Avocado Tree From Seed Tips:
1. Be Gentle
Pictured above is an avocado tree I kept in a jar of fresh water for over a year before transferring to soil. As you can see, the roots are intricate and very fragile.
We want to give the pit the best chance at surviving and maturing into a tree.
Because of this, do not stab the pit with a knife when you are removing it from the center of the avocado. This causes stress and will minimize your chances of seeing it thrive.
Instead, gently remove it from the flesh of the avocado with your fingers.
Also, be gentle when transferring these delicate roots to the soil. Handle them by the stem and leaves only, not by the roots.
2. Propagate for 2 Weeks
Rinse any remaining avocado from the pit and peel off the thin outer layer of skin.
Wrap the pit in a wet paper towel and place into a ziplock bag with the date written on it. Put away in a dark cabinet for about two weeks.
Set a reminder on your calendar or phone to check it (you will forget, trust me, I know from experience).
This method will jumpstart the propagation time.
After two weeks check to see if the pit is cracked slightly open with little white roots coming out one or both sides. It is ready to be transferred to water.
3. Transfer to Water in a Warm Sunny Window
You can use toothpicks to suspend the pit over water or find an alternate method.
As you can see above, I used the bottom of a plastic cup with a hole cut in it for the roots to go through.
Experiment with different techniques and see what works best. Sometimes the toothpicks can be another stressor, other times they do just fine.
If you have a glass jar that's narrow enough at the lid that the pit can rest on top without falling in, that's perfect.
You can also use a plastic water or soda bottle, cut the top off and invert it inside the bottle.
This method is nice because you can simply cut the plastic around the roots with scissors when you are ready to transfer, without having to tug the roots through the opening as you would have to on a glass jar (this could cause damage).
Make sure the roots are submerged in the water. Depending on how hot it gets, you will need to add more water as it evaporates; make sure the roots are never left dry. Replace water once a week, being very careful with the roots when pouring out the old water.
The most important thing to remember about growing an avocado tree from seed is that some pits just won't ever turn into plants, but if you keep trying, the wait will be worth it
I am attaching some links below for avocado tree pots and growing stations I found on Amazon:
and this one for 12 look like good options.
I discovered (by accident) that avocado trees will grow bigger and faster if they are close to a source of hot steam.
The steam from a coffee maker and electric tea kettle mimics the natural environment of this tropical houseplant.
The shelf above my kitchen counter happened to be filled with my pots and jars of plants, including my first avocado tree (the one that's over 4 feet tall now.)
If this is not possible with the layout of your house but you have a sunny window in your bathroom, the steam from the shower is another option.
This is not a crucial step so long as your jar stays warm. Purchase a continuous misting bottle so your plant stays well hydrated.
5. Trim Stem
This was the hardest thing for me to do as a plant mama.
When your little plant is growing tall it can seem counterintuitive and damaging to trim it back.
But trimming is a common gardening practice that helps train plants to grow strong and resilient.
Once the stem of your avocado tree reaches 6 inches, trim down to 3 inches using scissors.
If you're having a hard time doing this, try experimenting with several plants: trim one down and leave the other tall.
6. Transfer to Soil
Once your stem has regrown to 6 inches, it is ready to be transferred to soil or you can keep it in water for up to a year. You can experiment and research what works best for you.
Consider adding some compost to the soil, as this will act as a natural fertilizer and will encourage growth.
Also, you can add rocks to the bottom of the pot to help drainage.
Choose a medium to large sized pot that will be able to handle the roots as they quickly grow and expand.
The larger the roots can spread out, the happier and taller your tree will be.
Filling the pot halfway with your soil mixture of choice, create a dip in the center of the pot and place your avocado tree in it.
Handle only the stem and leaves, not the roots.
The tree doesn't need to be watered very frequently, usually no more than once a week or once every two weeks. Place in a sunny window.
Trim leaves occasionally if they become discolored and as the plant grows to help with uniform growth and root strength.
7. Keep Growing
Now that you know how to grow an avocado tree from a pit, you can try to grow a new one every time you eat one.
Some pits will never grow to a full tree, so it's helpful and encouraging to have several growing at once in case one doesn't mature.
In my house this is easy, as avocados are one of my favorite foods to eat.
If you compost, you may be surprised to find avocado trees growing out of your compost pile in the warm months: my dad found 8 growing in his this past fall!
Impress your friends and family by showing off your new avocado tree. These plants also make great gifts, in a jar of water or a pot of soil. Comment below with any questions and tell me your experience growing an avocado tree from seed.
This post is all about growing an avocado tree from seed.