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The Avocado Plant (Persea americana) is a broadleaf evergreen tree easily recognized by the popular fruit that it produces, but it has also grown in popularity in recent years as a leafy houseplant.
They're originally from southern Mexico, but are now found all over the world.
In their native environment, Avocado trees can grow very large - up to 60 feet (18 m) tall! As a potted plant, they'll stay much smaller and can be further pruned to keep them at a manageable size.
Avocado Plants like warmth and light, and as such won't do well in colder areas. However, they make great indoor houseplants (although note that it can be very difficult to get an indoor Avocado Plant to produce fruits).
Place it somewhere in your home with full sunlight, such as a bright, warm windowsill. These plants love sunshine!
They also like moisture - water when the top layer of soil feels dry to the touch. Ideally, the soil should be kept consistently moist, although it's also very important to make sure you don't let it become overly wet. Too much water can lead to yellowing of the leaves, so if you start to notice this then it's a good idea to hold off on watering.
Avocado Plants are often grown from seed. You can do this yourself at home - just take the avocado pit, wash it off and allow it to dry. Then, you can place it either directly in potting soil or in water. Putting it in water will allow you to more easily monitor whether it has successfully sprouted or not.
If using the water method, you can use toothpicks to suspend the pit in the jar of water. Place it in a sunny, warm spot and change the water for clean water every now and then. Over time, it should hopefully start to sprout roots and eventually a stem. Once the roots are sturdy and long and the stem has started to produce leaves, you can then plant it into soil. You have yourself a brand new Avocado Plant!
You may notice small white nodules start to form - this was first thought to be due to a virus, but research shows that it most likely is actually a result of fruits having been harvested too early: the nodules are essentially seedlings that are produced in response to the fruit being harvested before reaching a certain stage of maturity.