Click here to learn about the importance of A and B pollinator types.
Note that the photo is of a Hass avocado.
Planting Location and Planting Steps
Avocado trees can be grown in containers for a few years, and indoors as foliage plants. For successful fruit production, they are best grown in the ground in well drained soil, in sunny, wind free locations. Do not plant a new avocado tree in a space where an old tree had died as the soil may be contaminated. If you have heavy clay soil, we recommend planting your avocado tree in a raised bed (12-18”). Avocados have a very sensitive root system and all care should be taken when removing the plant from the pot. Have your transplanting hole or container prepared in advance ready to receive the avocado tree. Cut the pot on opposite sides to peel back the container from the root and soil mass. Do not disturb the root in any way! Plant above the grade, on a mound, as is recommended for many other trees.
In containers, avocados need consistent and frequent watering. Avocados in the ground prefer infrequent deep root watering. It is best to allow trees to somewhat dry out before you apply water again, to avoid root rot. Test your soil before each watering to determine the best rate of application for your location.
To help retain soil moisture and improve soil quality, apply a 3 to 4 inch layer of mulch in spring and fall under the canopy of the tree, keeping the mulch away from the trunk of the tree.
Pinching and Pruning
Avocados can be maintained to any size with pinching and pruning. Frequent pinching of young trees is a good method to shape the tree, rather than heavy pruning. Prune to shape and control size on larger trees. Avocado trees can be susceptible to sunburn on the trunks of newly pruned trees so you can whitewash with interior white latex paint, diluted 50-50 with water during periods of high summer heat and intense sunshine.
Avocado trees should be fed on a regular basis. Fertilize with well balanced citrus/avocado food using the manufacturer’s recommendations. Avocado trees that have been fed year-round are better able to deal with cold temperatures in the winter.
When expecting a freeze, frost protection should be used. If trees are small enough then a frost cloth can be framed around the young tree. Christmas lights or landscape lights can be incorporated for best results. Controlling the size of the tree for the home gardener is important in maintaining a reasonable shape to make frost protection possible.
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