A millennials favourite and primarily grown in Mexico, you can always try and grow your own avocados in a greenhouse if you live somewhere cooler!
The avocado is a superfood, a small avocado will supply your brain with what it needs to stay healthy, and it will supply your body with twenty vitamins and trace minerals.
According to various studies, avocados provide good fat to the body and are, therefore, important for your heart health and they also boost nutrient absorption.
You can eat avocados as they are, use them to make a thick and delicious avocado juice, or use them to make some delicious guacamole.
We teach you how to plant, care for and harvest your avocados with extra tips and common problems you may face when attempting to grow your own.
How to Plant Avocados
The best way to grow an avocado tree is from the seed. Therefore, buy a big and healthy-looking avocado and extract the seed/ pit. After doing this, wash the seed and put it somewhere open and exposed so that it can dry.
Then stick three toothpicks into its centre about half an inch deep. Place them in such a manner that the seed or pit can stand on them like a stool. After doing this, set the pit in a glass. Add enough water to cover about half an inch of the pit and your toothpicks should help hold it up.
After following the above instructions, set the glass somewhere it can be exposed to sunlight daily or buy grow lights and expose it to 12 hours of light daily. If you do this, it will develop a stem and roots within about four weeks.
When its stem gets to around seven inches tall, cut it down to three inches. When it grows again, and the roots grow a little more, remove the pit and plant it in a ten-inch pot with planting soil. Leave it half-exposed just like it was in the glass.
How To Care For Avocado Trees
Water your plant but only after confirming that the soil in the pot is dry. Generally, you will need to water your avocado two to three times a week.
After your avocado grows taller than the height of the pot is it in, you should transfer it outside (climate dependent). When transferring it to the ground, make sure you do not disturb the soil around its roots to avoid damaging them. Also, make sure you plant it somewhere it can be exposed to full sunlight.
Avocados usually take a long time to produce fruit, so you should be patient with your plant and give it time to mature. If you do not want to wait for a lot of time, you should simply buy a young avocado tree that is a few years old and close to maturity. It will give you avocados one or two years after you bring it home.
How To Harvest Avocados
Once your avocado tree has produced fruit, you should pick about five of them when you suspect they are ready and allow them to ripen inside. If they are mature, they will ripen without shrivelling within 12 days.
If you find your avocados are ready, pick them and gently lower them into bags to avoid damaging them. Make sure to store them in a cool and dry place.
An avocado tree can produce up to 300 fruit a year so you’d better have a plan for your bumper harvest, here are some recipes you can try!
Tips & Common Problems
Avocado trees take a lot of time to mature if grown from seeds/ pits. To start harvesting avocadoes sooner rather than later, you could buy mature avocado trees that are several months or one year to maturity to plant in your garden.
If grown indoors glasshouse whitefly could be an issue but there are other pests that will attack your plants outside too. Usual fly control via biological or pesticide methods works well in most cases.
After the two or three years growing indoors, plants will often begin to show signs of leaf discolouration and deterioration. There is little that can be done, especially if you live in a colder climate and you can’t grow them outside.
If repotting your avocado plant because the roots have gotten too big, this may provide a short-term stimulus for growth. However, if you can move them outside (under some cover, perhaps) this would give you longer lasting plants as they appear to dislike long-term cultivation in the drier atmosphere of a house.