Step 1: Remove and Clean the Seed
Cut the avocado in half and remove the pit. Rinse the pit with cool water and blot it dry with a paper towel. You can carefully peel the pit for faster germination.
Step 2: Insert the Toothpicks
Before placing the toothpicks into the seed you’ll want to locate the “top” and bottom” of the seed. The top, or more pointed area, is where your seed will sprout. The bottom, or more flat area, is where the roots will grow from. Gently but firmly, push three to four toothpicks into the thickest width of avocado until you feel they are stable.
Step 3: Position Your Seed Over a Cup of Water
Carefully pour water into the cup, but just enough so that only half the seed will be submerged. Place the seed over a cup of water narrow enough to hold the toothpicks in place. Only the bottom half of the seed should be touching water. Adjust water levels as needed.
Step 4: Let Your Seed Receive Sunshine
Place the cup in a window where it’ll receive plenty of sunshine and let photosynthesis take its course! To prevent any mold forming be sure to change your water every week or so. Keep in mind that it’ll take about three to eight weeks before you can expect to see any sprouting. Patience during this period is key! Roots will begin to grow at the base and a stem sprout will emerge from the top.
Step 5: Plant Your Seed
Once a sprout appears and reaches 6 inches then you’re ready to transfer it to a soiled pot or put it directly into the Earth. Don’t forget to gently remove the toothpicks before you do this!
Avocado trees do well with soil that is low in saline and has much drainage. A 50/50 blend of topsoil and coir works well for these trees. The soil won’t need to be heavily fertilized until you’ve had your tree for a year. When the time arrives use a 10-10-10 fertilizer twice a year for the tree’s benefit.
If you decide you want to your tree to grow from the ground then ensure the temperature never drops below 50 º F. Otherwise, keep it in a pot so that you can move your tree inside when necessary.
Step 6: Care For Your Tree
Water your tree enough so that the soil is always moist, but not saturated. Once your plant has reached 12 inches, you can pinch off the top two sets of leaves. Doing this will make the plant grow shoots from the side which will aid in even more leaves. You can repeat this for every 6 inches of growth.