The avocado is a wonderful fruit that we can find almost all year round in the market. This fruit is native to Mexico and Central America is well known for its flavor and nutrition. The benefits and characteristics that the avocado provides go beyond its delicious flavor. It contains vitamin E that helps delay aging, vitamins A, C, D, B, and K, omega 3, folic acid, potassium (more than twice as much as the banana), and fiber. Learn all about how to grow an avocado from seed in this post.
There are more than 80 varieties of avocado but the most common is the Hass variety. Next time you eat an avocado, save the seed and you can plant your tree.
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How to Grow an Avocado from Seed
To start your tree must have the avocado seed, the seed mustn’t be damaged or broken. Wash the seed to eliminate remains of the fruit without removing the brown layer that covers the seed.
We must locate which is the upper part (where the sprout will grow) and the lower part (where the root will grow). Many seeds are almost spherical, so we must pay close attention. The pointed part is the top and the flat end is the bottom, so the flat part is the one that must be submerged in water.
Since we know which is the lower part of our seed, we will take 3 or 4 toothpicks. We will drill our seed with the toothpicks evenly distributed. The toothpicks will hold our seed so that the lower half can touch the water, so they must be well fitted so that it does not fall, for good support. Finally, we will place our seed in a glass or container with fresh water.
Our seed must be in a space where the sun gives it. It is good to use a transparent container so that one can easily observe when the small roots begin to sprout. We should change the water once or twice a week to keep our seed healthy. When we change the water we are avoiding the formation of mold, bacteria, fungi, or any disease that could affect our seed.
Sprouting Avocado Seed
For our avocado to sprout we can wait up to 8 weeks, depending on the weather conditions and variety of our avocado. The top of the seed will dry out and break, and the outer layer will begin to peel off. Then you will see that the small main root will emerge from the lower part of the seed, and after some time it will branch out and grow more. Our root must be always in contact with water since it could die if it is not submerged. As the root grows, the shoot will begin to grow at the top.
We must wait until our plant is about 6” (15cm) long and cut the stem at about 3” (7cm), this will help stimulate the growth of our plant. When it reaches about 6”- 7” (15-18cm) it is time to transplant.
How to Grow an Avocado from Seed: Repotting Avocado Seed
In an 8” – 10” (20-25cm) diameter pot with soil and compost, we will remove the sticks and put the seedling in the pot. It is important to leave the upper half of the seed uncovered. Place the container in a luminous place, but inside the house, to protect it. Remember, avocados love the sun.
This plant needs moist but not soggy soil. We can observe an excess of humidity when the leaves start to turn yellow, if this happens, let the plant dry out for a few days.
When our plant reaches 10” (25cm) high, we must prune the first two pairs of leaves, this will encourage the plant to give side shoots and more leaves. We must repeat this step every time the plant grows between 4” – 6” (10-15cm). This way we will be forming a leafy tree.
The avocado is a plant of warm climates and during the winter we must protect it if the temperatures fall below 44.6°F (7°C). You can take your pots inside your house during autumn and winter.
The avocado is a plant that takes years to grow and bear fruit, it can start from 3 or 4 years or take up to 15 years.