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Updated: March 17, 2014 18:38 IST

Mango masti

PREMA VEERARAGHAVAN
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The flowers face upwards while the mango fruit faces downward. Photo: Ch.Vijaya Bhaskar
The Hindu
The flowers face upwards while the mango fruit faces downward. Photo: Ch.Vijaya Bhaskar

Observe the mango tree, now that summer is round the corner.

Have you have planned your summer vacation? The mango tree has!

See how the mango trees are preparing to help you to face the summer. Stop awhile and observe the changes. See the tiny white flowers. Notice that each bunch looks like a cone, the flowers at the base are held by longer stalks than the ones at the apex. This arrangement is important as pollinating insects can move freely. Despite the numerous flowers only a few withstand the weather conditions.

Watch it grow

The flowers face upwards while the mango fruit faces downward. The flower stalk makes a 180 turn when changing from flower to fruit. Mangoes will be hidden among the leaves and this protects them from the sun’s heat.

This summer make sure you enjoy fresh mango juice. You can also preserve mangoes by drying it in the sun. This can be used for future use such as pickles, mango pulp and so on.

What you can do

- Pick up a fallen flower.

- With the help of your teacher separate the flower into sepals,petals, stamens and pistil.

- Use a hand lens to observe the pistil.

- This insignificant small base of the pistil becomes a mango.

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Illustration: Sreejith R. Kumar

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