What is wrong with this avocado tree?

sjp8987October 17, 2010


My boyfriend is trying to grow an avocado tree in a pot and it's been looking not-so-great lately. We're in Houston, inside 610. Tree gets full sun and regular watering (tree is allowed to dry completely before new water) It is in cactus/citrus soil that drains fast. Is the problem bugs? fungus? acidity?

I'm sorry I was having trouble uploading pics here. If you wouldn't mind copy and pasting the links below, i'd be grateful!






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The tip burn looks like fertilizer burn to me. you didn't mention how long it's been in the current container, or how often its being fertilized. What variety is it? was it started from a seed from the store? etc. The other thing I'd be concerned about is salt build-up in the soil. (this is a problem with almost all container grown plants) one thing that can be done if salts are suspect, is to replace the entire growing medium, giving the "root ball" a good bath during soil replacement as well. Hope this helps!

    Bookmark   October 19, 2010 at 8:06AM
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Hi Jerry, ,

Sorry I left out some info. It's only been in its container for about 6 months and it is not being fertilized other than what was already in it's Miracle Gro Cactus potting mix.I'm sorry I don't know the variety and it was bought as a 4 foot tall plant from a nursery in the area.

Does that give you any more information?


    Bookmark   October 29, 2010 at 8:31AM
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roselee z8b S.W. Texas

The plant looks vigorous except for the burnt leaf tips. I don't have experience with growing avocados but am guessing that the plant has outgrown its pot (as Jerry alludes to above) and needs a larger container so the roots can grow and support the top growth. The articles below say to transplant avacodos into a larger pot when the roots fill the pot it is in. Suggested sizes are anywhere from 24 to 36 inches in diameter and at least 18 inches deep. A five dollar water meter would be good to have to check the soil moisture in several places in the pot. Sometimes the root ball can become so thick and dense the water doesn't penetrate the soil and runs out the sides of the pot.

Wishing you the best with your tree. Let us know how it does.

Here is a link that might be useful: Articles about growing avacados in a pot ...

    Bookmark   October 29, 2010 at 9:22AM
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Why are you growing it in a pot in Houston? They grow great there in the ground and produce fruit. I think everyone on the island died in Hurricane Ike, I can't find any that survived. Before the Rita mine was over 30' tall and produced fabulous avocadoes. Rita killed it by ripping off the branches and breaking the trunk.
Tally HO!

    Bookmark   October 29, 2010 at 10:47AM
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Hi Beachplant,

Thanks for your response. The reason it's being grown in a pot is because it's my boyfriend's tree and where he is living now is not his permanent location and he's worried if he plants it he won't be able to transplant it - let us know if we're mistaken! It seems silly that he would even want an avocado tree but it was on sale and he figured what the heck. If he gets some avocados next season he'll be thrilled!

On that note, What kind of protection should we give it over the winter? I need to see what variety it is but do you think a sheet over it if it's supposed to freeze will be sufficient?


    Bookmark   October 29, 2010 at 11:03AM
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