Not everyone has a green thumb. Some people just do not have a knack for gardening. However, it does not necessarily mean that you cannot grow your own plants and trees if you are one of those lacking in gardening skills. You can easily grow your own avocado tree and fruit just by salvaging its seed. Here is how to grow an avocado from a pit:
- Save the pit. The next time you use a recipe that includes avocados, after you are done with the fruit, do not throw away seed. You can still use it to grow your own avocado plant. Take the pit and rinse off as much of the fruit with clean water and dry it off with non-abrasive towels. It should be handled with care and allowed to dry completely. You can set it aside for a few days if you want to be sure.
- Preparing the pit. You will now need to skewer the pit with toothpicks or nails to prepare it for planting. Find the two ends of the pit. It will have a “rounder” side and a “pointed” side. The former should be the bottom while the latter will be the top. You want to keep most of the pit above water and that is where your toothpicks and nails come in. Remember that your container should be big enough to fit the pit and its “arms” but not so small that there is no room for the avocado to sprout and grow. You can use four arms in a cross arrangement or three arms in a Y-shaped arrangement. Insert the arms about half an inch deep at around the middle part of the seed.
- Growing an avocado tree. Fill the container with clean water. You want to fill until almost to the top so that while the pit is suspended on the rim of the container, only the bottom part will be submerged in water. Place your avocado seed somewhere it can receive plenty of sunlight like on a window sill. In about a month to a month and a half, the seed should split open and starting sprouting a stem and roots. Once your stem has grown to about six inches in height, pinch off the top. Do this a few more times and you will eventually see multiple branches coming out of the stem. You will know it is time to transfer it to soil once you see more roots and leaves growing. Fill a pot with enriched soil and dig a hole big enough to accommodate the roots and the pit. Remove the arms and plant it in the soil. The top part should be level with the surface so that the stem does not rot in the dirt. Give it the right amount of plant food and water and prune when needed and it should continue to grow nicely. This is the most common method of growing avocado. There is another technique that requires you to wrap the pit in moist paper towels and place it inside an airtight plastic bag and leave in a sunny or warm area. Once it begins to sprout long roots and stems, transfer to a pot. Or, you can place the pit in a mixture of sand and soil with the pointed half above surface. Leave the pot in a sunny spot and keep the soil moist.
- Tips and reminders. The fruit grown from your avocado plant will almost always be inedible. There is a really small chance that you will grow fruits you can eat but don’t push your luck. Remember to change the water every two days to get rid of bacteria and molds. Make sure that you use a well-draining pot. If your plant is not growing fast enough, wrap the container in foil to decrease the amount of sunlight received by the bottom part of the pit.
As you can see, it is actually quite easy to grow an avocado from a pit even if you lack a background in gardening. Follow the instructions above and with a little care and the most basic gardening skills, you should be able to grow your own fruit-bearing avocado plant.