Ok, so my cousins had come over.sweet kids of 8 and 9. I was just showing them around my garden.And earlier in the day, we had some mangoes, and I had showed them how to take the seed out of the tough outer shell. Both of them had a seed each ,I put mine in the wet-paper towel-in ziplock bag experiment. We were searching for a spot in the garden, and started digging some soil and placing the seed there.Finished off by pouring some water.

Then I just wanted to show them how the seed grows.So I had dug out some mud from my pot where I had placed a seed 20 days ago.And we got to the seed.My cousins peeped in and said they wanted to see the whole thing. I was sceptical, and honestly thought the seed is dead or something- since the plant had not come up yet and I had lost hope in it. So I dug it some more , and the seed seemed stuck or too tight to come out.I used my fingers to just move the mud aside, and holy cow I saw a strong root going down ! I was so happy!

But then it had been just 20 days , so I thought the root might not be lengthy. I was trying to chisel the seed out with my hand ,my cousins helped me push the mud out of the way.By then there were three hands in the pot, and I tried to be careful but my hand slightly shifted and, Oh dear god, the root BROKE!just like that!

I took the seed out and the broken root. It was 2 inches approx long!. But the seed still has an inch and a half of strong root attached to it.The cut end had some kind of rootlings coming out of it,tiny <1mm kind of light greenish white tubes( I don't know how else to describe it!) radially popping out.

I have planted the seed back into the mud and took away the broken root as a souvenir. Is there any chance that the seed will grow a new root?

Can I do anything with the broken root? right now its inside a pot, But will it grow?I know that's silly , but still, does the broken root do any good?

EDIT 1: just made my sentence construction better.

  • I LOVE this...where is it that you live? Hawaii? Similar? Grin! If you grow ANYTHING in a pot, do not use garden soil!! You are making a controlled environment and using soil from outside you have absolutely no idea of what it is composed. Use sterilized bagged potting soil!! No rock or gravel "for drainage"...IF you don't live in a subtropical/tropical zone this will grow somewhat (like an avocado) on the porch and indoors during the winter. Create a good environment for this seed, it MIGHT make it, or begin again. Super for kids as well as YOU, Kick-ass Girl!!
    – stormy
    Commented Jul 11, 2015 at 19:31
  • Live in India. Weather here is tropical.I use Laterite soil (which is commonly available at the local farmer's market), and mix it with compost in a 50-50 proportion.Right now it has grown pretty well.Pretty quickly rather.It has a thick stem coming up , with 4 baby leaves.Its growing pretty well.I'm so happy! :) Commented Jul 17, 2015 at 13:58
  • Very cool. Plants WANT to survive. They humble and amaze me every day.
    – stormy
    Commented Jul 18, 2015 at 20:01

1 Answer 1


No, the broken root won't regrow - the part which produces topgrowth has now gone, so it has no 'instructions' as to how to proceed - this information comes from the actual seed or stone. I'm not sure if you're saying the tiny rootlets spreading out radially were on the now detached piece of root, leaving the original seed with just a root and no rootlets. If you are, there's slightly less chance your mango will continue to grow, since its been interrupted at a critical stage - but it might recover well, so its worth taking care of the one you've replanted in terms of water particularly.

It's a valuable lesson though - for a plant to start showing green growth from a large seed or stone, its already grown root/s below ground, or it wouldn't be sprouting in this way. If you've ever seen a conker which has started growing the spring after falling to the ground, you'll first notice the topgrowth, usually about 4 inches tall - if you dig that up, it has a very long root with rootlets already present, much longer than the topgrowth. Root initiation and development with large seeds starts before green topgrowth appears, basically, though some plants are quicker to produce topgrowth than others.


You've said there were rootlets present still on the seed end of the broken root - it should be fine, assuming it doesn't suffer drought. I guess you know that mangoes don't come true from seed - it'll be interesting to see how big it gets and whether it produces good mangoes or not very nice ones, though fruiting will be some years away.

  • the rootlets are coming out radially on the cross section of the cut end on both -the still existing root (on the seed) as well as the broken root. Commented Jul 11, 2015 at 12:39
  • I live in south of India.tropical climate. But now its pretty hot humid and sunny.Should I be bothered about the time I leave this plant in the sun.I mean the top growth hasn't come yet. And the pot gets slightly warm by 6:30 pm,when the sun goes down. Should I be worried about the temperature in which the now sensitive root, must grow ? Commented Jul 11, 2015 at 12:46
  • If it's in a pot, just make sure it gets enough water. The heat is helpful to its root formation, but its probably best to keep it somewhere out of the sun during the hottest part of the day, usually between 11 and 3 pm, so any topgrowth which appears doesn't get frazzled or fried by the sun.
    – Bamboo
    Commented Jul 11, 2015 at 12:49

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