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Growing an Avocado from a Pit

Category Seeds
Plump Avocado Seed Rooting into Jar
A fun and rewarding indoor project can be starting an avocado pit. This guide is about growing an avocado from seed.
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May 18, 20041 found this helpful

After removing the pit from an avocado, don't throw it away. Wash the pit. Stick three toothpicks around the pointy upper third of the pit. Then fill up a jar water and rest the avocado pit on the rim with the large portion of the pit in the water and small portion above water. After five days, place the jar in a spot where the pit can receive sunlight. It won't be long before you see roots appears and leaves sprout. Once you have a healthy system of roots and several leaves you can transplant to potting soil. Water once a week.

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By guest (Guest Post)
September 18, 20040 found this helpful
Top Comment

Avocadoes make excellent trees, I just stick mine on nails or toothpicks, three of them, and point them towards the sky and wait. They all have their own time. Some of them never grew, some of them did.

I never pinch mine back either.

They are so wonderful! I have had my most recent plant since last spring, while it was still cold. I also put tomato seeds in the soil of my other potted plants. I have become kind of tomato crazy, I love them! After they sprout, I move them to another plant holder. They kind of keep the soil happy and the avocado plant seems to love having plants growing around it.

Mine is now three feet tall, and I talk to it each day. They like it a lot, and they like being in a pot which is big enough so they don't become pot bound. OK I admit it, I occasionally name mine.

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By guest (Guest Post)
July 27, 20081 found this helpful
Top Comment

Hi everyone, you should all try starting the pits in soil. I have been growing these things for years and soil makes them a far more solid and sturdy plant. Just tuck it about 3/4 of the way into some good potting soil pointy side up and keep moist. I always use bottled water because they don't seem to like the chlorine that's in tap water. Have fun!

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November 13, 20090 found this helpful
Top Comment

My mom has an avocado tree in her back yard that she started from a pit, and now she gets so many avocados she hands them out to all her neighbors. Of course she lives in the California Bay area, so that may help.

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January 6, 2013

If you were lucky enough to have your avocado seed sprout, then you will now need to plant it. Choose a pot that is big enough that you won't have to repot it right away. Use a potting soil that is somewhat sandy, to allow for good drainage.

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Add some soil to the pot and then test fit your seed, making sure that the top half of the seed will remain above the soil. Be very careful not to break the roots.

You can just cut or break off the toothpicks. Then gently work soil in and around the root, making sure that the seed is well support underneath. Then finish filling up the pot, leaving the top half of the seed sticking out. You may need to stake your plant up.

Your plant will do best if you mist it regularly. When watering your avocado plant, allow the soil to dry out slightly between waterings. Place your plant in a warm location, out of direct sun light. Pinch back growth as necessary. Wait a few months before fertilizing.

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December 11, 2012

Growing an avocado plant from the pit is a great project for kids to do. It is so easy. Our kids love to eat avocados and really wanted to try sprouting one. We have tried to sprout one before and it didn't work. This time it grew and the kids were so excited! Now we need to transfer it into a pot. :)

Directions:

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By 3 found this helpful
March 28, 2007

Here's a fun summer activity for the kids to enjoy and a rewarding way to recycle the left-over avocado seeds.

  1. Wash the seed and suspend it (broad end down) over a water-filled glass using 3 toothpicks. The water should cover about an inch of the seed.

  2. Place the glass in a warm location, out of direct sunlight. A mature seed will crack as roots and stem sprout in about 2 to 6 weeks.

  3. When a stem grows to six or seven inches, cut it back to about three inches.

  4. When the roots are thick and the stem has leafed out again, plant it in a rich humus soil, leaving the seed half exposed. Use a terra cotta pot with a 10-1/2 diameter.

  5. Water the avocado plant generously, but let it dry out somewhat between watering.

By Connie from Oden, AR

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September 14, 20061 found this helpful

Question:

I was wondering if anyone knows on how too start an Avocado Tree from a seed. Please Help

Hardiness Zone: 9b

Tam from Safford, AZ

Answer:

Tam, Avocado pits can be germinated in either soil or water. Pits germinated in soil are said to be hardier in the long run. Personally, I think it's more fun to watch them sprout in water.

Starting them in soil: Soak the pit in water for 24 hours prior to planting. Place the pit (broad end down) into a pot filled with a moist, soil-less mix. Bury the pit so it's about 1/2 inch below the surface of the soil and set the pot in a warm place. Keep the soil moist, but not wet. To keep the pot humid and to conserve moisture, you may want to cover it with plastic wrap. This isn't necessary, and if you do it, make sure you keep your eye out for signs of mold or rotting.

Starting them in water: Insert three toothpicks into the bottom 1/3 of the pit to create a tripod that will support the pit when suspended over a jar filled with water. Rest the pit over the mouth of the jar so that the base of the pit is submerged in 1/2 inch of water. Add fresh water daily to maintain the level of the water. Eventually, the pit will crack and roots will appear, followed by one or more stems. If multiple stems emerge, leave them all intact.

Transplanting seedlings: After the stem(s) grows to 6 inches, cut it back to 3 inches to encourage bushy growth. At this point, you'll need to transplant the seedling into soil within a few weeks of cutting it back. If you germinated the pit in water, don't worry about removing the toothpicks-just cut them off with a scissors before planting. When transplanting, be very careful to avoid injuring the new roots. Use a large pot filled with a light, sandy soil.

Once transplanted, place your avocado seedling in a warm, bright location, out of direct sunlight. Keep the air around it humid by misting it frequently (especially in the winter), but let it dry out slightly between each watering. Let your new transplant settle in for several months before giving it any fertilizer. It will be getting plenty of nutrients in the new soil. As your avocado grows, you may find it needs some staking or support. You can keep growth in check by pinching and pruning back as necessary.

Good Luck!
Ellen

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By 3 found this helpful
April 1, 2014

It is that time of year when I get the wonderful spring fever and want to start growing things. Here are a batch of avocado pits sitting in their own pods made from foam egg crates.

Avocado Pits in Egg Crates

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August 30, 2011

I have several avocado seeds ready for the Path Garden. There are already 4-6 tiny trees from seeds from a couple of years ago.

Avocado Rooting into Jar

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By 0 found this helpful
July 30, 2013

I took the pit right from the avocado and planted it with my tropical plant. It is flourishing so far. I guess I need to mist it. I will stake it up if it seems to lean but so far it hasn't.

Start Avocado in Existing Pot

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By 0 found this helpful
June 3, 2013

I used some material from the bag our potatoes came in and then a piece of plastic grocery bag tied around the potato bag over the jar. The avocado pit was pushed far enough down into the jar to be able to start this way.

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Videos

March 13, 20134 found this helpful

Growing an avocado plant from the pit is a great project for kids to do. It is so easy. View the full project here: Growing an Avocado Seed

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Questions

Ask a QuestionHere are the questions asked by community members. Read on to see the answers provided by the ThriftyFun community or ask a new question.

By 1 found this helpful
July 17, 2017

I dropped an avocado pit and it split in half. Can it still grow roots and a stem if I put it back in water?

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Answers

July 17, 20171 found this helpful

I think you are going to have a harder time. If the roots were already formed you would have a better chance

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By 2 found this helpful
May 27, 2016

I started my own seed in water with toothpicks. My plant is 14 inches tall now with 4 leaves at the top. I have read so many articles on this plant and my confusion is, should I cut it back to 6-7 inches to encourage gowth again to make it fuller? And I have it in indirect light on my summer porch. Can I leave it outside? Does it need sun?

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July 16, 20170 found this helpful

I have only trimmed one back and then it died. I have had probably a hundred that I never trimmed and they did fine. I have given numerous ones away.

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By 1 found this helpful
June 21, 2010

I am growing an avocado tree from seed. I did as directed and now have a great root system, but nothing coming from the top of the seed yet. Is this normal? Do I just need patience or should there already have been greens sprouting?

Hardiness Zone: 6a

By JayJay from Hopewell Junction, NY

Answer Was this helpful? 1
February 19, 20150 found this helpful

This is not an answer, but I have the same question. There is no other button for me to press in this area. But, I have the same issue with roots growing but no stems. Is this a problem? Or should there just be patience? Or is there a way to fix this if it is a problem?

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April 29, 20150 found this helpful

Same problem here. Enough roots, but stem doesn't come up. Just to add a detail. The stem side of my avocado has a large number of tiny leaves sprouting, making it look like a tiny artichoke. Another avocado pit that grew normally seems to have the same number of leaves but along a well grown stem.

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By 0 found this helpful
April 16, 2017

My avocado plant started from seed was doing well. It is about 24" high. I moved it outside for the summer and last night, a critter dug up and ate the pit. Will the plant survive with the pit gone? All else is intact. The roots are all good.

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September 5, 20110 found this helpful

How do you grow an avocado from seed?

By Cathy

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Answers

September 5, 20110 found this helpful

I would just plant it in the backyard and water it!

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September 6, 20110 found this helpful

Poke 4 toothpicks into the avocado pit, about halfway from the biggest part of the pit. Find a jar with a mouth big enough for the avocado pit. The toothpicks should balance the pit over the mouth of the jar. Now fill the jar with water so the bottom of the pit is soaking in the water. Keep the bottom of the avocado pit soaking in the water until a sprout emerges from the top of the seed. I warn you, this can take months to happen. Just keep putting more water in the jar as it evaporates, making sure to always keep the bottom of the pit in water. Once the pit sprouts, keep it in the jar and water until the sprout is about 6 inches tall, then you can plant it in dirt. This makes a nice plant/small tree, but it won't produce more avocados. Have fun.

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June 27, 20130 found this helpful

Truthfully you can skip that step (germinating the seed). Avocados have hearty seeds, simply put them in the dirt. Depending on the size of your pot you can even put three or more seeds to the same pot, close together they will give it a fuller affect.

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March 20, 20130 found this helpful

I have two trees on the go, one that I have already put in soil and one that was still in its water container. Tonight I was repotting the water one into dirt, and as I was removing the tooth picks, I accidentally broke a half off of the seed. The tree has a large tap root, and a huge root network already, and these appear undamaged so far. Have I killed my tree? Its now in soil, but I am afraid I killed it.

By Allie B.

Answer Was this helpful? Yes
March 21, 20130 found this helpful

I think if it has, roots it should be ok. At some point, the seed is unnecessary for the plant to grow. Good luck!

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April 24, 20120 found this helpful

Can I grow an avocado tree from a seed?

By dbl red

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April 24, 20120 found this helpful

Yes you can. First peel away any brown skin under running water. Next use toothpicks and push them in around the seed about 3/4 of the way up. The bottom of the seed has a round shape and the top is more pointed. Place the seed top up into a clear jar and fill with water to just above the toothpicks. Place in a sunny window. Make sure you keep the jar filled with water up to that mark. It takes a long time sometimes so be paitent and it will start to sprout a root.

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April 25, 20120 found this helpful

I'm sure you can if you are in the right climate.

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December 22, 20120 found this helpful

Yes you can. The base is the part of the avocado that has a dimple in it.

http://www.ehow  avocado-pit.html

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By 0 found this helpful
September 29, 2010

I would like to know about growing avocado pits.

Hardiness Zone: 7a

By Barbara from Richmond, VA

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September 29, 20100 found this helpful

Put 3 toothpicks in avocado, 1 on each side, so the avocado doesn't fall into the glass of water, sit the glass in the window. The seed will sprout and grow. Maybe you can do a search on the internet to see how to care for the plant if you put it in the ground. You can use it as a house plant by potting it in a planter.

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October 1, 20100 found this helpful

I have had great luck wrapping the pit in wet paper towel and putting in an open plastic baggy and putting under the dark sink cupboard for a couple of weeks and it is ready to plant in soil.

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November 4, 20100 found this helpful

My mom lives in San Jose Ca and started an avocado tree (years ago) from seed by putting it in a jar of water (with the seed held up by toothpicks) on her kitchen window sill. It's now a full size, fruit bearing tree in her back yard. Me, I'm in Co and I can't even get the seed to grow roots. I've tried several different ways and still no luck! The green thumb gene obviously past me by!

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By 0 found this helpful
February 25, 2009

I plan on growing an avocado tree or bush indoors due to the cold winters we have. Can it ever bear fruit?

Hardiness Zone: 6a


Terry from Rochester, NY

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By guest (Guest Post)
February 25, 20090 found this helpful

http://www.will  row-avocado-tree

Search for your question"growing an avocado plant inside"lot of info there.

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February 25, 20090 found this helpful

Go to Fladata.com and the university of florida can tell you. My experience is no and all the information I have found says no due to the size of the tree at fruiting and ect. I live in South Georgia and I cannot grow it outside here.

gbk

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By guest (Guest Post)
February 27, 20090 found this helpful

I don't know if you can get it to bloom & produce fruit, but a long time ago. I heard this story about this man who couldn't get his avocado tree to produce. He heard that if you beat the tree with a baseball bat. The tree thinks it's it danger & it causes it to bloom & give fruit. My sister tried this, I think & it worked. I do know that you have to have another avocado tree in the neighborhood for cross pollination. Without this, there's no chance.

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January 29, 20140 found this helpful

I have had an avocado pit in water for 5 months. It has a root, but no shoot. How long should I have to wait for a shoot, or should I toss and start over?

By Rick B.

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February 15, 20140 found this helpful

I did this too and I don't remember how long it took but I remember it took forever. I do remember that after the pit split that's when the shoot started to grow. Mine is about 2 feet tall now. My dilemma is now where to plant it as it is a very big tree.

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By 0 found this helpful
August 5, 2013

I've tried and tried over and over again. What's the proper or correct way to grow a avocado plant?

By Alexisann from Yuma, AZ

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October 21, 20130 found this helpful

I had a hard time with growing the pits by suspending them over water with toothpicks. then I put a pit into a pot 3/4 covered by soil and watered it weekly. Tada! I have repotted it now that the roots were coming through the drainage holes. I also added another pit to the pot, the stem is about 6 inches high with 5 leaves and a second stem is emerging. In nature, they fall into soil, try it! Good luck.

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By 0 found this helpful
August 18, 2015

I have a sprouted avocado seed. I went out today to buy the pot and soil. I came home and my almost 2 year old pulled off half of the root. Can I still pot it? Or should I keep it in the water to grow again?

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By 0 found this helpful
November 20, 2014

I have been growing an avocado pit suspended in a glass of water for about 8 weeks now. The pit has split and I see the beginning of a root, but now fine white hairs can be seen on the bottom of the pit. Does this happen? or is this algae? Has this happened to anyone else? I have been changing the water once a week.

By JiminyCricket

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October 7, 20140 found this helpful

I have finally sprouted an avocado "tree" from the pit! Yay! Unfortunately, during the busy summer, it has grown over 6-7" and is about 12", still in the water (not in dirt). I have time to plant it now, but am wondering if I should cut it back now, before I plant it, or if I should just leave it!?
There is quite a root system and the plant is very healthy, so I do not want to kill it before I even get it in the dirt. If anyone has any knowledge of this, I would greatly appreciate the advice. Thank you!

By Jess

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By 0 found this helpful
December 19, 2012

I have an avocado pit that grew many, many roots and what looks like multiple stems trying to form, but so far nothing after 4 months. Can I plant this and will a stem eventually shoot up?

By Shelly F.

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December 7, 20120 found this helpful

My avocado seeds are growing moulds in my potting mixture. Please what do I do about it?

By Tinu

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July 9, 20120 found this helpful

My avocado plant although looking healthy, and about one foot tall, only gets two leaves growing at one time. These die and fall off and two more leaves will grow. I have it in a pot, indoors with plenty of light and water as instructed. Would pruning help?

By Mick C.

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July 19, 20110 found this helpful

I have an avocado pit in water that has rooted, but not sprouted. Can I plant the pit now or should I wait for leaves to sprout?

By Amber

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July 13, 20110 found this helpful

How do I care for an avocado plant grown from the seed, after it has germinated?

By H McC

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