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How to grow an avocado tree from seed

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Here are the basics for growing an avocado tree from a seed:

  1. Remove and clean the pit, then insert toothpicks around the middle to suspend it over a glass of water, ensuring the bottom half is submerged.
  2. Place the glass in a warm, bright area but out of direct sunlight. Change the water regularly, and wait for roots and a sprout to develop, which can take 2-6 weeks.
  3. Once the sprout is about 6 inches tall and has several roots, plant the pit in a pot with well-draining potting soil, exposing the top half of the pit to the air.
  4. Keep the soil moist but not waterlogged. Avocado seedlings need consistent moisture, especially during the early stages of growth.
  5. As the tree grows, transplant it to a larger pot (or outdoors in a suitable climate), ensuring it gets plenty of sunlight and is protected from frost.
Avocado pit

How to grow an avocado tree from seed

Growing an avocado tree from seed is such a fun gardening project! The big pits can be sprouted into a little baby seedling tree. If you live in a warm climate, you can eventually plant your avocado outdoors, and in cooler spots, you can keep it as a houseplant for a few years (although they rarely fruit indoors).

While growing avocado trees from seed is certainly fun, its not the best option if you’re planning on creating your own avocado orchard you can reliably harvest from. For that, it’s best to go to the nursery and buy trees of a desired cultivar. If you would like to grow a specific variety (like Hass), the desired variety can often be grafted onto the rootstock you grow.

Sprouting an avocado pit

Planting the seed

Growing an avocado tree from seed is a fun and rewarding project that can be done in just a few steps. Start by selecting an avocado pit with no cracks or blemishes, then rinse it off to remove any residue. Next, use three toothpicks to suspend the pit over a glass of water so that half of it is submerged.

Change out the water every two days until you see roots emerging from the bottom of the pit (this could take up to six weeks). Once there are several inches of root growth, carefully transfer your new plant into a pot filled with soil and give it plenty of sunlight and warmth.

How to grow an avocado tree from seed

Caring for the tree

To ensure your avocado tree grows healthy and strong, make sure to provide adequate light and moisture. Place your potted tree near a sunny window or outdoors if possible, but avoid direct sunlight during midday hours as this can cause sunburn on leaves.

Water regularly – about once per week – making sure not to overwater as this can lead to root rot. Feeding monthly with fertilizer can help promote healthy growth too (if one or more nutrients are deficient).

How to grow an avocado tree from seed
How to grow an avocado tree from seed
How to grow an avocado tree from seed

Caring for the tree

Watering

Water your avocado tree regularly, making sure the soil is moist but not soggy. Depending on the climate and season, this could mean watering every few days or once a week. If you’re unsure if it needs water, stick your finger in the soil up to the first knuckle; if it feels dry, give it some water.

Pruning

Pruning helps keep your avocado tree healthy and looking its best. Start by removing any dead branches or twigs that are sticking out at odd angles from the main trunk of the tree. Then look for any branches that are crossing over each other or growing too close together and prune those back as well. Finally, remove any suckers (small shoots) coming off of the base of the trunk so they don’t take away energy from fruit production later on down the line.

Fertilizing

Fertilize your avocado tree with an all-purpose fertilizer twice a year—once in early spring and again in late summer/early fall when temperatures start to cool off slightly—to help promote growth and fruiting potential. Make sure to follow package instructions for dosage amounts since applying too much can damage plants.

With proper care, your avocado tree can thrive and grow; however, it will eventually outgrow its current pot. In the next section, we’ll discuss how to repot your tree for continued growth.

Repotting an avocado tree

Repotting an avocado tree is a necessary step in its growth and development. As the tree grows, it will need more space to accommodate its roots. It’s important to repot the tree into a larger pot before the roots become too crowded and begins to circle around inside the existing pot.

When choosing a new pot for your avocado tree, make sure that it has drainage holes at the bottom and is large enough for your growing plant. A good rule of thumb is to choose one that’s two inches wider than your current pot size. The material of the new pot can be either plastic or clay; both are suitable options as long as they have adequate drainage holes at their base.

To transfer your avocado tree from its old pot into its new home, start by gently removing it from its current container with care not to damage any of its delicate roots in the process. Once you have removed it from its original container, place some soil in the bottom of your new planter before adding water until it reaches about halfway up on the sides of the root ball (the mass of dirt surrounding all parts of the root).

Place this mixture carefully into your chosen planter and fill in any gaps between soil and edges with additional soil mix if needed. Finally, give your newly potted avocado tree plenty of water so that all parts are evenly moistened but not soggy or wet—this should help ensure healthy growth.

Once you have successfully transferred your avocado tree into a larger planter, make sure to monitor how much water you give it each week; too little or too much can cause problems such as leaf yellowing or even death if left unchecked for too long. Additionally, try moving plants out onto balconies during warmer months when possible so they can get plenty of sunlight without becoming overheated indoors—this will help them thrive better overall.

Finally, remember that repotting an avocado tree isn’t something you need to do every year; it should only be considered when the pot is overcrowded. Doing so helps ensure healthy growth over time while also giving plants room to breathe freely without being cramped up against other containers nearby, allowing them access to light and airflow, which ultimately aids successful fruiting later down the line.

Mary Jane Duford
Mary Jane Duford

Mary Jane Duford is a quintessential Canadian gardener. An engineer by trade, she tends to an ever-expanding collection of plants. In her world, laughter blooms as freely as her flowers, and every plant is raised with a dash of Canadian grit.

Mary Jane is a certified Master Gardener and also holds a Permaculture Design Certificate. She's also a proud mom of three, teaching her little sprouts the crucial difference between a garden friend and foe.

When she's not playing in the dirt, Mary Jane revels in her love for Taylor Swift, Gilmore Girls, ice hockey, and the surprisingly soothing sounds of bluegrass covers of classic hip-hop songs. She invites you to join her garden party, a place where you can share in the joy of growing and where every day is a new opportunity to find the perfect spot for yet another plant.

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