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Avacado Seeds

Daniel Fry - 10 b
25 years ago

I am trying to grow an avacado plant in a glass of water to start it out. I dont know which end to place under the water, the pointy end or the bulb end. Your help would be greatly appreciated.

Comments (60)

  • Dianna - 7b
    24 years ago

    I put mine in, pointy side up, halfway dipped in the water with the toothpicks holding it suspended. The flat side down has split open and roots have come out of the bottom of it. I am interested in hearing from anyone who can give advice on how to best bear friut from this. Thanks ahead for the replies...

  • Cathy - 2b
    24 years ago

    My avocado seed has sprouted in water after a very long time. How long should the little root be before I plant it and how deep should I plant it? Is sand and a soil mix be a good thing to use when planting? Thanks in advance for your response.

  • Jenny Pierce
    24 years ago

    I tried germinating 2 seeds at the same time, one with the skin and the other without, in the glass suspended from toothpicks. I kept them both partially immersed, and in about 2-3 weeks the skinless seed seemed to split a little and the other had done nothing. I ignored them both for about a week and came back to find the water had evaporated quite a bit, but the split seed sent out a root which was in the water. The skin seed still has done nothing.

    Does anyone know when the gender of the plant is determined? Is it at the seed stage, or does something occur during growth that makes the plant fruit bearing?

  • Bonnie Kossart
    24 years ago

    What kind of a tree do you have to graft an avacado tree to. So that it will bear fruit or will it bear fruit on it's own.

  • Cal Ledbetter
    24 years ago

    Where do most avacado trees grow? I have a friend trying to grow one in Wisconsin and is trying to find more about them.

  • jean
    24 years ago

    Avocado can grow just about anywhere.

    If outdoors, they must be in a frost-free climate. If in pots, they can be brought indoors for the winter. In pots, they will grow more slowly, be much more open and ``leggy,'' and are unlikely to bear fruit.


  • Cal Ledbetter
    24 years ago

    If kept in a flower pot inside all the time aprox. how big will one get?
    Should it be put out side sometimes for the air and sunlight?
    I've unleashed a monster. More questions will most likely follow. Thanks

  • Tara Chestnut
    24 years ago

    I have grown my first avacado tree with a little help from the magazine "Organic Gardening" and a little bit of luck. Per the magazine,I planted the seed in a pot and kept moist in a sunny window. After roughly 2 months, it finally sprouted. I just need more info on how to keep my plant eating house cat at bay (are they poisonous?) and what to do with it in the summer (I live in Northeast PA). Are there special pots or soils to use to help it get bigger? As you can see, I have no clue about most green things, but I am very EXCITED to have finally grown a live plant. I have tried herbs and mini rosebushes to no avail. Don't ask what became of them PLEASE.

    If anyone has ANY info to help me: magazines,websites etc
    let me know. E-mail me at above address, I check all the time.


  • Bo Beckham - 7b
    23 years ago

    Daniel, It's a year late, but for posterity sake I'll add my two cents. I planted mine pointy end down. The "top" bulb end split and out came the trunk or two trunks in one case. I don't remember the time it took, a few week to a month I think. In water, near an East faceing window. Reading thru the list it looks like it doesn't matter which end.

  • Vinh
    23 years ago

    daniel, have you had any success?

    it is very easy to sprout and grow. i just bury it in the ground and about two or three months later it come us.

  • chris - florida
    23 years ago

    I bought 2-medium sized avacado's recently and they were the best I had ever tasted. They were imported from the Dominican Republic. Having no idea how to even begin to grow one I visited this site and after short consultation conversation with my Cuban born parents (one of whom I may add had a huge Avacado tree that when a hurricane hit it in the late 60's only split apart and then produced fruit from both sides) I am going to try and plant my lonely little seed (my other seed was thrown away by mistake)in a small ceramic pot and will be loving watered and kept on my kitchen windowsill with the hope and the prayer that it will sprout and some day bear the same kind of luscious treat that I just enjoyed.
    Wish me an avacado green thumb!

  • Sam - Florida
    23 years ago

    I have simply placed the Avocado seed in the ground. It took about 1 year, and I had a tree, at least 15' high now, loaded with Avocados. However, does anyone know how long it takes for them to be ripe enough to pick? My tree got caught in the freeze one year, but came back and even grew another large shoot. Please email me back. I like to give them to my family, if I knew how long it takes for the fruit to ripen.

  • Donna - 8b
    23 years ago

    Mine sprouted after about 10 days in water, I potted it up and 2 months later is is about 15 inches tall.

    Here is a link that might be useful: avocado tree from seed

  • David - 8 or 9 (san antonio,
    23 years ago

    Ok, this is going to sound completely mornoic. But here it goes. I want to grow avacado, mostly cause I love the fruit. I am new at this. Never used to garden but started this year. What and where do I get the seed for this. (be very detailed, remember I'm new at this) Do I get the seed from the avacado itself. The bone in the middle of it? Ok, once I have this, how do I polinate, germinate, whatever I need to do. Does it need alot of sun, and water? Or little at all of either. Whats this about cutting the seed and putting a leaf in it? Sounds to me your hurting the poor thing. (ok, be nice) HELP ME! My Fajitas are waiting for a good avacado.

  • Pat - 08876
    23 years ago

    i am generally a "murderer of green things"... not on purpose, I LOVE PLANTS, i just somehow over - do or under - do everything instinctually... :)
    However... I took an avacado pit, let it dry out for a day or so (to peel the outer "skin" off), scored the larger end in an "X" with a knife, poked in some toothpicks (about 1/2 way up)and balanced it over a glass filled with water. As long as the bottom was in the water, it sprouted.
    6 weeks later, I have a 12" plant with 8" roots and NO IDEA how to plant it!!!
    I've helped someone sprout, HELP ME PLANT... please :)
    I'm not sure how I got to this site, so if you have an answer please email your suggestions!

  • Claude Sweet - 9A
    23 years ago

    Steps to growing an avocado:

    1. Purchase a nice firm avocado fruit

    2. Do NOT store it in your refrigerator to ripen it - use a brown paper bag and keep it out of the direct sun. You can place a banana or pear in the bag to release ethylene gas, a natural ripening agent

    3. Remove the soft ripe avocado pulp (flesh) from around the seed and eat it.

    4. Wash the pulp off the seed and pat dry. You may slice off an 1/8 of an inch of the pointed top - some claim it helps the vegetate shoots emerge from between the two haves of the seed. Optional - remove the paper thin, brown seed coat.

    5. Select washed paper 1/2 gallon milk carton that has holes punched in the bottom for drainage and the top of the carton trimmed off. Fill with a well draining potting mix like SuperSoil.

    6. Plant the avocado seed with the flat end down. Cover the seed or leave the top slightly exposed in makes no difference to the germinating seed , but many people like to see the activity of the shoot emerging from the seed.

    7. Bottom heat of 70 degrees F. helps speed up the germination process.

    8. Provide strong light to full sun depending on your climate and the time of year. We grow them outdoors in full sun, but the light through a window and magnify the effects of the sun and can burn the tender young foliage.

    9. Avocados are naturally large trees reaching 40 feet tall and some cultivars will be as wide as tall when they reach maturity. Other selections are tall and narrow. Only the Mexican avocado is a small tree/large shrub and suited to being grown as a house plant.

    Getting a seedling to flower and fruit is another problem that is addressed elsewhere in this forum.

    Growing the seed in water is a great children's science project, but the roots must be acclimated to soil which is a transition that commercial avocado growers do not employ.

    Claude Sweet
    San Diego, CA

  • ron wardlow
    23 years ago

    I moved to Pasadena California in 1996 and planted an avacado tree I had been growing in a large planter in the house. It was hitting the ceiling and we put it out in the yard in nice sun and it now has about a 3-4 inch trunk and is about 18 feet tall but no fruit. How do I get it to produce? Someone told me to drive 3 rusty nails in the trunk and it would start bearing fruit. (what do you think)
    Thanks in advance,

  • Paul Reno
    22 years ago

    My avocado seed has sprouted in water after a very long time. How long should the little root be before I plant it and how deep should I plant it? Is sand and a soil mix be a good thing to use when planting? Thanks in advance for your response

  • Lyriclover
    21 years ago

    Upstate NY is not the place to grow avacado outdoors. I have been growing them since I was 15. I have 2 right now. My oldest is about 10 years, youngest is 1 year. Both grown from avacado seeds after hubby ate fruit. Both plants stay in the house over winter, they would never make it thru winter here outside. They are both 6 feet tall. I keep them in large containers, put them outdoors in the late spring, bring them in late summer, early fall. A chore, but I love them, and their lush foliage is beautiful.
    Water them every few days to avoid browning edges on leaves.
    they don't like to be dry, or too wet either. I mist them on occasion, and clean their leaves to remove dust during the harsh winter months being in a dry heated house. I have noticed when they are outdoors, the hiney-pinchers love to eat the leaves, so I check often, as do the daddy-long-legs.

    I have accepted the fact they will not produce fruit. I was told you needed two to cross pollinate, but it is my understanding that they need to be planted in the ground for them to grow up to 30 feet tall. I can't plant them in the ground, by fall they would be dead, and winter would finish the roots. So I will accept them as they are, and keep them in their pots, and bring them in and out, and enjoy them. I have grown them as tall as 10 feet, then the ceiling gets too low! :-) Good luck!

  • natalie
    21 years ago

    My avacado tree is 8 months now and 20 inches tall. I live in northern Alberta which is in Canada and of course he will be an indoor plant except in the scorching summer. My concern is that this past week he has been dropping leaves. He has been repotted and he is under a growing lamp. He is getting water. My mango is doing fine who sits right next to him, so I wonder if anyone can explain what I am doing wrong.

  • captzane
    21 years ago

    I'm new... first time on this website. So I'm sorry if this question sounds stupid.

    I read all of the postings, but where are the answers?


  • barrieplants
    20 years ago

    natalie, i'm going to start two avacados tomorrow but noticed you have a mango also. how did you get that going? just curious. thanks.

  • ellie63
    20 years ago

    Hi all
    I want to start a few fruit bearing trees, can you start them just from the seed? and if so what is the best way? or do you have to have a certin kind of seed or plant for them to be fruit bearing? and if so where do I find them. I live in Arkansas so I would have to grow them in big pots so I could move them inside in cold weather, can they bee grown this way to produce fruit? Thanks for any help and info any of you have. PS. this is in regards to the avacado tree. :^)

  • Laurie16
    20 years ago

    I have never planted Avocado seeds before, but I have time now to try. After a "Cinco de Mayo" office party I have seven Avocado seeds to plant. One I already have in a glass of water, another in a pot outdoors, another very soon will be wrapped in a wet paper towel and tossed under my sink. I will try to be just as creative with the rest. Thanks to you all for your great suggestions and for the great links. I will let you all know which works the best. Anyone into betting which does best?


  • trudi_d
    20 years ago

    Here's our FAQ on Growing your Own Avocado Tree

    Here is a link that might be useful: Avocado FAQ

  • Laurie16
    20 years ago

    Here is a little update on my Avocado seeds. The one that seems to be sprouting the fastest is one in a cup of water supported by tooth picks with the dark outer layer removed (in water only 1 wk). The seed has split quite a bit. The seed in soil (almost a month now) with the outerlayer still on, has split very slightly. Another seed in water with the outer covering on, has not done anything (since 1 1/2 weeks). I am too afraid to look at the one in a wet papertowel under my sink. I am sure it is too early to check and I do not want to disturb it:).

    Hope this interests someone.


  • Laurie16
    20 years ago

    One more thing to add to my note, all the seeds were planted or placed in water with the pointy end up.

  • Laurie16
    19 years ago

    Hello my gardening friends,

    I was asked to give an update on my avocado experiment (hi, Teri!). I have to say there was a tragedy for two seeds. The dog found them and they either became lunch or are buried in the backyard somewhere. I will let you all know when Avocado trees grows in the middle of my yard. All I can say about them now is that they were in water with toothpicks and beginning to split after about 4 weeks. I started one with the "skin" on and two with it off. I ended up removing the skin on all of them, because the skinless ones split faster, and the skin began to fall off the other one while it was in the water. I now have only one in water, it has split, but no sprouts (after almost 7 weeks).

    I got up the nerve to look under my sink. I was amazed! the seed was split and sprouting after only 3-4 weeks (skin off). I planted this seed in soil with another seed I had planted back around May 10th directly into the soil. That seed (planted right into soil), like the one in water, has taken 7 weeks just to split open (no sprouts yet). I have put two more seeds in wet papertowels under the sink (skin off), hoping these will sprout just as quickly.

    If speed is your goal, so far the under the sink method works best, but it is not as fun as watching it spilt and eventually sprout in water. How much patience do your little ones have??

  • ddore
    18 years ago

    I put a Hass seed into a 6" pot of potting soil, with the top of the seed just under the surface and set it on my deck rail in late July or early August. About a week or two later,I noticed a sprout as the weather began to cool I brought it inside. It's now the middle of December and there are twin shoots about 15" tall. Not sure what will happen but it is interesting plant with droopy leaves. Can't wait till spring when warm weather will allow it outside again.

    By the way I'm in western NC so I don't think it would survive outside year 'round, so I guess I'll have a patio Avacado. Hmmm an 18' patio plant and only 8' ceilings! Help!

  • origami_master
    18 years ago

    If you want a speedy growth from your bseed, i suggest you do it the natural way. Buy an avocado and let it get really ripe. Even better, let the avocado get really ripe, then bury it in your yard. The seed would have sprouted so mush in so little time you won't believe it. I tried the traditional toothpick on a glass method but it took way too long! I suggest you don't try the rotting method at home as it will stink up the room and attract a lot of flys.
    P.S. don't forget to cover the place which you put the avacodo in with a mesh net or else flys will lay their eggs and it's bye bye to the fruit tree! good luck

  • CALIgRoWeR
    17 years ago

    I have a problem with sprouting avocado seeds, I have tried the water and tooth pick method but everytime my seed gets a crack in it and then it gets really dark brown and eventually gets moldy and splits apart is there something impiticular that is wrong?! I think that I am going to try just planting it in dirt or with a paper towel in a baggie. Is there a really productive way that you germinate avacado seeds other than the methods listed above?! Not to mention that I live in a area that in summer temps can reach 115 F.

  • bananas4you
    17 years ago

    So, just to get it straight, when putting it in water/soil to grow, the pointy end goes up right? :)

  • lizby
    17 years ago

    Hi! Here's a very helpful website that might help set some things straight. I'm sure that there are several successful ways to grow these, but this one looks pretty tried and true. I'm at the "root coming out the bottom of the seed" stage (usuing the glass of water method). Here's the website:

    Good luck! ~liz

  • lizby
    17 years ago

    Oops... PS, Yes, bananas4you, as far as I know, the pointy end goes up - that's how most things of that shape go (ie. bulbs, garlic, etc.) and mine's pointy-end up and working just fine. Thanks to everyone else, by the way, for all the great avacado-growing info! ~liz

  • shealeigh
    16 years ago

    My Grandfather grew Avacados in California, and these are the instructions he gave to me as a little girl.

    Remove the large seed from the center of the fruit and wash it in water (the broad end of the seed is considered to be the bottom.). Insert several toothpicks into the sides of the seed. They should be placed about halfway up the pit. Then suspend the seed in a glass of water. The bottom one fourth of the seed should rest in water.
    The seed should sprout within a few weeks. Periodically add water. The roots are usually the first to emerge from the seed. The stem appears later. Pot the seedling when the root system has become well developed; the roots should be at least 2 to 3 inches long.
    Remove the toothpicks and plant into a 6 to 8 inch pot using a commercial potting mix. Position the seed in the center of the pot. The top of the seed should be level with the soil surface. After potting, water thoroughly, then place the plant in a brightly lit location. A location near an east or west window is ideal. Water the plant regularly. Keep the soil moist, but not wet. Fertilize once or twice a month during the spring and summer with a houseplant fertilizer.
    Avocado plants grow rapidly. Remember, the avocado is actually a tree. It will never produce fruit indoors as it may take 20 or more years to bear fruit unless you are lucky! Keep in mind sometimes you will come across a "Bad Seed" and they will not sprout, just toss it and start again.

  • floridabonsaiguy
    16 years ago

    Requirements for germinating an avacado seed is VERY easy!!! The following materials needed are: YOU WILL NEED DOUBLE OF EVERYTHING IF YOU WILL BE WANTING YOUR TREE TO PRODUCE FRUIT!! 3-4 toothpicks, some type of container to hold water (water will be about 4" deep - beverage glass works fine), clean, dry avacado seed (brown paper skin on outside is optional ((peel it off or leave it - dosen't matter) and patience!!!
    Evenly spacing, pierce seed with toothpics about 1/2" deep about 1/2 way between top and bottom. PLACE THE NATURAL SPLIT END OF THE SEED "UP"!!! Is best if you do not use non-chlorinated water; add water (about 3-4" deep - enough that water line is "just under" toothpicks (replintish was as necessary - never letting waterline evaporate past bottom of seed. Place in indirect sun location (eastern exposure). Roots should begin to appear anywhere from 2 wks. to 6 wks. Change water if you see it starting to get "yucky". Continue germinating in same container until there is about a 6"-8" green stem emerging. Plant entire seed approx. 3" deep (from top of seed) in regular potting soil (3 gal. size pot is perfect!!) Firm the soil around plant. Water till moist. Graduate plant to FULL Sun. Fertilize with most any type of all purpose fertilizer. Call a nursery or local Garden Center for more info. on this. To produce fruit: tree needs to be at least 6 months old for GRAFTING. Grafting is an absolute must unless you want to wait up to 20 years for fruit!! Grafting will allow you fruit as quick as 2 years. Refer to "how to graft fruit trees" on Google for instructions. The grafting process looks alot scarier than it actually is so don't be afraid!!! Once tree is too large for the pot, plant it in the ground. Avacado trees can get as tall as 25' high and they have MASSIVE root systems. DON'T PLANT THEM ANYWHERE CLOSE TO UNDERGROUND WATER PIPES OR SEPTIC TANKS!!!!! In early years, try to protect them from freezing as they are semi-tropical plants.
    Hope this info helps.

  • toejoe
    16 years ago

    If you want to plant it for fun, beauty & experimentation, go ahead...if you want it for fruit, in my humble opinion, it makes more sense to buy one. Not all trees from seed produce fruit & when they do it takes YEARS longer & doesn't taste as good.

    IÂve heard tho that you can start an avocado from seed then graft  so if you have a fruit with an avocado treeÂI canÂt figure out how to graft thoÂ, it seems mighty confusing.

    "...seedling trees rarely produce fruits as tasty as those on commercial trees, which are grafted to good-tasting cultivars."

  • david_thomas
    16 years ago

    I am trying to grow an avacado plant in a glass of water to start it out. I dont know which end to place under the water, the pointy end or the bulb end. Your help would be greatly appreciated.

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  • johnnyapollo
    15 years ago

    I have an avocado plant I started a few months ago. It is about 16+ inches tall now. Just a stalk with some little leaves on top and a few tiny ones here and there along the stalk. Kinda pathetic I think...but its growing. I thought I read somewhere that you should cut it back some at this stage to make it bush or something.... Maybe to 8"? Is this true? Searched thru some posts and can't find anything...

  • killgriff07
    15 years ago

    Found a site with information on what you were talking about.
    Hope it helps.

    Info is at the bottom of the page

  • hvnbndwarriorprinces
    15 years ago

    I know of a web site where you can buy avocado trees that produce fruit. It is: The tree is called "Gillogly Avocado tree". It is a dwarf tree that can be grown indoors or outdoors and it will produce fruit (guaranteed with sufficient water & light) in 1 year and 1/2. It cost approximately $50. But when you think about the cost of avocado's it is a small investment for a lifetime of fruit. I confess I am sprouting my own right now but after reading & finding out my tree will never bear fruit. It's not worth the trouble unless you're doing it for kids or you are a new gardener.

  • darren_146
    14 years ago

    Does anyone know what to do about mold on your avocado seed? Mine appears to have fuzzy whitish gray fluff near the water. Will this affect the growth and if so how can I get rid of it?
    PS It's been in a cup of water for about 2 weeks now with the pointy side up and with the skin on, but it hasn't split yet...

  • takadi
    14 years ago

    Will frost permanently kill an avocado tree or will it just go dormant and come back?

  • skayc1
    12 years ago

    I tried to grow avocado pits in water, they rotted. So I wrapped the pits in a damp paper towel, after carefully removing the skin from the pit, and placed in a ziplock baggie. after roots started growing and the pits had cracked, I planted some in a well draining soil in self-watering containers that I made. so far I've got two seedlings beginning to grow leaves, and three more with stems coming up.

  • ASnyder0914
    11 years ago

    how do i start my own question?? I am growing an avocado tree in water and I need to know the best soil/ pot to transfer it into.

  • old_eagle
    10 years ago

    I did not have time to read all the posts but can contribute. I have successfully raised and given away several avocado trees using the toothpick method but have found a better way. Seal the cleaned seed in a ziplock bag with a wet paper towel. Lay it in a place where you can see it daily. It takes some time to sprout. When the root emerges, put it in a pot with the root end down. Water it once per week. That is all. It will flourish.
    I do have a question though. When can the seed be removed? I had a tree about two feet tall that I put outside. A squirrel ate the seed that was still attached and severed the trunk of the tree which suddenly died.
    Since I now have three seedlings in my office, I need help before I put them outside.

  • shaneatwell
    10 years ago

    This thread blows me away. Its 15yrs old. Did gibby88 seriously say he got fruit from a 1yr old tree grown from seed? Or did he mean that it took a year to sprout and now (presumably several years later) its 15' and loaded?

    "I have simply placed the Avocado seed in the ground. It took about 1 year, and I had a tree, at least 15' high now, loaded with Avocados."

  • johnzendrac16
    8 years ago

    My family and I are also planning to plant avocado in our backyard, aside from being delicious this is so nutritious. :)

  • Mowvember
    8 years ago

    My wife has just started growing avocados unsuccessfully. I showed her this thread and now they are starting to sprout! Thanks for all the awesome information.