Avocados have become a popular super-food all across the world in recent times. A lot of recipes are available online to use avocado in form of smoothies, dips, or salads. Considering the nutrients we get from this green fruit, it is truly a superfood and should be a staple in every kitchen where it is easily available.
Health Benefits of Avocado
- It is a rich source of Potassium. Potassium helps to regulate nerve function and move nutrients into the cell while taking away the waste. It also helps in regulating blood pressure.
- It is packed with monounsaturated fats which are the unsaturated fats that help in lowering the LDL without affecting the good HDL cholesterol.
- They are high in Fiber. Foods high in fiber are good for people looking to lose weight.
- Avocados are rich in folate. Folate is a B vitamin that is important for the brain and having a healthy pregnancy. Folate can help prevent birth defects, specifically those that affect a baby’s brain and spine, during the early weeks of pregnancy.
How to Grow Avocado tree from a Seed
Considering the health benefits of this green superfood, it would be amazing if could have our own avocado tree in the garden. Well, it is possible. You can grow your own avocado tree from the seed in very easy steps. Check out the following steps to learn how to grow an avocado tree from a seed.
1. Remove and clean the pit
To start, first, we need to remove the pit from the avocado. This step needs to be done very carefully without removing the brown skin on the pit as it is the seed cover.
2. Locating the ends of the pit
Avocado pits are of different shapes and sizes. Some may be round, while some may be oval. But every pit has its bottom and the top part. The top part is from where the sprout will grow, hence it is important that you identify the part so that you can place your bottom part, which will be the root end, in the water. So observe the pit carefully and check for a slightly pointed part, which will be the top, while the part which is flat will be the bottom of the pit.
3. Piercing with toothpicks
Take 3-4 toothpicks and insert them around the outer edges of the seed at a slight downwards angle and spaced evenly around the circumference of the avocado seed. These toothpicks will allow suspending the seed in a glass of water hence they need to be very firmly placed.
4. Placing the avocado on the glass of water
The next step is to place the seed in a glass of water. Take a clear glass and fill it with water and place the seeds in such a way that the bottom part is half-submerged into the water. Take care to change the water every 5 days to prevent the water to become stagnant and developing molds, bacteria, or fungus.
5. Wait for the seed to sprout
According to some guides, the seeds may take 2-4 weeks or sometimes even up to 8 weeks to sprout. So do not worry if the seed is taking time to sprout. Have patience and watch the little shoot coming out of the seeds in the next few weeks. Just take care the tap roots coming out of the seeds are always submerged in the water or else they may dry out and the plant will be dead.
6. Pruning and Potting
When the avocado stem grows 6 or 7 inches tall, cut it back to 3 inches. This causes the plant to branch and becomes bushy. As new leaves appear, the root will thicken. When the plant is 6 inches tall again, plant the seed in a 10-inch-wide pot with commercial potting soil. Bury the bottom half of the seed; the top half should stick out of the soil. Place on a sunny windowsill. Avocados love the sun – the more sun the better.
7. Water the plant
Water the plant frequently with an occasional deep soak. The soil should always be moist, but not saturated. If you find yellowing leaves, do not water for a few days and let the soil dry.
8. Pinching out the top leaves
When the stem reaches 12 inches tall, pinch out the top two sets of leaves. This will encourage the plant to grow side shoots and more leaves, making it bushy. Each time the plant grows another 6 inches pinch out the 2 newest sets of leaves on top.
9. Watch your plant grow
Just have fun watching your plant grow inches by inches and the new shoots coming out of it. The question remains is when the tree will fruit. Well, this is really hard to say. Sometimes avocado plants will begin growing fruit after they’re 3 or 4 years old, others take 15+ years to grow fruit, and some never do. So instead of worrying about the fruiting, just have the fun of taking care of it and watching it grow.
- If leaves turn yellow, you may be overwatering. Allow the soil to dry more before watering to avoid drowning the plant.
- Keep an eye out for aphids. Remove them from plants with a gentle spray of water (outside or in the sink or shower). Spray insecticidal soap or neem oil to keep aphids from returning.o keep aphids from returning.
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