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How To Grow Your Own Avocado Tree
Thursday, March 21, 2019

You only need to scan the menu of your local brunch hot spot to see that our nation’s love of avocados isn’t just a phase. In fact, many of us are borderline obsessed with this healthy, super-versatile fruit.

Just imagine if you had an almost endless supply in your backyard and could eat avocados for breakfast, lunch and dinner - for free!

Luckily, it is super easy to grow your own avocado tree from a pit. But you need to consider it as a long-term investment. It can take ten years or more for a tree to grow and start producing fruit!

What that means is that there is no time to lose! Grab yourself a pit or two and get growing. Your future self will thank you for it.

 

Here’s how to grow an avocado tree from a pit...

You will need:

  • An avocado pit (or several!)
  • A glass
  • Four toothpicks

Once you have you supplies, follow these steps:

  1. Remove the pit from the avocado. Be careful not to damage the thin brown skin which acts as a protective cover.
  2. Gently rinse it clean.
  3. Figure out which is the bottom (where the roots will emerge). This is the part you will want to submerge in water. The flatter end of the sphere is the bottom. It may also appear slightly faded.
  4. Firmly embed the toothpicks evenly around the outside of the pit. You will be placing them on the rim of the glass so that the bottom 2.5 cm of the pit is sitting in water.
  5. Fill the glass, then place the pit at the top, balanced on the toothpicks.
  6. Put the glass on a sunny windowsill - avocados adore sunshine.
  7. Change the water every two to three days to ensure no bacteria or fungus can develop. They can damage the developing roots.

 

What next?

Now the waiting game begins! Check your developing avocado plant daily. It is important that the bottom half doesn’t become dry, particularly once the taproot emerges.

It can take anywhere from two to eight weeks to see any development, so you must be patient. The first thing you will see is a crack forming in the pit.

Eventually, a tiny taproot will emerge from the bottom, and a wee sprout will start to appear on the top.

 

Nurturing Your Avocado Seedling

Once your sprout has grown to about 15 cms, cut it back down to around 7 cm to promote new growth. When it has regrown back to 15cm again, it is time to give your little avocado seedling some soil.

Use some potting mix and gently place your plant into an 8-10 cm pot, leaving the top half of the pit exposed.

Don’t forget to keep it somewhere sunny, and make sure you water it regularly. The soil should always be damp but never over soaked.

When your little tree is 30 cms tall, pinch off the top two sets of leaves. This helps the seedling to be bushier as it grows.

 

The Birds And The Bees

Sadly, there is no guarantee your avocado tree will ever bear fruit. But, you can increase the chances by planting more than one. This ensures that the male and female flower parts work their magic.

Commercially grown avocados are propagated by grafting. When you plant your own, you are relying on mother nature and a little bit of luck.

Top tip: Don’t forget to give your seedling a lot of space once you move it outside. One day, it may grow up to 12 metres high and 6 metres wide! Choose a sunny spot with well-draining soil, then when it reaches maturity you can sit right under that beautiful tree enjoying its delicious offerings!

 

While you are waiting for your avocado tree to grow, you might want to feed your avocado addiction. Head on over to the Twisted Citrus store to order yours today.

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Our first order of mandarins, limes and lemons arrived in Arrowtown on Thursday, 2 days after dispatch and they are fantastic! Great condition and excellent flavour and juice! Will be back for more!
Phillipa Dobson-Brown - Arrowtown

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