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New Gardeners Guide to Growing Avocado's

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Kit happily writes articles on almost any topic you could hope for. When he's not knee-deep in programming, he enjoys chilling with his cat

Avocado cut with a seed showing

Avocado cut with a seed showing

Growing an avocado from a seed

Among the easiest ways to grow an avocado is by starting with a seed. After washing it well, you should place it in a warm place, out of direct sunlight. This will promote faster sprouting. Place the seed into the water when it has sprouted a third of its way. Make sure the water does not become foggy. Fresh water will prevent the seed from rotting. Then, check it weekly to make sure that it is not damaged.

You can buy seeds at a local grocery store or purchase them online. Avocado plants grow best indoors, so dwarf varieties are best. Avocado trees from seeds are much easier to grow than fruit from cuttings. Seedlings can be started from just about any kind of plant, and the process is comparable to rooting cuttings in water. A few seeds may not sprout, so it's best to try another one.

To sprout avocado seeds, wash the seed and suspend it over a glass of water. Keep the water away from direct sunlight to avoid bacterial growth. When the roots are established, you can transplant your seedling into the soil. A pot with drainage holes will help keep the plant moist. The avocado plant will grow roots after about two to six weeks.

A small plant will produce several fruit and flowers in a few weeks. Avocado trees can grow up to four feet tall. A few weeks after the seedlings emerge, you can harvest them. The fruit is edible and can be stored in the refrigerator. Avocado trees are slow to mature, but they can still be harvested regularly. They can last from five to 13 years. If you'd like to pick avocados early, be sure to keep them refrigerated to avoid over-ripening.

Ensure the humidity level is about sixty to eighty percent. This is an important consideration since avocado trees do well in warm climates with moderate humidity levels. West Indian and Mexican cultivars need about 65 percent humidity levels for optimal growth. In the winter months, however, avocado trees may need less water. After the leaves have fallen, allow the soil to dry out a couple of days before watering again.

Avocado tree

Avocado tree

Avocado root rot

Root rot in avocado trees is caused by too much water. It will eventually prevent the tree from getting water from the ground to the leaves. Symptoms include yellow or brown leaves and stems that are softer than normal. The plant's leaves may not even perk up. If you notice these symptoms, you may have a fungus. Fungicides can treat the problem but should be used with extreme caution around children and pets.

Root rot affects avocado plants when dead roots remain exposed. If these dead roots remain untreated, the disease will spread to the healthy roots. When this happens, the leaves of the plant will curl, which is its way of defending itself. Eventually, the tree will die unless treated. To prevent this problem, you should only water your avocado houseplant when the soil feels dry. Providing adequate water to the roots of your plant is vital for its health.

Despite the name, it's important to understand what avocado leaves look like. Yellow leaves can indicate a nutrient deficiency. The plants usually show signs of nutrient deficiencies, including zinc. If the soil is acidic, iron may be present. Adding fertilizer to the soil can correct the problem, but it will likely lead to more problems than it solves. To remedy the problem, you can try replacing the soil and moving the plant if necessary.

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While the avocado tree is rarely affected by insects or pests, it is susceptible to sunburn and root rot.If you are growing indoors its obviously less likely to get sun burn, but you shouldn’t keep it near a window, in a conservatory, with some space is ideal. Signs of these diseases include undersized pale leaves and brown leaf tips.

The leaves will eventually wilt and fall off the tree. To prevent this from happening, remove the infected fruit from the plant before they develop mushy roots. If you suspect root rot in your avocado houseplant, remove the infected leaf tissue and repot it with a fast-draining potting mix. You may also want to cut the plant's roots off if it is already wilting.

The condition is also called Rossellinia root rot. Although it's not common, this strain is easily identifiable, with white patches forming around the base of the tree. Unlike most avocado root rot, it can be treated, but in most cases is fatal. It can be controlled, though, by keeping the soil dry. If you have a healthy avocado plant, you can continue to enjoy its healthy growth, and have no need to fear such a horror story.

Pollinating an avocado plant

Despite being a perennial plant, avocados rarely bloom indoors. However, as they get older, they may begin putting out clusters of yellow flowers, staggered in time to maximize pollination. Avocado flowers are male and female, and function very precisely in temperatures of about 70 degrees Fahrenheit. When temperatures fall below this level, the flowers cease to function, making it impossible to pollinate the plant. The plant's male flowers remain open at night, and its female counterpart closes permanently in the evening.

The avocado tree is native to southern and central America. It grows to heights of 30 to 80 feet. In California, the oldest tree is on the campus of the University of California, Berkeley. The fruit is about ten to 25 percent pit. An avocado tree can produce up to 500 pounds of fruit each year. If you grow it indoors, however, you'll have a hard time harvesting them. The best way to guarantee a harvest is to plant it outdoors.

Close up of an avocado

Close up of an avocado

Pruning an avocado

If you're growing an avocado from a seed indoors, it's best to follow the same guidelines as if you were growing a flowering plant in a garden. To encourage bushier growth, prune the plant every second or third year. Cut the stems about 2 centimeters above the node, removing any yellowed or dying leaves. To propagate the plant, take stem cuttings from a few of the plants. Pruning the plant will increase its appearance, but be sure to use clean tools and a sharp knife to avoid shocking it.

If you don't prune them right, the branches will become tangled, which may slow down fruit production and hinder irrigation. It's also crucial to prune newly-planted avocado trees, because the roots don't yet have a solid hold on the soil. You can use loppers to cut off the top branches of your tree and prune them to shape and size.

Avocado trees are sensitive to pruning, so they should be done only when they aren't producing new leaves. Avoid pruning them while the leaves are growing, because this will cause damage to the new limbs. Regardless of the pruning technique, prune them to six to eight inches (15-20 cm) long. This will allow the avocado tree to develop the shape and size that you desire. If you don't prune them properly, your avocado tree may not grow to its fullest potential. This is almost true for all plants and trees, as a handy reminder.

This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.

© 2022 Kit

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