Avocados are a favorite tropical fruit, and for good reason. They are very tasty—can you say guacamole? In addition to tasting great, avocados are also very healthy—even the avocado seed benefits will astound you! They have been shown to help improve brain health, they contain a number of essential vitamins and minerals, they are full of healthy fats that can improve your skin. Unfortunately, avocados can also be costly, and with crop shortages and potential increases in import costs could continue to raise the price. No worries, here is how to grow an avocado tree from a seed with these easy-to-follow instructions.
Sprouting an avocado pit is the first step to growing your own avocado tree. Take the following steps to sprout your avocado pit:
- Clean the avocado pit completely
- Puncture the avocado around the middle with toothpicks
- Fill your chosen glass, can, or small plant pot with water
- Place the avocado pit in the water, using the toothpicks to hold the upper half above the waterline
- Move the avocado pit to a warm location out of direct sunlight
- Trim back the plant once its stem reaches about six inches, and allow it to continue to grow
How to Grow an Avocado Tree from Seed
How to Plant an Avocado Seed
Once your avocado sapling reaches about six inches in height again, it is ready for planting. Take the following steps to plant your avocado tree:
- Select a large pot with a few small holes in the bottom for drainage
- Fill the plant pot with organic soil and nutrient-rich compost until almost full
- Dig a small hole in the center of the soil, large enough for the avocado’s roots and pit
- Place your sapling roots down into the hole
- Cover the roots and pit of your avocado with soil
- Water your plant and surrounding soil thoroughly
- Place the pot in a location where the avocado tree will receive plenty of direct sunlight
Avocado Plant Care
Once your avocado is planted, taking care of it is simple and won’t require much of a time commitment. This handy guide will help you keep your avocado tree healthy:
- If the soil starts to feel dry … then water the plant
- If the leaves start to turn brown or feel dry or brittle … then water the avocado tree more frequently
- If the leaves start to turn yellow or the soil is very moist … then water the plant less frequently
- If the leaves start to show chlorosis or yellowing in between the green leaf veins … then supplement the soil with a nutrient-rich, organic fertilizer
- If the leaves start to lose color … then move the avocado tree into more direct sunlight
Harvesting Your Avocados
It may take several years of growth for your avocado tree to start fruiting and produce new avocados. In some cases, this process may take over five years. The fruiting process will take longer if the plant doesn’t get adequate sunlight and nutrients.
Once the tree is fruiting, you will be able to harvest delicious, nutritious avocados throughout the year. Avocados are ready to harvest once they are fully green and begin to lose some of their brightness, with larger fruit maturing first. Some varieties will begin to develop brown speckling once tree-ripened.
Fresh avocados must soften on a counter for a few days or a week until ready to eat. Avocados are ready to eat once they are soft enough to give a little when gently squeezed in your hand. Your tree will continue producing avocados, allowing you to harvest them whenever you want.
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