How to Grow a Guava Tree From Seed
Guava is a tropical plant that thrives in dry climates, but plenty of moisture is beneficial to the tree as well and too much drought can diminish fruit size and quality.
The fruit tree is versatile in its soil tolerance, as it thrives in clay, sand, gravel, limestone and many other soils and tolerates both acidic and alkaline soils.
Low temperatures of 60 F or less can slow the tree's growth, while temperatures of 27 to 28 F can kill developing seedlings.
Guava trees are ideal for the home landscape as they offer continuous fruit production and are tolerant of a range of soil conditions. This tropical fruit is recognized by its yellow or green rind and sweet, juicy, pink-colored flesh, which is used to make jellies and other sweets. Guava trees are often propagated from cuttings or grafting. Seed propagation results in unique trees that are not true to their parent, so it may not be used for commercial cultivation. Guava trees reach no more than 20 to 30 feet in height, and you can prune them to control their size.
Remove guava seeds from fruit and clean thoroughly in water. Seeds may germinate best if planted soon after removal.
Place seeds in a bowl of water and let soak for two weeks prior to plant. Alternatively, as a quick method of starting seeds, boil them for five minutes in a pot of water. These steps will boost germination speed.
Prepare a germinating medium consisting of sand or equal parts sand and topsoil and place in pots or directly in a soil bed. Plant seeds 1 to 1 1/2 inches apart and 1/4-inch deep. Provide plenty of water to keep soil moist.
Transplant seedlings into larger pots when they develop their first set of true leaves. Carefully remove them, along with their root system, and place in individual pots containing clay loam soil and compost.
Prepare a final growing location for the guava trees that contains rich, well-drained and deep soil and is located in full sun exposure. Place trees at least 33 feet apart for full production, but you can plant them as close as 16 feet, although they will produce less fruit. The trees thrive in a temperature range of 73 to 82 F.
Harvest fruit when it sets, about two to four years after planting seeds, although it sometimes takes as long as eight years. Providing plenty of moisture during the fruiting season will ensure high-quality fruit.
Carly Fiske has been writing professionally since 2009. She writes for websites including greenanswers.com, openoffer.com and thirdage.com. Fiske holds a Bachelor of Arts in cultural anthropology from the University of Redlands.