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Question: 690-512
How can I start an avocado indoors? Katie, Marquette. MI

Mort's Answer:
Avocados can be hung over water. Take the large seed and suspend it with four toothpicks barely touching the water underneath. Use distilled water for best results. The jar of water should have enough space at the mouth to accommodate the picks and seed. Place the jar in a south facing window. Water should be added as it evaporates to keep the seed and water just touching. Roots should be an inch long before transplanting to a five inch clay pot. The new soil needs to be a third coarse sand and good potting soil.

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Question: 834-4112
My avocado is growing too tall in my greenhouse. It is growing in the soil. When can I transplant it? I have not had great luck in the past. I usually do not fertilize and they rarely bear fruit. Jack, Austin, TX

Mort's Answer:
I would wait another month for cooler weather to dig it up. In the meantime, You can root prune the avocado to produce good fibrous small roots to insure a transplant. Cut down straight through the roots n a circle about two feet from the trunk. The new hole should be 50% larger than the root ball. Avocados need rich soil with a sense of humus. Your new soil should have two-thirds aged manure and peat and your present soil. Heavy mulching will also help. Persea americana needs company and good fertility. New hybrids will self pollinate. Older varieties need cross pollination of different plants. Mexican and Guatemalan races do cross better in Texas and California.

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