De-husk seeds to hasten germination
  • Sow the seeds in seed boxes or elevated plots. The ideal medium is a mixture of one part compost and the one part garden soil. Composting materials like sawdust, coconut coir dust, rice hull and other similar organic materials can also be used.
  • Water seed boxes or seed plots to maintain enough moisture. Provide drainage for excess water.
  • Transfer seedlings with 2 to 3 leaves in black plastic bags (7"x11") filled with garden soil mixed with decomposed organic materials.
  • Apply fertilizer (16-20-0 mixed with urea) 30 days after potting at the rate of ¾ teaspoon per bag.
  • Thereafter, spray foliar at weekly intervals.
  • Apply fertilizer again (same as step 6) every 30 days.
  • Spray with pesticide when the need arises. Most common problems are scale insects, cecid fly, corn silk beetle and anthracnose.
  • Rootstocks are ready for grafting upon attaining "pencil size" stem diameter (10-12 months germination).

Asexual propagation (grafting, budding, inarching, etc.)

  • Through Grafting
  • Grow the rootstock seedlings up to pencil size diameter (8 to 12 months)
  • Get mature scion (pencil size with plump end) from healthy mother trees having superior characteristics
  • Remove the leaves and clean the scion. Immediately place inside plastic bag to prevent transpiration and drying up
  • Cut the stem of the rootstock preferably at the tender joint near the active growing shoot one foot from the base. Make an incision, ¼ inch deep from the cut, at the center of the stem
  • Make a clean V cut at the base of the scion
  • Insert the scion's V cut base at the incision of the rootstock, seeing to it that the cambium layer or skin of both the scion and the rootstock meet
  • Bind them together gently but firmly with plastic tape. Wrap the entire scion from the joint to the tip to prevent drying
  • Place the newly grafted seedlings in partly-shaded environment
  • Water regularly until flushing (appearance of new leaves) occurs. This is usually observed in 15 to 20 days
  • When this happens, remove the plastic strip that covers the tip to enhance growth. Leave the strip that binds the joint.
  • Grafts are ready for disposal after 8 to 10 months. Hardening is however, recommended prior to field planting
  • Grafts not sold after 1 year should be re-bagged using bigger plastic containers

Land Preparation

  • Prepare lay-out of the farm
  • There are four lay-outs to choose from:
    • Square system (how tos)
    • Triangle system (how tos)
    • Quincunx system (how tos)
    • Contour system (how tos)
  • Place stakes (markers) at the site of the planting
  • Dig one cubic meter hole and refill with fertile soil (usually soil mixed with decomposed organic materials and fertilizer).
  • Pour water into the hole and allow the water to be absorbed by the soil.
  • Remove the plastic bag carefully.
  • Remove the plastic bag carefully.
  • Plant the graft in the center and cover the hole with the remaining soil.
  • Protect the newly-planted graft from intense heat by providing shed using coconut leaves.
  • Apply mulch to conserve soil moisture.

Crop Establishment

Distance of Planting

Factors to consider:

  • topography of the land
  • development program of the farm
  • variety
  • soil fertility
  • planting of intercrops – kinds of intercrops (to include a table containing recommended distance of planting and total number of trees per hectare using different systems of planting)

Pruning and Thinning
As a general rule, the farmer should begin pruning and thinning when the crown or foliage of the trees starts to meet. Pruning is the removal of undesirable vegetative parts of the tree, usually the crowded branches. Insect-infested and diseased branches, leaves, flowers or other plant parts need to be removed also.

An integral part of pruning is training the canopy to a manageable size, shape and height.

Type of Canopy:

  • open center
  • formative
  • modified ladder
  • conventional
  • dwarfing

Pruning is done to allow sunlight to penetrate in the crown and free air circulation, thereby reducing incidence of insect pests and diseases. In general, pruned trees produce bigger and high quality fruits compared to unpruned trees.

The best time to prune is after harvest. When done during summer, the wounded parts dry and heal faster.

Other Considerations when Pruning

  • Select only the parts to be pruned (minimal pruning)
  • Cut small branches first followed by large branches (minimal pruning only)
  • Always make a clean cut at the base of the branch and avoid leaving stumps where unwanted water sprouts may grow
  • Paint or spray the open cut with fungicide, tar or disinfectant when pruning is done during wet season
  • Remove all debris and maintain cleanliness of the surrounding areas.

Nutrient Management

In the first five years, the trees need high rate of nitrogen fertilizers. To promote faster vegetative growth, organic fertilizer application is also recommended. As the trees reach bearing age, more emphasis should be given on phosphorous and potassium. Phosphorous fertilizer promotes root and flower development while potassium is for fruiting and ripening. Apply fertilizer containing 4-5% phosphoric acid and 8-15% potash.

Important Considerations in Fertilizer Application:

  • When applying fertilizer, dig a few holes (6-8 holes) around the tree or a canal within the area covered by the canopy. For big trees, follow canopy drip line.
  • The zone of maximum and efficient utilization of fertilizers is 30 deep and 100 cm from the trunk of 5-10 year old trees. This goes a little farther as the tree crown becomes wider
  • The preferred time of fertilizer application for non-bearing trees or at the juvenile stage is at the start and before the end of the rainy season, when the soil is still wet. Fertilizer can also be applied during the dry season if there is irrigation.
  • The procedure for fertilizer application is similar for both bearing and young trees.
  • At flowering, spraying of foliar fertilizer is recommended as supplement.

Flower Induction

In inducing mango trees to bear flower, the following should be considered:

  • Different mango varieties have varied flowering and fruiting habits. The 'Carabao' variety under normal conditions bears fruits every two to three years.
  • Chemical flower inducers should not be used under the following circumstances:
  • When the tree is too small or still young
  • When the leaves and buds are young
  • When the tree is weak and sickly
  • During rainy days
  • Just after harvest or when the tree has fruits or is in flushing stage
  • High dosage of flower inducers (2.0 to 3.0% KNO3 ) should be used when:
  • Trees are just starting to mature
  • Leaves and buds are maturing
  • The tree is healthy with vigorous buds and leaves
  • During cloudy weather
  • Sprayed six to seven months after harvest
  • Use low dosage of flower inducers (1.0 to 2.0% KNO3 ) when:
  • Trees are big, old or fully mature
  • Leaves and buds are fully mature
  • Tree is healthy with dormant buds
  • Sprayed during sunny weather
  • Sprayed seven to nine months after harvest
  • Induce flowering only once a year
  • From flowering to harvest, it takes 7-8 months to rejuvenate and accumulate enough nutrients for the next fruiting season
  • Trees that bear fruits last season but have not flushed should not be induced to flower
  • Spraying should be done when the tree and leaves are dry and with no expected rain within the next 6 hours
  • Potassium nitrate is the generic name of chemical flower inducer in mango. The chemical symbol of this compound is KNO3. This contains 13% nitrogen and 46% potash, thus, 13-0-46. When sprayed, it supplies the potassium deficiency of the tree and in the process, induces flowering.
  • When spraying potassium nitrate, follow this simple steps:
  • Prepare a 1-3% solution depending on the condition of the tree.
  • Spray the leaves and branches totally wetting but not dripping.
  • Spray early in the morning (from sunrise to 9:00 am) or late in the afternoon (from 4:00 pm to 5:00 pm). This prevents leaf burning due to sunlight.

Water Management

For young mango trees, weekly manual watering should be done during dry months by saturating the soil with enough water followed by mulching. If drip irrigation is available, fertilizer application can be incorporated in the irrigation water.

For flowering trees, apply water weekly during flower initiation and fruit development and stop one month before harvest. Irrigate developing flowers and fruits to enhance fast development, minimize fruit drop and increase fruit size. The volume of water ranges from 60 to 100 liters per tree depending on size.

Pest Management

Fruit Protection

  • Minimizes incidence of fruit fly and other fruit insects
  • Minimizes disease (fungal) infection
  • Reduces incidence of mechanical damage
  • Paper used serves as absorbent for latex flow during harvest
  • Results to cleaner fruit skin and more attractive light green color
  • Provides an estimate of harvestable fruits per tree

In general, bagging is recommended to protect fruits from pests and to reduce spraying of insecticides. This practice is done when fruits are about chicken's egg size (55 to 60 days after flower induction)

Insect Pests

• Mango leaf hopper

Damage: Sucking of plant sap causes withering and drying of tender shoots, flowers and very young fruits. In the process, insect secretes sticky fluids (honeydew) that promotes development of sooty mold, fungal disease.

Control: Spray recommended chemicals starting from flower/bud formation to fruit setting. Confidor is effective against hoppers.

• Mango tip borer

Damage: Shoots wilt and terminal parts die. If infested, panicles break and the flowers shed off.

Control: Prune dead branches to discourage spread of insect. Burn parts that are affected. Since the adults start to destroy the flowers from the bud emergence to elongation, it is necessary to spray insecticides to protect these stages especially during hit months. Insecticides used for mango hopper control are also recommended for tip borer.

• Twig cutters

Damage: This is very destructive during the dry season. When present, the number of flowers that will be formed is reduced. The most visible indication of the problem is the presence of dead twigs and leaves in the canopy.

Control: Pruning and burning e dead branches to discourage spread of insect. Protect flushes from adults by spray application of insecticide.

• Pulp weevil

Damage: This is a unique pest since the larvae of the insect feed inside the fruit and destroy the pulp, yet the peel has no visible damage even up to harvest. The insect is present only in some parts of Palawan.

Control: Pruning of crowded mango trees allowing light to penetrate in the canopy is unfavorable to the weevil. Dead or overcrowding branches should be removed.

Keep each tree free from weeds, fallen leaves, fruit droppings and other debris. Cultivation of soil is advantageous since this exposes and kills the weevil hidden in the soil after harvest. Burn infested fruits to eliminate sources of infestation during the next fruiting season.

For chemical control, Cypermethrin at 50 ml/100 li water provides good protection against the weevil. Fenvalerate and Carbaryl are also effective against the pest. The insecticide should be applied at 14 days interval from fruit set to full development of the fruit

Note: Insecticides are not effective once the pest is inside the fruit.

• Mango fruit fly

Damage: Adults lay eggs on mature fruits and larvae feed on the flesh. Affected fruits drop to the grown and are easily contaminated by microorganisms.

Control: Bagging, collection and proper disposal of fallen fruits and harvest at the proper stage of maturity. If chemicals have to be used, spray at 90 or 110 days after induction.

• Mealy bugs

Damage: Attack newly-flushed leaves, flowers and fruits and suck vital plant saps. Affected parts turn yellow, dry up and eventually fall.

Control: Removal of infested fruits, flowers and leaves. Spray insecticides to kill ants associated with mealy bug.

• Capsid bug

Damage: Attacks young leaves, twigs and fruits. Saliva of the insect is very toxic and the site of the puncture is marked by sunken blister. The lesions turn brown after 24 hoursbecoming black and scabby in 2-3 days. Infected young fruits fall prematurely. Locally, the damage is called 'kurikong' or 'armalite' or 'buti'.

Control: Prune trees before induction, underbrushing areas around the tree, spray insecticide late in the afternoon and remove alternate hosts like cashew, guava and cacao.

• Mango cecid fly

Damage: Adults, which are mosquito-like in appearance, lay eggs on new flushes. The larvae mine the leaves producing galls or swelling of tissues. Heavy infestation results to wrinkling of the leaves; the leaves remain yellow in color. Close examination of the leaves shows dark green, circular galls randomly distributed on the leaf blade.

Control: Prune or cut infested leaves and burn. Practice orchard sanitation. Underbrush weedy areas since adults stay in these areas.

Spray either Sevin, Decis, Karate or Stingray (3-4 tbsp per 16 liters water) to minimize damage.

• Scale insect

Damage: In nurseries, leaves of grafted mangoes are readily infested with scale insects, causing them to dry and fall. On bearing trees, high populations of the insect cause blackening of canopy due to the growth of the fungus 'sooty mold'. Affected leaves become covered with thin, black papery film which produces unsightly appearance. In addition, affected branches are deformed producing gall like protruberances.

Control: Young scale insects are carried and distributed by red ants to different parts of the tree. To prevent infestation, destroy ants by spraying Malathion at 1 ½ tbsp per 16 liters water, Decis at 1-5 tbsp per 16 liters water or Karate at ¾ - 1 ½ tbsp per 16 liters water.

Prune and burn heavily infested plant parts like branches and leaves. This should be followed by spray application of insecticides recommended for this pest and application of high dose of nitrogen.

Important Diseases

• Anthracnose

Damage: This is the most prevalent and destructive disease of mango both in the field and after harvest. Symptoms are exhibited not only on the fruits bust also on flowers and leaves.

Prevention and Control:

  • Field sanitation
  • Prune infected branches, burn them and bury the trash
  • Schedule flower induction after the rainy season or during the dry months
  • Include insecticide and fungicide when spraying flower inducer
  • Wrap the fruits 50-60 days after flowering to protect them from pests and diseases.
  • After harvest, practice hot water treatment
  • Stem end rot

Damage: This is another post-harvest disease of mango and appears during storage and transit. The disease occurs only in ripened fruits.

Control Measures:

  • During harvest, leave one centimeter pedicel attached to the fruit to avoid too much latex staining. The casual organism germinates and grows in the presence of latex.
  • Pack mangoes in boxes of two layers to avoid injury due to compaction
  • Do not use organic materials during packing

• Scab

Damage: The disease occurs in nurseries and during moist weather. Damage occurs while fruit is still green

Control Measures: The methods of control are similar to that of anthracnose. However, scab is effectively controlled using copper fungicide.

• Gummosis

Damage: This fungal disease causes stem bleeding, crown and root rot. Infection may start during the seedling stage and may appear during both dry and wet season.

Control Measures:

  • Plant in well-drained soil.
  • Disinfect nursery sites before planting with methyl bromide, Chloropictin or other fungicides
  • Avoid too close planting to allow aeration and ventilation.
  • Remove dirt, weeds or trash
  • Avoid dumpy soils for long duration at the base of the trees.
  • Cultivation to aerate the soil is necessary to reduce fungal infection
  • Prune crowded branches
  • Foliar spray of ethyl phosphate metaxyl ot prosethal at 2g per liter water every 80 days
  • Drench infected parts, exposed damage and cover with slurry of fungicide

• Sooty mold

Damage: The causal organism (fungus) develops in the presence of honeydew excreted by insects like hoppers, scales and mealy bugs. As such, it stains the fruits and makes them look dirty and unattractive.

Control Measures: Spray insecticide to kill hopper, scales and mealy bugs. Bag fruits at 60 DAFI.

Integrated Pest Management

This involves the following practices:

  • Planting of healthy seedlings.
  • Proper land preparation and cultivation. This includes clearing and removal of infected plant residues in the field and exposing the soil to direct sunlight. This will help eliminate soil-borne pathogens.
  • Proper irrigation and drainage to avoid water logging and reduce water-borne diseases.
  • Correct distance of planting and row orientation. This will allow maximum sunlight penetration, aeration and ease of farm operations such as pest and disease control, cultivation, plowing, smudging, fertilizer application, harvesting, etc.
  • Introduction and maintenance of natural enemies and other biological control methods like entomophagous fungi against mango hoppers. Intercropping with trees that can repel harmful insects and serve as wind breaks.
  • Application of recommended fertilizers and soil conditioners, maintain the right pH of 6-7.
  • Practice of clean and sanitary culture. This includes pruning, weeding, thinning, cultivation and burning of infested debris.
  • Using insecticides and fungicides derived from plant extracts like neem, china berry and custard apple.
  • Use of baits and light traps for fruit pest (fruit fly and borers).
  • Monitoring of pest population and application of pesticide only when necessary.
  • Combine cultural, biological and chemical means to minimize pests.

Harvest Management

The following are the indications that mango fruits are ready for harvesting:

  • At 110 days (for very warm and dry environment), 120 days (warm climate) and 130 days (cool and high elevation) after flower initiation;
  • When the flesh is turning yellow;
  • When powdery deposit or "bloom" on the surface of the skin is detected;
  • When fruit has flattened shoulders at the stem end; or
  • When the pedicels of fruits turn dark green to brown in color;
  • 75% mature fruit samples sink when submerged in 1% salt solution
  • Harvesting by hand is the most effective way in order to avoid bruises or damage of the fruits. The best time to harvest is between 9:00 am and 3:00 pm since the tree and fruits are dry and the latex flow is minimal. Harvest with pedicel intact (1.5-2.0cm).
  • Trim off pedicels and let the latex dry before packing.

Post-Harvest Treatments

In order to sell quality fruits, the following post-harvest treatments are practiced:

  • Washing of fruits in water - To remove dirt on the surface.
  • Hot water treatment - This involves heating dipping the fruits for 5 to 10 minutes in heated water (52-55°C). This is followed by hydro-cooling (washing in cool water) and air drying.
  • Vapor Heat Treatment (VHT) - This involves heating the fruit with water vapor saturated air until the fruit pulp reaches 46°C for 10 minutes.

Ripening of Fruits

Fully mature fruits may be induced to ripen faster and with uniform color. There are two ways to do this:

  • Use of calcium carbide ('kalburo') at the rate of 5 to 6 grams per kilo of fruit. This is done by wrapping the calcium carbide in paper or leaves and placed at the bottom of the container. The container should be covered for 2 to 3 days. For best result, allow fruits to produce yellow color and place 'kalburo'.
  • Use of ethylene gas or ethyl water solution. The use of ethylene gas involves a chamber while in ethyl solution; the fruits are simply dipped in the solution.

Mango Processing Technologies

Being a perishable commodity, mango is processed in various forms to:

  • Protect it from chemical deterioration and microbial contamination
  • Provide additional income
  • Ensure adequate and continuous supply of mango products the whole year round

 Source: Department of Agriculture, Date accessed 24 March 2014




Mangosteen (Garcinia mangostana Linn of the family Gutiiferae) popularly known as the "queen of tropical fruits" is one of the most delicious and best flavored fruits in the world. It is one tropical fruit that is most ready accepted by the Western. It is a seasonal fruit that has a great domestic and export the world.
(Source: Bureau of Agricultural Research, Date accessed 24 March 2014)

For further assistance in your area, you may check the Technical and Financial Assistance Directory.


Cultural Management


Favorable Growing Conditions

Mangosteen thrives best in warm, humid environment. Ideal temperature is 20°C-30°C. A temperature of less than 20°C slows down growth. Ideally, rainfall should be well distributed throughout the year, but trees are known to grow successfully even under dry conditions with irrigation. The soil should be rich, porous, deep and wet but well drained. Heavy clay with a generous admixture of sand and silt, and a water table of about two meters are best. It also grows well up to an elevation of zero to 500 meters. The tree also thrives well along river banks, canals, ponds and lakes. It grows best in areas with a well distributed rainfall.


Seed System

Seeds are sown in seed boxes, seed flats or pots, bamboo tubes or plastic bags, under a cover. In a week or two, the seeds sprout and the seedlings are to be kept in a nursery under partial shade and watered 3 to 4 times a week. Usually, the seedlings take about two years to become large enough for transplanting to a permanent field. At this stage, the plants are about 30 cm tall.


Land Preparation

Before planting, condition the land and make it fit for the reception of the trees. In clearing, all tree stumps should be removed along with as many roots as possible. If a mangosteen orchard is to be established, land preparation follows the system for other fruit crops. This consists of deep plowing once and twice, followed by several harrowings, until the desired soil tilth is attained. Stakes are set at a distance of 8-10m corresponding to the recommended distance of planting for mangosteen. Holes are then dug at the positions occupied by the stakes where mangosteen seedlings are set and covered with soil.


Crop Establishment

Planting system and distance of planting

Mangosteen seedlings are ready to be transplanted to the field when they are two years old, at which age, they are about 25-30 cm tall. The seedlings are to be carefully removed from the containers and set in the holes to avoid disturbing the root system. The most suitable period to transplant is just after the rainy season has set in. Planting in an area where there are light shimmers is very helpful in ensuring satisfactory establishment of the young plants.

On level land, the trees are planted using the square system: spacing of at least 8m x 8m between rows and between trees in a row. Some 156 seedlings to a hectare are needed. The size of the holes should be 0.6m x 0.6m x 0.6m and filed with farm manure. Plants are then set out at the center of the hole. Gradually fill-in the hole with loose top soil. Gently press the soil until it firmly grips the plant.

Weeding and Cultivation

Ring-weeding at one meter radius and loosening the earth are practiced to preserve the fertility of the soil, as well as to allow the development of the plants. Areas between rows are plowed for better weed control and cultivation.

Intercropping and Cover Cropping

Planting intercrops and cover crops in the mangosteen orchard is more or less confined to the early years because, as the trees develop in size and status, not much unshaded space is left in between rows for their proper growth.

Mangosteen, in Sulu Archipelago, is usually planted with intercrops or peanut and other leguminous field crops, or with companion plants like abaca and banana, or marang and lansones trees. Other crops that may be intercropped also are "dapdap" or durian trees which can serve as partial shades.


Nutrient Management

Mangosteen trees respond well to manuring. Diluted organic fertilizer which can be absorbed slowly is desirable.

Also, application of a nitrogenous fertilizer can accelerate vegetative growth of the plants.

Fertilizer application varies with the age of the plant. Since ammonium sulfate is applied at planting time, succeeding application should follow a circular outline following the tree's canopy. Dig 4 to 6 holes following the circular plan on the ground. Put the fertilizer into the holes, cover to prevent volatilization, and to reduce runoff in case of heavy rains.

At planting time, apply 200-250 grams complete fertilizer per tree three inches below the roots and five inches at the side of the seeding. For young trees, mix and apply in two equal dosages 300-500 grams 14-14-14 or 12-24-12 and broadcast or apply, by digging a shallow furrow around each tree, 200-300 grams urea (45-0-0). Apply the first dosage at the start of the rainy season and the second dosage at the end of the rainy season.

During the fruit-bearing stage, mix then apply in two equal doses 1.5 to 3.0 kg 14-14-14 or 12-24-12 plus 200-300 grams Muriate of Potash (0-0-60). Apply in same manner as that for young trees.

Gradually increase the amount of fertilizer every year as the trees grow bigger and as fruit production increases.


Water Management

Artificial irrigation is practiced during dry months. Water the plants as soon as they are transplanted and sustain during the times when precitation is not adequate in order to keep the soil moisture at a high level.

In the seedling stage, however, standing water over the roots can kill the plant outright.


Pest Management

Mangosteen is subject to several pests, the most common of which are mites, aphids, fructifier ants and mealy bugs. Others, such as tussock caterpillars feed on the leaves while coconut scales form colonies underneath the leaves which causes leaf yellowing in patches thus impairing plant growth.

Occasionally, sooty molds are found covering the leaves. Diseases due to anthracnose and bacterial leaf sheath have also been reported. As a preventive measure, the plants may be sprayed two four time a year with common fungicides at dosages recommended. Read the label before application.


Harvest Management

Mangosteen usually flowers in 10 to 15 years but if given proper care, asexually propagated trees bear fruit in eight to nine years. It takes about five to six months from flowering stage to fruit ripening.

Harvesting is normally done from the month of August to October. The fruit is mature when its color changes from greenish brown to reddish purple and when it is rather soft to the touch.

Great care must be practiced when harvesting fruits. Be sure that the fruits are mature at harvest time, otherwise, they may fail to develop an excellent flavor.

Handle the fruits with great care while harvesting. Handpicking is a good method since the pericarp, which is still slightly soft at harvest is easily subjected to injury when the fruits fall. As an alternative method use a long pole with a hook at the tip and a catching basket attached at the end where the fruits will be collected.

The method of harvesting employed in Sulu is hand picking the fruit with its preduncle intact. Fruits are then bound together in elongated clusters of 15 pieces.


Source: Bureau of Agricultural Research, Date accessed 24 March 2014




Milkfish (Chanos chanos) locally known as bangus is the sole living species in the family Chanidae. It is considered as the backbone of the Philippine aquaculture industry. It contributes significantly to the country's overall aquaculture fish production.

Milkfish has a generally symmetrical and streamlined appearance, with a sizeable forked caudal fin. It can grow to 1.7 meters (6 ft.) but is most often about 1 meter (39 in.) in length. It has no teeth and generally feeds on algae and invertebrates. Among the fresh fish food groups, bangus production ranks third to tuna and round scad. (Source: Agriculture and Fisheries Market Information System (AFMIS), Date accessed 24 March 2014)

For Prices and Market trends, you may visit the Agriculture and Fisheries Market Information System.

For Cost and Returns, you may visit the Bureau of Agricultural Statistics.

For further assistance in your area, you may check the Technical and Financial Assistance Directory.

Cultural Management


Site Selection

Select existing brackish water fish farms that are fully developed and operational. Former prawn farms can be used for milkfish farming. The site should have: high tidal range and can hold water at least one meter deep; good water quality and more or less have constant salinity and temperature throughout the year; longer dry season, sandy clay loam, silty clay loam; and access to roads and power supply.

Pond Layout


1. Improve or modify existing structures to suit the management requirements of the proposed production scheme.
2. Concentrate on the repair and strengthening of dikes, cut-and-fill leveling of pond bottom, and construction of diagonal canal, drain canal and drain culvert gate to improve pond structures.
3. Modify pond structures to improve water management and stock manipulation systems as well as to meet desired management schedules and production targets. The pond can be of any size (the bigger, the better) for optimum production using the modular method.
4. Divide pond into four compartments: nursery pond (NP); transition pond (TP); formation pond (FP); and rearing pond (RP).
5. Provide a separate culvert-type drain gate and canal system opposite the inlet gate and canal system for rearing ponds to effect efficient water exchange and circulation.
6. Construct an inside-pond diagonal canal to facilitate draining and harvesting of stock.

Pond Preparation and Food Requirements

1. Carry out thorough pond preparation such as crack drying, liming and tilling once a year.
2. Prepare the ponds grown with lab-lab before fish stocking.
3. Apply organic and inorganic fertilizer to stimulate growth of natural food organisms.
4. Extend pond preparation and food growing in grow-out ponds to 45 days to allow more time for the abundant growth of lab-lab

Cumulative days for completion of activities

1 Pond draining, soil sealing, leveling and repair
2-7 Pond drying
2 Gate screening
2 Pest predator control
2 Liming (optional for low pH)
7 Washing
8 Organic fertilization (2 tons/ha)
8 First water intake, 5 cm
8-17 Evaporation
11 Inorganic fertilization 3 sacks/ha 21-0-0
18 Second water intake, 10 cm
18 Fertilizer dressing, 25 kg/ha 16-20-0
25 Third water intake, 15 cm
25 Fertilizer dressing, 25 kg/ha 46-0-0
32 Fourth water intake, 20 cm.
36 Fertilizer dressing, 25 kg/ha 16-20-0
39 Sixth water intake, 25 cm
39 Fertilizer dressing, 25 kg/ha 16-20-0
45 Sixth water intake, 30 cm
46 Fish stock

Ponds Water Management

1. Increase water depth from 0.6 m to 1 m particularly during the last two months of culture operation. Note: An abrubt increase in water depth will cause lab-lab to detach and float. Install fine-meshed screens (bastidor or lumpot) at the gates to prevent the re-entry of wild species or the possible escape of stock.
2. Monitor water quality parameters (turbidity, salinity, dissolved oxygen, temperature regularly to check for any sign of risk. Maintain the optimum water condition to support maximum growth of milkfish.
3. Change water at least every two weeks or as frequent as possible.
Install a stand-by water pump to maintain desired water depth when water management through tidal fluctuation is not possible.

Do's and Don'ts in setting up and managing a fish pond.

1. Avoid areas with problems of domestic, industrial, or agricultural pollution.
2. Ensure sufficient supply of clean water.
3. Put up independent water supply.
4. Apply complete drying, and if indicated, liming of sediments.
5. Always stock good quality fingerlings.
6. Practice right stocking density according to management capability and environmental conditions.
7. Maintain high quality water supply.
8. Always ensure sufficient water exchange.
9. Avoid adding large volumes of new water that may contain pollutants (setting of water in reservoir before use can improve its quality).
10. Set regular water quality monitoring (e.g., turbidity, water color, dissolved oxygen, pH and temperature) activities.
11. Anticipate adverse weather conditions. Sudden rain or thumderstorms during hot day may present dangers as well as sudden changes in water temperature which may also result in some fish kills.
12. Observe extra precaution to minimize the possibility of dike wash-out flooding and the like.
13. Apply controlled feeding and feed fish only with high quality food.
14. Monitor survival rate, biomass, growth and health.
15. Quarantine new stock.


Harvesting milkfish that have attained the marketable size can be done either through the current method locally called as pasubang or the total draining method. Total draining is the common method for harvesting milkfish. However, this lowers the quality of the fish because mud sticks to the fish.
To maintain fish quality, the pasubang method can be used. This takes advantage of the tendency of the fish to swim against the current. The method is carried out by draining water in the pond particularly during low tide to induce fish to swim through the gate.
Close the gate when all the fish have been impounded. Total harvest is done manually by collecting or picking the remaining fish from the pond bottom.

Packing for Transport

Part of the business is transporting the goods to the market. To ensure that fish will remain fresh until they reach their destination, they must be packed with sufficient quantity of ice and loaded with care.

Methods of packing fresh fish for transport

1. Wash the fish with pond water prior to icing and sort according to size.
2. Pre-chill or immerse the fish in a chilling tank, box or banyera with ice water immediately after harvest.
3. Dip the fish in ice water before packing to keep them from losing scales due to subsequent handling.
4. Spread a layer of crushed ice 15 cm thick at the bottom of the transport box. Make sure the ice is compact to minimize thawing and to cushion the fish.
5. Lay about 100 kg of the fish on top of the crushed ice. Arrange the fish heads pointing to the one direction only.
6. Spread another layer of crushed ice 5 cm thick on top of the fish.
7. Repeat steps 2 and 3 until the last layer of fish is 15 cm below the top of the box.
8. Place the last layer of crushed ice 15 cm thick on top of the last layer of fish. The bottom and the top layers of ice should always be 15 cm thick.

Note: If the fish will be transported by land, a 1:2 ratio of ice to fish (weight basis) is needed for 1 1/2 hours of travel, and a 1:1 ratio for 3 hours of travel. However, if transporting by boat or ship, do not remove fish from the styrofoam boxes. The fish can stay fresh in a styrofoam box for 12 hours.

Advantages of pre-chilling

Pre-chilling the fish will prevent excessive damage and will keep the fish looking fresh. It also removes blood, slime, dirt and bacteria from the skin of the fish, and slows down enzymatic activities, thus minimizing further deterioration.

Ecological considerations

If not properly planned or managed, fishponds may adversely affect the environment, e.g. by causing water pollution. To mitigate such problems, adopt appropriate safeguards to protect the environment. Likewise, avoid pond development in environmentally critical areas such as mangrove areas, marine parks, and reserves, and sanctuaries. If possible, use teased cake/powder instead of strong chemicals in controlling pests and predators in fishponds. If chemical pesticide is used, count five to seven days before flushing pond water into the river to avoid polluting the river and poisoning other aquatic organisms. Furthermore, avoid overfeeding the fish with commercial feeds. Decaying uneaten feeds can pollute water and pond environment.

Plant mangroves or other trees on the dikes to strengthen them and to avoid erosion. Dikes can also be planted to cash crops, e.g. string beans, kamote, okra, and peppers.

Source: Agriculture and Fisheries Market Information System (AFMIS), Date accessed 24 March 2014




Mungbean (Vigna radiata L. Wilzeck), popularly known in the Philippines as mungo or mungbean in other countries and mainly used as human food. It is one of the cheapest sources of plant protein which contains protein ranging from 22-27%. It is also a good source of minerals such as calcium and sodium. Dried mungbean seeds are high in vitamins A & B while the sprouted mungbean are rich in vitamins B & C. (Source: Bureau of Agricultural Research, Date accessed 24 March 2014)

For Cost and Returns, you may visit the Bureau of Agricultural Statistics.

For further assistance in your area, you may check the Technical and Financial Assistance Directory.

Cultural Management

Climate Requirements

Mungbean is drought-tolerant and requires a warm climate during its growing period. The temperature and humidity prevailing in the region is suited for optimum yields.

Crop Establishment


Just after harvesting rice:

Flush irrigate the area and drain excess water

Broadcast evenly the mungo seeds at the rate of:

30 kgs seeds/ha (90-95% germination)
35 kgs seeds/ha (80-85% germination)
37-40 seeds/ha (75-80% germination)

If rice stubbles is 10-15 cm high, lightly puddle with mini tractor-drawn the area to help seeds in the stubbles get in contact with the soil

Seed Inoculation

Inoculate the seeds prior to broadcasting with rhizobium inoculant at the rate of 5 kgs/pack of inoculant.

To inoculate the seeds; a) sprinkle/moisten the seeds with water (10 kgs:1 glass of water).

Pour the inoculants and mix evenly until seeds are well-coated.

Broadcast the inoculated seeds just after mixing.

Nutrient Management

To ensure high yield and attain 3 pod priming frequency, spray the plants with foliar fertilizer (high in potassium and phosphorous content) at 25-30 DAP and after 1st and 2nd priming.

Foliar fertilizer spraying can be mixed with compatible insecticides.

Pest Management

3-5 days after seed emergence, spray the plants with appropriate insecticides to control bean fly (wilting and presence of pin-holes in leaves at seedling stage are common symptoms).

If high population of weeds (particularly grass) are outgrowing the plants, spray selective post-emergence herbicide like ONECIDE.

Control leaf folder and pod borer by spraying contact insecticide at vegetative stage (10-15 days after planting (DAP), flowering stage (20-30 DAP) and every after pod priming.

Control powdery mildew and Cercospora leaf spot disease with appropriate fungicides starting flowering stage.
Rogue/uproot and burn mosaic-infected plants to avoid spread of virus diseases

Harvest Management

Handpicking (or priming) mature (black) pods in the early morning or late afternoon to minimize shattering. Priming is done up to five times depending on the maturity of the pods. In some part of Pampanga, the farmers cut the plants at one time when most of the pods have matured. Attain three primings and harvest at 1-week interval.

Sun-drying & Threshing

Freshly harvested pods are sundried on concrete pavement or on the ground with mat; pods are threshed by beating or trampling on dried pods. Manual threshing can be done but the use of mechanical rice-thresher can speed- up the operation and reduce expenses


It is done by sieving or winnowing the threshed pods.


Use of nylon or jute sacks, cans (covered air-tight) and empty cement sacks and stored inside the house or storehouse.
Cool overnight the seeds before keeping in storage cans.
Mix the seeds with dried neem tree seeds/leaves, hot pepper (siling labuyo), naphthalene balls, etc.


Mungbean harvested in the Ilocos region are sold in Urdaneta, Villasis and nearby towns in Pangasinan

Product Utilization

Mungbean is prepared by cooking or milling. IT is eaten whole or split. The seeds or flour may enter a variety of dishes such as sopus, porridge, snacks, bread, noodles and ice cream. It is a raw material use in the processing of noodles locally known as "sotanghon"

 Source: Bureau of Agricultural Research, Date accessed 25 March 2014




Scylla serrata is the common mudcrab occurring in the estuarine and mangrove areas and is commonly called as "red crab" and it prefers to live in low saline waters. Male crabs of S. serrata grow to 700 to 800 gm at the maximum The export size of the crab is 500 g and above for males and 250 g and above for females.

Crab fattening is widely practiced in Thailand, Taiwan, Malaysia, Singapore and Indonesia. Gravid female mud crabs with full orange-red egg masses are in great demand in seafood restaurants of South East Asian countries. Due to its high price, people started to hold immature female crabs in some kind of enclosures and fed them until the gonads developed and filled the mantle cavity. This is how crab "fattening" spread, initially, throughout South East Asian countries. Subsequently, the practice of holding post-moult "water" crab of market size, in some enclosures, for short period of time and feeding them until they completely "flesh out" for getting quick returns also became popular. Cages, pens and small ponds with net are being used for holding crabs for a short period of 3-4 weeks.
(Source: Bureau of Agricultural Research, Date accessed 25 March 2014)

For further assistance in your area, you may check the Technical and Financial Assistance Directory.

Cultural Management



This is the process of stocking juvenile crabs (10 g to 250 g) and allowing them to moult and grow. Harvest is done after 3-8 months or once the crab reaches 400 g to 500 g size. Mud crab fattening is the most suitable method for small-scale aquaculture because:
Turnover is fast, hence, the period between investment and returns is short.
Fattened crabs can be stocked at higher densities (15 crabs/sq m) compared to grow-out systems (1 crab/sq m) as no molting occurs and therefore losses due to cannibalism are dramatically reduced.
Short production time reduces the risk of losing crabs to disease, thus, rendering a higher survival rate for fattening (>90%) compared to grow-out systems (40%).

Different Methods of Crab Culture

Four methods of oyster culture are practised in the Philippines; broadcast (sabong), stake (tulos), lattice and hanging (bitin, sampayan, horizontal, and tray) methods

Pen Culture in Ponds


Several units of pens of 4 X 4 X 2.5 m could be made inside the ponds using bamboo strips which are driven 1-1.5 m deep into the soil to prevent the escape of the crabs by burrowing. The pens could be made nearer to the dykes for easy stocking and monitoring.





Pond Culture in Mangrove Areas.


The ponds could be constructed as described above around the mangrove plants. But a maximum pond area of 100 Sq. meters is suitable for this type of culture. A canal of 1 m wide and 0.5 m deep, in which water will be available even during low tide, should be dug around the edge of the pond. The center of the pond forms a raised platform with mangrove vegetation, which the crabs would use as a refuge during low tide. Water exchange could be tidally controlled. Polythene nettings could be used to prevent the escape of the crabs. Feeding depends on the availability of organisms namely low-value fishes, mangrove snails, clams, mussels, etc.



Pen Culture in Mangrove Areas


The pens could be constructed using the locally available bamboo splits or arecanut logs or cane. These strips should be driven 1-1.5 m deep into the soil to keep the crabs inside and the potential predators outside. The manageable area of the pen could be 100 to 150Sq. m. Within the pen, a ditch of about 0.3 to 0.9 m wide and 0.3 m deep should be dug. Mangrove trees in the centre of the pen provide shade for the crabs. Roughly 1000 to1500 crabs of 100 g each could be stocked per pen. The stocking should be continuous. The crab could be fed once a day during high tide with low-cost fishes, mussels, clams, snails, etc. The crabs could be harvested after 4 – 7 months. The crabs could be selectively harvested after they reach 400g or more. Although this system is eco-friendly, survival rate of only 47 to 50 % could be expected. The loss could be mainly due to cannibalism, and escape of crabs. Lower stocking density is suggested to be a remedy for the low survival rate.


Cage Culture (suspended or fixed type)

Cage design

Crab fattening can be carried out in Cell-type Cane Cages of 1m (L) X 1m (W) X 20 cm(H) size, which can be partitioned into nine equal compartments. Each of these cages should be provided with a lid to prevent the escape of crabs. A gap of 5 mm is to be provided between the canes at the top and 2.5 cm at the sides of the cages to enable free movement of water through the cages. But, no gap should be provided at the bottom to enable easy movement of the crabs.

Stocking and feeding in cages


One crab should be placed in each compartment of the cages. In this method of fattening, higher number of crabs can be fattened in a square meter area, i.e. 9 crabs / m2. Based on the local availability, different types of feeds such as trash fish, mussel, chicken waste, clams etc. can be given to the crabs.





Deployment of cages


These cages can either be suspended from a raft deployed in bays or backwaters or mangrove areas. These cages could also be made as a fixed type in ponds, mangrove areas or coastal regions of the bays. The cages could be made without cells inside. But the survival would reduce in this method due to cannibalism.





Cage Maintenance


  1. Clean the cages as frequently as possible using brushes enabling free movement of water inside.
  2. If nails are used in the cages, use only the anodized MS/ copper / SS nails for increased longevity of cages in seawater.
  3. Repair the damages in the cages immediately when it happens.
  4. Deploy the cages where there is mild water current.
  5. If algal growth is found on the crabs, clean them using a brush.




Managing the Crab Farm

Once decided on the farming method and when the oyster spats have settled

  1. Condition ponds/pens before stocking mudcrabs. Plant Gracilaria or other macrophytes to serve as shelter for crabs. Stock crabs when luxurious growth of macrophytes is observed.
  2. To insure high survival of crab juveniles for grow-out culture while in transport, provide transport containers with fronds of mangroves. Remove chilepeds of crabs weighing less than 30g. Do not remove chilepeds of crabs weighing more than 30g but tie them firmly to prevent antagonistic behavior during transport. Frequently pour seawater into containers while in transport to keep crabs moist.
  3. Stock marketable size lean crabs for fattening culture at 2.0 crabs per sq m. Stock together male and female but remove movable part of the claw and apply Povidone-iodine (betadine) to the injured part to prevent infection. Acclimate before releasing them in ponds/pen.
  4. Stock crab juveniles (7-11g or 16-20g) at 1.5 per sq m for pond grow-out culture and 2.0 per sq m for pen (mangroves). Stock males separately from females. Stock monospecies, more or less monosize crabs. Acclimate to pond/pen water temperature and salinity before releasing them.
  5. Feed crabs with frozen or freshtrash fishor a mixed diet of 75% brown mussel meat and 25% trash fish. Feed grow-out culture crabs at 10% of the crab biomass per day when carapace length is less than 6cm and 5% when carapace length is 6cm or more. Feed fattening culture crabs at 10% of the crab biomass per day through out the culture period. Feed crabs in the grow-out or fattening culture twice per day: 60% of the daily ration at 5:00 PM and 40% at 7:00 PM.
  6. Select and remove marketable size and fat crabs several times over the grow-out culture period: 150g or more female and 200g or more for male pulang alimango; 350g or more for female and 400g or more for male giant crabs.
  7. Harvest fat crabs from fattening culture 20 days after stocking. Not all crabs fatten at the same time but expect to harvest about 50% fat crabs of your total stock. Replace harvested fat crabs with lean ones but remove the movable claw, disinfect, and acclimate them before releasing in ponds/pens. Harvest and replace every 10 days thereafter; this time you can harvest fat crabs of about 30% of your total stock. You can maintain this cycle for five months.
  8. Harvesting is done with different kinds of trap like the bamboo cage, lift net, scissors net, fish corrals and gill nets. Crabs are ready for the harvest and marketing when the piece or two reaches up to a kilo. They are sold alive and can stay out of the water even for a week. They should, however, be kept in damp containers and periodic moistening is important. Feed them with trash fish and other kitchen refuse.
  9. Handling adult crabs in captivity are tied with dried nipa strings. Both pincers are tied close to the abdominal cavity to prevent crawling. When transported, proper handling is important. Place them in baskets or tiklis to avoid getting trampled or crushed.

Pest and Disease Management

Mud crab fattening in bamboo cages is one of the technology verification studies tried out by Joey and Sylvia de la Cruz in Barangay Napapao, Ponteverdra Capiz. This project was conducted to provide a standard culture method for fattening crab:

  • Site Selection

Mud crabs grow best in brackish water, such as tidal flats, estuarine areas, bays and lagoons. Sheltered bays and coves are selected to protect the bamboo cages from strong winds and waves during adverse weather conditions. The water at such sites should be 0.5-lm deep. Areas with low salinities should be preferred, as saline water inhibits the growth of mud crab. Areas with sufficient crab for fattening as well as trash fish for feed should be considered. The area should also be accessible to the growers and target markets.

  • Cage Design

A modified bamboo cage (140 x 70 x 25 cm) subdivided into 18 compartments is fixed firmly by its comers to the substratum to prevent it from being washed away during inclement weather. The compartments are covered with 140 x 70 cm split bamboo. Holes are provided in the compartment covers for feeding.
One advantage of using bamboo cages is that selective harvesting can be done. If the desired weight has not been attained, the crab could easily be returned to their compartments and fattened further.

  • Stocking

About 18 crabs can be stocked per unit. Stocking is done during the early morning or late in the afternoon. In Capiz, 185 crabs, each of average weight 175 g. were stocked. The weight increase after 15 days was I 10 g.

  • Feed and Feeding

Mud crabs are fed twice a day at 5 per cent bodyweight for 10-15 days. Feeds may be trash fish, soft-shelled snails, kitchen leftovers, mussel meat, animal entrails or almost any other kind of food.

  • Cage Maintenance

Periodic checks should be made during the culture period. Drifting seaweed, logs and other debris should be removed to facilitate easy circulation of water and prevent damage to the cages. After use, the crab cages should be lifted periodically and dried.

  • Harvest and Handling

After the fattening period, mud crab can be harvested individually by hand. The crabs are then bound with straw or string to enable easy handling. A skilled laborer is hired to bind the pincers of the crab. Exposure of the crab to sun and wind should be avoided, as this may lead to weakening and eventual death.

Source: Bureau of Agricultural Research, Date accessed 25 March 2014

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