Mangifera pentandra (PROSEA)

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Plant Resources of South-East Asia
List of species

Mangifera pentandra Hook.f.

Protologue: Fl. Brit. India 2: 14 (1876).


Mangifera lanceolata Ridley (1911).

Vernacular names

  • no generally used vernacular names, often called "mangga" or "pauh" which refers also to M. indica
  • Malaysia: mangga bemban, mempelam bemban, pauh asal, pauh damar (Peninsular)
  • Thailand: mamuang paa (central).


M. pentandra is mainly known in cultivation in old orchards in peninsular Thailand, Peninsular Malaysia, Sabah and the Anambas Islands. It is thought to occur wild in northern Peninsular Malaysia.


The wood is reputed to be used. The fruit has only a little flesh, which liquifies at maturity and can then be sucked out. More often the immature fruit is sliced and served in fruit salads with a spicy sauce ("rujak").


  • A medium-sized tree up to 28 m tall, with bole up to 90 cm in diameter, buttresses absent or very short and thick, bark surface initially smooth, later cracked, whitish.
  • Leaves oblong or elliptical, 11-25 cm × 3.5-15 cm, coriaceous, venation distinct on both surfaces, densely reticulate; leaves reddening when drying; petiole 1.5-3.5(-6)cm long.
  • Inflorescence a pseudo-terminal pyramidal panicle, 15-30 cm long, very densely pubescent but ultimately glabrescent.
  • Flowers 5-merous, petals 3-4.5 mm long, white to yellow, with 5 thick, yellow ridges confluent at base, disk large, cushion-like, 5-lobed, 3-5 stamens fertile, unequal, filaments free.
  • Fruit an oblong drupe, like a small mango, 7-10 cm × 4-5 cm, yellowish-green; flesh orange, soft and watery, with few fibres, rather sweet.
  • Stone 4-5 cm × 3-3.5 cm × 1.7-2 cm, with thick woody endocarp which is rather deeply grooved.

M. pentandra much resembles M. indica but differs in the conspicuous leaf reticulation, the densely hairy panicles and the 3-5 fertile stamens. It occurs in the lowland. The rate of fruit set is characteristically high.


The species are at home in fairly wet tropical lowlands.

Genetic resources and breeding

This species might contribute to the improvement of M. indica through breeding programmes. Crossing the heavy fruit set of M. pentandra into M. indica would be a major breakthrough. Heavy fruit set may result from more intensive pollination in species with 3-5 fertile stamens instead of a single one. Five-stamen close relatives of M. indica include Mangifera caloneura Kurz and Mangifera cochinchinensis Engl., which occur in mainland South-East Asia.


It is to be expected that this species will continue to lose ground to the common mango. Its main role may lie in the hybridization of the mango.


  • Ding Hou, 1978. Anacardiaceae. In: van Steenis, C.G.G.J. (Editor): Flora Malesiana. Series 1. Vol. 8. pp. 426-428.
  • Mukherjee, S.K., 1949. A monograph of the genus Mangifera L. Lloydia 12: 73-136.
  • Fairchild, D., 1948. The mango relatives of Cochinchina; those with five-stamen flowers. Florida State Horticultural Society 61: 250-255.

104, 162, 328, 673, 705. timbers


J.M. Bompard