Mangos are a tropical fruit and grow best in a warm, humid climate. Most mangos are grown and eaten in India. However, they are now grown in may other places. Some of the best areas for growing mangos are southern Mexico, Panama, Jamaica, Trinidad, Thailand and throughout much of Asia. The southern part of the state of Florida in the United States also has a good climate for mangos.
A few types of mango are ready to eat before the others, such as the "Rosigold," which ripen in late March. Most varieties ripen in June and July with a few late bloomers that produce fruit into August.
Some varieties of mangos grown in Mexico include the "Manilita" which is ready to eat around May and the "Tomy", "Sensacion", "Ataulfo" and "Manila" which are readily available throughout June and July. Mexico also exports the most mangos.
In the United States, you may find "Tommy Atkins", "Torbet", "Kensington", "Haden Glen", "Lippens", "Van Dyke" and "Sensation".
Tomatoes and Tomatillos
Tomatoes originally come from South America and were introduced to Europeans through the Spaniards.
There are many varieties widely available such as the "Roma", "Beefsteak", "Cherry", and "Grape". Another member of the tomato family is the "Tomatillo" which is a small hard green fruit in a papery husk that must be removed before eating.
In Mexico the tart, green tomatillo is referred to as a tomate, and the red, round tomato as jitomate.
Tomatoes begin ripening in June and continue through August. You may still get a few small ones in early September. The tomatillos have a longer season beginning in May and ending in November.
Corn was cultivated by humans and cannot survive in the wild without care. Natives in Central America developed corn from a wild grass about 7000 years ago. It eventually spread north into the area now known as the southwestern United States and it also spread south as far as Peru. When Columbus discovered America, he brought corn back and introduced it to Europe.
The many types of corn include "Flint" which is an Indian corn with white, red or brown kernels and is used as popcorn. The kind you find in the grocery stores is "Sweet" which can be eaten off the cob. "Field" corn is what is processed into feed for cattle.
"Sweet" corn is also classified as yellow which has larger kernels and white which has smaller, sweeter kernels.
Corn season runs from May through September. The corn is best used immediately after picking because the sugars gradually turn to starch making it less sweet.
Plantains Year round
Green Chile August - September
Red Chile September - November
Apples August - March
Onions July - March
Pumpkin calabaza August - March