Avocados are one of the most popular fruits in today’s age. They are trendy, taste great, and have an excellent amount of versatility. Unfortunately, they can also be expensive or hard to get.
To get around that, you can grow your own avocados at home. This is a great way to enjoy the tasty green fruit without paying, and it enables you to get access to it each and every year. Not to mention, the plants also add a nice bit of scenery to any home or yard.
Five Steps Of Planting And Growing An Avocado Tree
When choosing how to grow avocado, there are a few ways you can go. You can aim for a full tree or tend a smaller inside plant. The tree is the only way you can get fruit, but the inside plant is perfect for apartments, smaller spaces, and those who don’t want to upkeep a yard.
As you’ll see in the following guide, there are many steps to follow when learning how to grow avocado. However, they are relatively simple once you know what you’re doing.
That ease, combined with the tasty end result, is the main reason to pick the fruit over other plants
1. Every Plant Begins With A Seed
Regardless of what you want the end result to be, to learn how to grow avocado at home you have to start with a pit.
This is the best way to make use of the large, inedible seed and helps you turn something you’d normally throw in the trash into a plant you can use to spruce up your home.
If you want to plant an avocado seed, you first need to get yourself an avocado. Eat it and then save the pit, or cut out the pit and store the rest for later. Once you have the seed in hand, wash and dry it as thoroughly as possible. You want to get rid of any residue that might be left behind.
From there, find a jar and fill it up with water. Just be sure not to fill it all the way. You want to leave a little bit of space at the top. It is also important to point the broad end of the pit down into the water.
This next step is one of the trickier parts of this process. Gather three toothpicks and carefully put them into the pit so that they stick out at three different points around the pit.
Though these do not need to be uniformly spaced apart, they do need to stick out over the jar lid. Once all three are in, they should suspend the pit from the jar in a way where it is about halfway in the water.
2. Turning The Seed Into A Plant
Now that your jar is set up, the next step in the process of learning how to grow avocado is getting results.
Take the prepared jar and stick it in a warm, sunny spot like a window sill. It is important to get your avocado pit a good amount of heat, but you never want to place it into direct sunlight. Indirect is the way to go for the best results.
As time passes, the pit will slowly grow. Just be sure to keep an eye on it, so it doesn’t soak up too much water. If levels get low, refill as needed.
It takes roughly two to six weeks for the growing process to begin. In that time you should see roots and a stem. This is the mark to follow because it is easy to track even if you do not know how to grow avocado or have any gardening background.
If nothing happens by the eight-week mark, you want to discard the pit and start over with a new one. There is no reason to keep trying past that point.
Once here, you need to monitor your pit’s growth. Let the stem grow out to six or seven inches, and then cut it back by half.
Only once the roots grow thick, and the stems and leaves come back should you move the plant into a soil-filled pot. Though you can use a few different sizes, your best results will come from a pot ten inches in diameter.
Leave half the seed exposed above the soil.
3. Going To The Great Outdoors
There are many discussions on how to grow avocado, and all them involve planting the seed in different ways. While planting with the above method is easy and gives you a handy new houseplant, you can also get real fruit by moving the pit outside.
This step is more intuitive for people who garden because, as with other plants, you soil the seed, water it, and let it grow into a tree. Even so, there are a few key steps to keep in mind.
As avocados grow in tropical climates, they don't do well in the cold. For that reason, temperature matters.
The unfortunate truth is that you aren’t going to be able to keep or maintain an outdoor avocado plant in colder regions without getting a specific type. The frigid air will almost always off regular breeds, and they won’t have a chance once freezing winters set in.
However, you do have options if you live in a place with a lot of sun.
Those in warmer regions can plant their sprouted seed (or even a nursery-grown tree) outdoors and then tend to it as normal. However, even in warmer areas, it is important to first plant in spring before the colder months arrive.
In addition, choose a site with a lot of sun and great drainage. Also, go for protected areas that are safe from wind or frost. Make sure you give the tree a lot of room to grow and plant it a bit higher in the soil.
4. Caring For Your Avocado Plant
Once you have your avocado planted and ready to flourish, you want to upkeep it in a way where it stays healthy and growing.
Water it frequently, and throw in an occasional deep soak when you can. The plant needs to stay moist so that it can grow, but you never want to soak it too much because that could oversaturate it.
This should not be a problem if the soil drains well, but be aware of how much water you’re giving your plant. The ideal amount is about two inches of water each week during the summer.
Also be sure to allow the soil to slightly dry out before you water again. You want to give your plant a lot of love, but you never want to do too much as once.
As avocados sit within the top six inches of soil, this process doesn’t take quite as long as it would with other plants. Stay on top of it and do your best to reach a middle ground where your seed won’t drown or dry out.
5. Fertilize With The Right Ingredients
Finally, you need to reinforce the nourishing effects of a good watering schedule with the use of nutrient-rich soil.
A crucial part in learning how to grow avocado is picking the correct fertilizer. Fertilizing is a key process in growing any plant, and that is why you need to make sure your avocados get the right mix.
There are different options on the market, but you should focus on the ones that contain the right ingredients. That typically means any plant food specially made for avocados or citrus fruits, as well as fertilizers with large amounts of nitrogen relative to the phosphorous and potassium content.
That equation may sound confusing, but it just means the first number in the N-P-K ratio on the label is higher than the second and third.
Though the time when you feed your plant will differ slightly based on where you live, it is best to fertilize your avocados every 12 to 16 weeks if they are inside a container. If they are outside, you want to apply in the late winter, midsummer, and early fall.
If you’re diligent and take the time to work year after year, you will eventually reach a point where your tree will bear fruit. It is a long process, but the tree is a beautiful addition to your yard or property even without giving a harvest.
The Fruits Of Your Labor
Getting a seed all the way to a plant or tree may seem difficult when you don’t know how to grow avocado, but as long as you follow this guide, you’ll see results.
Always have a plan at the start of the growing process. Know if you want to get a full tree or just an indoor plant and then take the entire process one step at a time.
It does not matter how you start the process (pit or store-bought plant) if you’re patient and careful you’ll be making your own toast or enjoying your new lovely house plant in no time.