Sunday, September 07, 2008

Growing Avocados

In about 1980, when I lived in Spokane, I grew an avocado tree from a seed. Actually, it was probably my husband who grew it. I vaguely remember him teaching me the proper way to poke toothpicks into the seed so it can sit half-submerged in water. Like this:

That seed sprouted, and we planted it in a pot. Unfortunately, our cats liked the avocado tree. Every time it set out leaf buds, the cats nibbled them off. The tree kept growing, and the cats kept nibbling, until we had a stick about ten inches tall. Then Wickersham, the black-and-white cat, curled his big self in the avocado pot and snapped the stick at dirt level. I've tried dozens of times, but I haven't been able to get anything more than a slimy avocado seed since.

Until now.

My daughter did the toothpick-poking this time. We have a taproot, and some smaller roots are starting to grow.

And the slightest nub of a sprout has begun to poke out the top.

When the seedling gets bigger, we'll put it in a pot for a while and keep it inside by a window, so I can take care of it. I stink at yard work, so I'm hesitant to plant it outside.

Good thing I don't have cats.


Malott said...

"Good thing I don't have cats."

It's always a good thing not to have cats.

Tsofah said...

Congrats on getting the seed to germinate!

Me? I, too, end up with slimy avocado pits.

The WordSmith from Nantucket said...

I remember my parents doing this when I was little.

I hate the taste of avocados, btw. It made me gag as a kid and never had it since being able to make my own decisions about the vegetables I eat.

Bekah said...

I'm truly impressed that you made it even this far with the project! I have a plant that is growing out of control (I have to prop it against a wall to keep it from falling over) and I have seen the whole process of clipping off a piece and growing roots - but I'm scared I'm just going to end up killing the whole plant entirely! So it just continues to grow out of control. You're my hero.

And as the advocate for the feline population - though they may be challenging, cats are still wonderful ;)