Germinating an avocado bone is easy! In Mediterranean regions, it is even possible to grow avocado in the ground where it can bloom and produce its famous fruit. Elsewhere, this beautiful tree with green lanceolate leaves is grown in pots to give a tropical touch to an interior.
Avocado, the Latin Persea Americana, is a subtropical tree that belongs to the Lauraceae family, as well as laurels or cinnamon. Originally from Central America, it is grown in many tropical and subtropical regions where it can reach 15 to 20 m high. It is also grown in the region of Malaga.
Its lanceolate leaves are perennial, light green to dark green. When grown in an open field under a suitable climate, it gives large clusters of small yellow star-shaped flowers in summer. Then they become avocados that are harvested during the winter months.
The fruits of avocado are quite impressive, weigh up to 1 kg for some varieties and measure up to 20 cm. They are rich in vitamins and lipids, and therefore constitute a very good healthy food. But be careful! Although fruits are edible, avocado bark and leaves are toxic to animals because they contain persin, a toxic fatty acid that can cause death in sufficient quantities.
Did you know? The name avocado comes from the word “ahuacatl,” which refers to the testicles in an ancient Indian language of Mexico, Nahuatl, in reference to the shape of the fruit.
Avocado species and varieties
Persea Americana comes in several varieties, more or less rustic:
- ‘Hass,’ which bears fruit with thick, grainy skin, of very good flavor quality, with a nutty touch. Although it is sensitive to frost, this variety is one of the most cultivated in the world, since its fruits are resistant.
- ‘Fuerte,’ which withstands temperatures up to -3 ° C. Its pear-shaped fruits, with fine, grainy skin, are harvested from February to April.
- ‘Zutano,’ which produces light green fruits, with fine and very bright skin, which is harvested in December.
- ‘Ettinger,’ which gives the most elongated fruit, with a delicate flavor.
For an avocado crop on the ground in an area where there are no frosts, choose a rustic variety anyway. The ‘Strong’ variety is especially recommended. Plant your avocado in the sun or in the shade, protecting it from the winds. Sowing is done in spring.
Avocado appreciates the light and well-drained soils that are neutral or acidic, but not calcareous.
In other areas, it is better to plant avocado in a pot. Choose a perforated pot to help evacuate the water, put inside the clay balls, and fill the pot with horticultural compost. Then place your avocado next to a window because it needs a lot of light.
Do you want to grow an avocado from a bone? Nothing easier!
First, select the largest bones and those that do not show a knife trail.
- Then clean with clean water, being careful to remove the remaining meat.
- Nail three toothpicks around and place them in a glass with the pointed side up. The core should not touch the walls.
- Fill the glass with water to submerge the lower part of the bone and change the water regularly.
- After a few weeks, you should see the roots of the avocado tree, which will then measure from one to two centimeters. It is time to plant the avocado in pots in potting soil, which should always remain wet at first.
You can also plant the avocado bone directly in moist soil.
Did you know? An avocado tree usually blooms from the fifth year when placed outdoors. In fact, flowering and fruiting cannot occur indoors because the plant needs pollinating insects to reproduce.
Avocado cultivation and maintenance
Avocado needs regular watering. Potting soil should always be slightly damp, so do not hesitate to water when the substrate is dry. However, irrigation will be spaced in winter.
For a greener and brighter leaves, spray the foliage. Along the same lines, fertilizer can be made from April to September.
Is your avocado tree planted in the ground? During winter, do not hesitate to cover your foot to protect it from the cold and install a winter veil in your foliage.
For the good growth of the plant, it is better to replant the avocado every 2 or 3 years.
Avocado does not require any particular size. However, for avocado on the ground, it is possible to perform spring maintenance.
For avocado in pots, dried and yellow leaves should be removed regularly, and pinches should be used to stop height growth, which will promote branching. It will have more volume.
Avocado diseases and parasites
Avocado can be attacked by red spiders or mealybugs. Spray its leaves with water to fight red spiders. The mealybugs can be treated by installing Cryptolaemus ladybugs on the plant.