I eat a lot of avocados.
Truth be told, I probably eat more avocados than any other single fruit or vegetable, except maybe bananas or pizza.
This means I end up with a lot of avocado pits.
This past summer, I did a little research, to see if there was anything I could do with an avocado pit after the rest of the avocado had been eaten. Someone – possibly my girlfriend – told me I should try to grow an avocado tree.
So I did. They are easy to grow, if you happen to have a pit which has within it the spark of life. Perhaps 9 times out of 10 the pit will sit there and shrivel and get slimy. But O, that tenth time!
I have managed, in the last eight months, to sprout three avocado trees. The first one was this past summer. After the roots looked good and long I transplanted it into a pot out on my front porch. When I got home from work, the plant was gone and there were SQUIRREL FOOTPRINTS in the soil in the pot.
Round about the end of summer another seed germinated. This one I kept inside, and at the moment the plant is about eighteen inches tall, green, leafy and – as far as I can tell – happy and healthy. This one is staying inside until it is too big to be eaten by any of the local wildlife.
This past weekend, I noticed that one of the seeds sitting in the kitchen window had begun to grow.
This is how I start the seeds. All it takes is a small jar, three toothpicks, a sunny window, and some patience.
That little nubbin coming out of the bottom of the pit is a root. In another couple of weeks a small stem will sprout from the top of the avocado, and then, once it begins to grow a couple of leaves, it will be time to put it in a pot.
If you want to try this yourself, I recommend using the seeds from organically-grown avocados, rather than the big supermarket chains, although this might not make any difference. Don’t expect to have fruit bearing trees any time in the next decade, and then only if you have several trees in the same space. This is definitely a labor of love.