My friend who was in culinary school introduced us to the easy but angel-chorus-cuing combination of crusty bread, slices of fresh avocado, a squeeze of lemon, and a sprinkle of fleur de sel long before avocado toast was a thing. However the avocados of my childhood weren’t just for eating. With my grandmother’s help, we turned our pits into plants. Here’s how you can too.
Growing an indoor avocado plant is simply a matter of rooting and sprouting its pit. It’s not going to bear fruit, but you’re going to have a free and cute little new houseplant. Here’s how to start one:
How to Plant an Avocado Seed
- Once your avocado is finished, wash and dry the pit.
- Fill your jar with water, almost to the brim.
- Locate the wide end of the pit. This is the end that’s going to point down into the water.
- Press three toothpicks around the pit. They’re going to suspend the pit from the rim of the jar. Position the toothpicks so about one inch of the avocado pit is in the water.
- Place the pot in a dry, sunny spot, but out of direct sunlight. The window sill is ideal.
- Refill the water as needed.
- Your pit should start growing roots and stems in two to six weeks.
- If you don’t see any progress for eight weeks, begin with another pit.
- Once the stem has reached to about six or seven inches tall, cut it back by half.
- When the roots have grown thick and the stem has leaves again, plant it in a pot of about ten inches in diameter, leaving half of the seed still exposed above the soil.
Avocado Plant Care
- Keep your avocado plant in a warm, sun kissed location.
- Water frequently with an occasional deep soak. Keep the plant moist but not overly saturated. As with most plants, make sure the pot has holes to drain well.
- Cut the stem back every time your plant grows another six inches or so, in order to encourage a healthier appearance.
- If you live in a warm-enough climate, plant your tree outside once it’s big enough. In time (and we’re talking in many years), it might actually bear fruit.
Do you want to miss all of this and head straight to a big avocado tree? You should skip forward a few years and purchase a 3-foot-tall avocado plant from Amazon instead.