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need advice on an avacado plant

Gardening Reference » Gardening in 2004
by deb789 on May 10, 2004 05:56 PM
I got an Avacado tree grown from seed It has 6 new leaves in a container. How much water does it need? How much sun? How long will it take to bear fruit? Do i leave it on the container or plant in the ground?  -
by Will Creed on May 11, 2004 03:55 AM
Hi Deb,

Avocados need lots of sunlight so put it in your sunniest windowsill. Keep temperatures above 65 degrees at all times and keep the avocado out of cold drafts.

Avocados need soil that never gets too dry. It is best to water thoroughly and then wait until the top inch of soil feels dry before watering thoroughly again. Don't keep the soil constantly wet, however. Because your plant is in a large pot, you must be careful not to over water because all the excess soil will retain water for a long time and the risk of root rot is greater in a large pot. Alternatively, you could move your plant into a 6" pot which is more suitable for a newly rooted avocado.

When you find that your avocado is drying out enough to need water every two to three days, then it may be time to move it into a pot one size larger. Use either a soilless potting mix or a soil mix with lots of peat moss and perlite added.

If you use a soilless mix, then fertilize at half strength monthly. Soil based mixes do not fertilizer for about one year following repotting. Any liquid fertilizer will be fine.

Check the undersides of leaves regularly for signs of spider mites. These tiny critters appear as little specks of dust. Treat them with a spray solution of soap and water.

Avocados are fast growers that tend to grow straight up without branches. To encourage a fuller plant with sideshoots, you must pinch off new leaves as they emerge. It is better to start this pinching before the plant gets tall and leggy looking.

Some people move their avocados outside in the summer to provide more light. I don't particularly advise this because old leaves do not adapt well to an increase in light. In addition, avocados do not like temps below 65 degrees. If you do move yours outside, keep it shaded from the direct sun at all times and keep an eye on the nighttime thermometer.

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