Avocado trees have shallow roots. Its feeder roots are in the first six inches of soil. They require excellent aeration to thrive and a lot of garden space. They need full sun to produce large fruits, and the soil is the most important factor for fruit growth.
They can be grown both in a garden, yard or as an indoor container plant. Each way of planting them comes with special considerations when it comes to the needs of the soil.
Things to Consider When Selecting Soil If Grown Outdoors
These types of trees do well in loose, well-aerated soil. Decomposed granite, sandy loam, and limestone are the best at encouraging good fruit growth. While avocado trees can withstand both alkaline and acidic soils, the best pH is between 6 and 6.5.
You can balance the pH by adding sulfur, lime, or calcium carbonate periodically with the soil. The soil should also not be compacted as it will hamper root spread. The tree will not grow well and may undergo root rot.
Also, ensure that the avocado tree receives direct sunlight and has 30-40 feet between other plants/trees on all sides to ensure proper growth as the tree matures. Also, avoid planting them in clay soils as they will not survive.
Avocado trees do well in loose soil composed of decomposed granite or sandy loam for proper drainage. Excess moisture damages plants and contributes to root rot. You can also place wood chips and leaves on top of the soil to protect the roots from overheating and give nutrients to the tree.
The avocado tree needs soil that drains well. If the roots have too much moisture, the tree will not be healthy. The result will be low amounts of fruit and branches dying. Even though there may be watering concerns, conditions that are slightly dry cause the tree to thrive.
If a handful of soil has a granular texture and has been dry for several days, you can water it. Soil that looks wet and muddy will harm the tree.
Salt is a natural component in soil but can be an issue for avocado trees if they are highly concentrated. If the tips of the avocado’s leaves are brown or look sunburnt, there may be a high concentration of salt in the soil.
If you water the tree consistently, the concentration should level out and generate good health for the tree. You can clear the salt from the soil by watering it deeply and slowly.
However, if you planted the tree close to the ocean where the salt content is high from the air, controlling the amount of salt in the soil becomes difficult. Then, you will need to mindfully watch the leaves to ensure the soil environment is healthy for the tree.
Considerations for Avocados Grown in Containers
Should you choose to grow the avocado tree in a container, the soil should contain a combination of specialized mixtures, especially for avocados and some soil from your existing garden. A scaled-back soil environment may trap moisture in it that encourages root rot. The best way to avoid this is to place thirsty flowers below the tree to equalize the water and soil ratios.
Watering the tree in a container should be similar to one planted in a garden. To create a mature tree, progressively transplant it into larger containers as it gets bigger will help it to become a stronger, healthier tree.
The pot should be about ten inches wide, and you should wash it with soap and water before filling it with potting soil. The temperature indoors should be between 60-85°F with a humidity of 50%.
The Best Soils for Tree Growth
If you are growing it indoors, choose a potting mix created for houseplants. The container needs to have drainage holes with a deep saucer for excess water and/or soil that drains well. If you grow them outdoors, place them in an area wherein they will receive the humidity and warmth of the sun with the protection of shade provided by taller trees.
This potting soil comes in a 40-quart packet and is ready to use. It has excellent aeration and is adjusted to a pH level of 6.3- 6.8, making it perfect for an avocado tree. This soil is specially formulated to grow seedlings and young plants.
This type of soil drains well and is ideal for novice users. The coconut coir behaves like a small sponge, making it porous, but the composition of this soil eliminates the potential for mold or fungus growth. If you are just new to growing avocado trees, then this is the soil you should first purchase.
Use this soil after the seeds or pits have sprouted. Each batch is hand blended to make sure the growing environment is ideal for the tree. It is quick draining to eliminate the possibility of root rot, making it the best possible environment for the tree to grow. Perlite and horticulture sand was added to a peat mixture to shed water quickly and allow for proper airflow.
It is fertilizer and chemical-free.
Since the avocado roots do not go deep into the ground, this potting soil allows the nutrients to come to the tree. This soil improves nutrient uptake and root efficiency. It can be used for trees planted in a container.
When planting an avocado tree, the soil needs to absorb moisture, drain properly, and have the proper pH level. Soil that doesn’t have good drainage will expose the roots to root rot and not provide the proper nutrients for the tree to do well.
Since these trees have shallow roots, you need to ensure they are getting the proper nutrients. Do this by giving them nutrient-rich food or fertilizer for their growth. You can add wood chips or leaves to the top as well. These will eventually decompose into the soil allowing the tree to absorb its nutrients.
The nutrients required in an avocado tree are nitrogen, potassium, zinc, and phosphorus, found in most fertilizers. This, in conjunction with mulch, will help the tree to grow.
Soil for avocado trees comes in both synthetic and organic forms. They are rich in earthworm castings, sea-going fish and crab meal, bat guano, and forest humus, providing the proper pH level for the trees to thrive in.