I’m getting ready to plant my first avocado tree.
What’s the best size for the raised bed? I see people growing them in 2x2, 3x3, 4x4 and 5x5 foot beds – between 6 inches and 18 inches in height. What’s best?
I’m going to place hardware cloth under the raised bed because of the
excessive gopher and vole activity in my area.
What kind of Avocado tree are you talking? I think you can grow a Gem or Little Cado(Wurtz) in a 5’x5’ fairly easy. Maybe even a Reed or Pinkerton. That’s what I’m planning to do in spring.
A Hass or Fuerte grow pretty big so I’d go a lot larger.
I’ll probably mound my trees up about 2’ because they’re in tall 15g containers now but I see guys growing 10” with success.
Maybe if you’re satisfied with a few fruits from a stressed plant. Not if you want a crop or a long-term tree.
There’s a few people growing them in large containers that fruit ok and look healthy. Also there’s a few here not far in the Bay Area with limited space that grow multiple trees in 3’x10’ strips with surprisingly large prolific healthy avocado trees. I feel like if you have the space always give them the most. I’d love an 8’x8’ plot but don’t have the real estate like you. Btw your property and trees are gorgeous. @Richard
This is a good demonstration of mounding to plant an avocado tree (without a raised bed).
When I visited their small farm, all of their trees are planted on such mounds and were very healthy.
In my limited experience, most of the root issues can be averted by planting a few seeds in the place you want the tree and grafting the seedling later. It does take longer for the seeds to germinate (8-12 months) and the seedling to grow (probably 1 more year), but undisturbed seedlings with intact taproots are much less sensitive to the root problems.
Ellen is a treasure of Avocado knowledge and very helpful. I definitely would like to see the property.
That’s exactly what I’ve been doing. Seedling avocado trees establish much more readily than grafted ones for curious reasons. They almost thrive on neglect. So I’ve been planting seedlings or letting volunteer seedlings grow in place, and after about a year, hit them with a cleft graft.
My assumption is undisturbed taproot. There have been cases when I tried to pull out the seeds that haven’t pushed out top growth in 5-6 months, thinking they are just lying there. It was so hard to pull them out from the soil because they have already sent out established taproots. By the time we see shoot emerging the root is well-established.
This is exactly my experience too. I have over-watered some, completely ignored others, sun/shade, type of soil - the seedlings are super adapted. Whereas the grafted trees are so sensitive to every small change in sun, soil, watering, fertilization, etc.