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Avocados from seed in Spain • Ian

There are many ways to propagate and grow avocados.


As you can see from the photo, I have managed to grow 3 avocados from the nut. They need potting up, but I am not sure if I should bury the nut under the soil or leave it exposed?

Regards Josie Williams Pueblo LuceroRojales 

Hi Josie,

Bury the avocado pit in the soil such that the top-half of pit shows above the surface of the soil. This ensures that the base of the seedling trunk doesn't rot under the soil. Pack the soil lightly around the pit.




To all of you who have never tried growing avocados, planting your own avocado tree is fun and easy and they grow virtually true to type. Meaning that if you plant a Hass avocado, that is what you are going to get (something that doesn't always happen when you propagate plants via seed). So the next time you eat an avocado or use one in a recipe, save the pit (seed).

There are many ways to propagate and grow avocados, and growing avocados from seed, usually brings to mind a school project of sticking toothpicks into an avocado pit and then putting it in water to watch the roots grow.

That is fine, it can work, but there is a better way to do it, because when roots are grown in water and then transplanted into soil, they do not always do very well. Also, not all avocado seeds will germinate this way.

So let us sidestep these problems and grow them in soil to begin with. The following process is fast, easy and works really we


How to plant an avocado seed step-by-step:
1. Choose a healthy, undamaged seed.

2. Soak it in hot water (40° to 52°C) for 30 minutes. This will help stop any infection from avocado root rot.

3. Cut a thin slice - about ½ inch (1 cm) - from the pointed end with a sharp knife.

4. Then dip the wound in a fungicide.

5. Sow the seed in small pot of sandy soil with the cut end slightly above the soil surface.

6. Place it in a warm location (18°C or warmer) in bright, but indirect sunlight.

7. Keep moist, but not wet, or else it will rot.

8. Germination takes about 3 to 4 weeks.

9. The seedling can be grown in the container until it is about 12 to 16 inches (30 to 40 cm) tall, then it should be ready to be moved to its final location in the garden, or potted up into a larger container.

Where to plant and care
Always plant avocados where they will get full sun, and in well-drained soil. They do not like wet feet, so allow the soil to dry a bit in between watering.


Avocados generally take cold down to -1°C and after that they will get frost damage. However, some avocados like Zutano or Mexicola will take down to -7°C.

If you live in a cold weather area that gets below freezing in the winter, then pot your seedling up in a container and move it to a sheltered location during the colder months of the year.


When planting in a container you will have to increase the container size as the tree matures, but the size of the tree can be controlled by regular pruning (plus there are dwarf varieties that do well in containers too). You will eventually have your tree in a large wine barrel or other large pot, so plan to have that container on wheels if you need to move it.

Young trees need only light feeding so only feed twice - once in the spring and once in the summer with a good avocado-citrus fertilizer, which can be found at any garden supply center.

Seed raised trees start to bear fruit when they are between 5 and 7 years old.


Cross pollination
In order to get fruit you will normally have to have two different varieties. Avocado varieties have flowers that are categorized as either type A or type B, depending upon on the time of day they open and when pollen is released.

Although many single trees do produce fruit, you are better off having one of each type.

Type A flower:
Don Gillogly
Wertz (Wurtz)

Type B flower:


While it will take time for your tree to produce its first fruit, as a gardener, just growing the tree in anticipation is usually just as much fun as eating the final product. Enjoy!


 Marc Vijverberg

Marc Vijverberg and Gurli Jakobsen 638 180 284 659 880 444

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