Last Updated on October 8, 2022 by Real Men Sow
The avocado tree can grow to 40 feet in some parts of the West Coast and Gulf Coast of the United States. They can be grafted to produce commercial fruit. They are warm-weather, a yellow-colored plant that produces small yellow blooms. A home gardener can plant a tree using the avocado fruit pit.
Bonsai is a gardening technique that allows you to keep the plant small. This is the act of pruning and growing small trees or shrubs to look like ancient trees found in nature. Bonsai plants are often smaller than your average houseplant. An avocado pit can be used as a starting point or you can use rooted cuttings to bonsai an avocado tree.
Requirements For Bonsai Trees
A bonsai plant must be flexible, have beautiful bark, and have balanced foliage and flowers. Large leaves make the avocado tree a poor choice for bonsai gardening. You can trim the leaves and keep the branches trimmed when the tree is young. Avocado trees can grow up to 2 feet each year and eventually outgrow bonsai containers.
Sprouting the Pit
Sprouting the pit will require you three toothpicks, along with a small-mouth container filled with water and a bright window. To place the toothpicks around a pit, push them about 1/3 of the way to the bottom.
You must keep the water level high enough to submerge the seed’s bottom by 1/2 inch. In 6 weeks, the avocado pit will start to sprout. Let the plant grow to about 6 inches. To encourage root development, pinch the plant to 3 inches. After the stem has produced leaves, plant the avocado tree with rich soil to expose the top half.
Pruning Avocado Bonsais
To encourage branching, an avocado should be cut back. The plant will be shorter than usual due to pinching, which also strengthens the trunk. If you don’t trim the leaves as they grow, they will become quite large. Some of them can reach 10 inches in length. To sterilize your pruning scissors, dip them in a mixture of 1 part bleach and 9 parts water for 5 minutes. The sterile scissors can be used to trim and prune the branches.
You must pick a bonsai design for your avocado plant to ensure that your pruning cuts make a beautiful bonsai specimen. There are a variety of styles to choose from, including the formal style that has a central leader and uniform side branches, or the informal style with two or more leaders and unique side growth.
Training the Avocado Plant
You must first choose which side of your avocado plant is the front view to begin bonsai training. To train horizontal growth, you should use aluminum or copper wire that is flexible for bonsai gardening. The wire should be wrapped around the branch, but not too tightly to restrict the plant. You can bend the wire to your liking to allow the branch to grow in the desired direction.
You can also train branches using fishing lines as guide wires if you are uncomfortable with wires. Attach the fishing line to the pot by looping it around the branch. When new growth emerges, prune and train the avocado one or two times per year. To avoid tree branch girdling, replace the training wire every year.