Manilita came from the Pacific coast of southern Mexico. It is descended from the Philippine mango variety brought from Manila, Philippines (hence the name Manilita, which means "little Manila [mango]"). This was possible through the Galleon Trade that existed between Manila and Acapulco, Mexico (1565–1815).
Manilita was introduced to the United States, where it has gained acceptance as a dooryard cultivar for home growing due to its small growth habit and fruit color. It was listed as a curator's choice mango at the Fairchild Tropical Botanic Garden's 2010 International Mango Festival in Miami, Florida, and has been promoted by Fairchild for its positive characteristics.
The fruit average less than a pound in weight at maturity and are elongated in shape similar to southeast Asian-descended cultivars. The skins turns a pastel red color, and the flesh is fiberless and sweet. In Florida, the fruit ripen early.
Trees are small and can be maintained at a height of 7 feet, lending to Manilita's labeling as a "condo mango".
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