An Abundance of Avocados

How did you celebrate Cinco de Mayo? If you carved into the green flesh of yummy avocados to make fresh guacamole, you can keep the green growing! Don’t throw away that pit, plant it.

I remember being baffled as a kid, seeing a shiny stone, pierced by toothpicks, held aloft in a juice glass of water.  How could that shiny, seemingly impenetrable pit grow into a soft, green, fleshy fruit defended by dinosaur-like skin? It’s a glimpse of magic to watch a seed sprout above ground, before your eyes. gives a great play by play for growing an avocado tree from your pit: how to gut your ‘cado without splitting the skin of the seed, how to determine which end is the “bottom” which will root in water, and which is the top, which will sprout. How to gently wash the pit (does licking it clean count?)

After taking good care of this oversized seed that will yield your yummy bounty, it’s time to stab your pit.  Using four toothpicks, Inhabitat’s Jill Fehrenbacher suggests you angle them slightly downward, wedged firmly into the pit, so that the bottom will rest easily in the water, and the toothpicks rest soundly on the rim of the glass.

Set the glass on a well-lit windowsill for the sun to do its work.  Step back, and admire your work as co-creator of a future tree.  A TREE.  This is a good time to name your seed.  (See my earlier post, Greening Your Cubicle, for my attachment issues desk plants’ name.)  If you’re like me, it never fails to amaze that I get to play a small part in helping green things grow.  And then EATING them.  (So don’t get too attached.) gives more great tips on watching and watering your avocado into full growth, and when to plant it, and how to winter with it for those of you living in colder climes.

Any other tips on growing an avocado?  Photos of trees you’ve raised from a cup of water? Or great recipes for guacamole or fresh summer salads?  Leave a comment below or tweet @thecityfarm!  And be sure to tag me @RebeccaSnavely

Happy growing!