Avocado Growth Stages: 6 Phrases of Life

Avocado growth stages are a fascinating journey of transformation that this beloved fruit undergoes, from the very moment it emerges as a blossom to the day it ripens into a creamy delight.

avocado growth stages

Getting to know these avocado growth stages isn’t just a treat for plant lovers – it’s a must if you’re nurturing your very own avocado grove.

While it might seem like a bit of a waiting game, with some avocado trees taking as long as 15 years to yield fruit. But fear not!

In this article, we’ll explore different avocado growth stages, providing you with valuable insights into this tropical mainstay.

Conditions for Growing Avocado

Growing avocados successfully requires the right conditions.

These fruit trees thrive in warm climates, typically found in USDA zones 9 to 11. However, certain cultivars can tolerate slightly cooler zone 8 regions.

In warmer climates, avocados make excellent landscape plantings, while cool-climate gardeners can grow smaller varieties in containers, though fruit production is rare.

avocado growth stages

To ensure optimal growth, your avocado tree needs a sunny location with well-draining soil.

Sandy soil is highly recommended, and a pH level between 5.0 and 7.0 is essential.

Avocado trees require about 2 inches of water per week, with young trees needing more to thrive.

Deep and infrequent irrigation helps saturate the entire root system.

Fertilizing throughout the growing season, preferably with an NPK ratio of 2-1-1, will yield the best results.

The Growth Stages of an Avocado Tree

Avocado trees come in various varieties, with the popular ‘Hass’ reaching heights of 20 feet, while the dwarf cultivar ‘Wurtz’ grows to about 10 feet.

When grown from seed, it generally takes 13 to 15 years for avocado trees to bear fruit.

However, if you’re eager to enjoy your own avocados sooner, starting with a grafted nursery sapling can yield fruit in as little as 3 to 4 years after planting.

avocado growth stages

1. Seed Germination

Avocado trees grow from large pits or seeds found within the fruit. Germination usually takes place within 30 to 60 days at temperatures above 60°F.

During this stage, the pit splits, allowing the primary root and stems to emerge.

Some avocado varieties are polyembryonic, producing seeds with multiple embryos.

However, only one sprout will carry genetic material from both parents, while the others will be exact clones of the mother tree.

2. Seedlings

Each avocado tree begins life with two cotyledons, which are proto-leaves that develop within the seed embryo.

Unlike many plant species, avocado cotyledons remain inside the seed coating, acting as an energy source for the seedling’s initial growth.

The seedling works to produce its first ‘true’ leaves before the cotyledons shed.

avocado growth stages

3. Vegetative Growth

Once established, avocado trees can grow impressively, adding up to 30 to 36 inches in height per year.

As they mature, they develop wider trunks and an abundance of oblong leaves measuring 4 to 12 inches long.

As evergreens, avocado trees retain their foliage throughout the year, with leaves occasionally dropping and being replaced.

4. Flowering

Avocado trees typically begin flowering after reaching maturity.

Flower development is triggered by a dormancy period with temperatures averaging between 32 and 45°F.

Avocado flowers bloom in panicles, ranging in color from green to yellow or cream.

avocado growth stages
Avocado flowers

5. Pollination

Successful pollination is crucial for avocado fruit production. It usually requires the presence of at least two trees in close proximity.

Pollination occurs when insects or the wind transfer pollen from a male-functioning flower to a female-functioning one.

While the flowers possess both male and female reproductive systems, these parts do not function simultaneously.

The female half operates when the flower opens, while the male half releases pollen later.

6. Fruit Development

Once pollination occurs, the ovary inside the flower swells, and the fruit begins to take shape.

Each panicle contains several individual flowers, resulting in the formation of multiple avocado fruits on a single stem.

avocado growth stages

When to Harvest Avocado

On average, it takes about 250 days (or approximately 8 months) for an avocado fruit to mature.

It is common practice to harvest avocados when slightly immature and allow them to ripen off the tree.

The University of California suggests starting by harvesting the largest avocados and checking their quality.

If they ripen well, the rest of the tree’s fruits are usually ready for picking too.

Now you have a better understanding of the growth stages of an avocado tree.

Patience is key, but the rewards of having your own avocado supply are worth the wait.

So get started on creating your little avocado paradise, and enjoy the bountiful harvest in due time.

avocado growth stages

FAQs: Avocado Growth Stages

What is the average lifespan of an avocado tree?

In the wild, avocado trees can live for 200 to 400 years. However, in home landscapes, the average lifespan tends to be around 50 years.

How long does it take for an avocado to be fully grown?

If you are starting some a seed, you’ll have to wait over a decade for it to fully mature. Usually, the tree might take 13 years to reach full development.

How long can avocados stay on the tree after it has grown to size?

Depending on the weather, you avocados can remain on the tree up to 3 weeks.

What is the longest period avocados may take to mature on the tree?

Avocado fruits are slow growers, so you might have to wait up to a year for them to really come into side if the tree is not receiving enough nutrients for faster development.