How to Fertilize an Avocado Tree
Avocado trees can bear healthy fruit when the tree growth has been sufficiently maintained. For avocado trees to grow healthy it’s important that they receive a balanced amount of nutrients, including nitrogen, and that they are watered properly. The tree should never receive too much water or the roots may not receive the oxygen they need for growth. When using commercial or organic fertilizer for your avocado tree it’s also important to not add more nutrients than what the soil requires.
Wait at least one year before you begin to fertilize your avocado tree. It’s not recommended to fertilize trees that are any younger, and it’s also best to fertilize between February to November.
Apply a commercial nitrogen fertilizer after the first year during the end of February. Spread a layer that is a least 1/4 inch thick over the tree bed.
Apply fertilizer again every six months when you irrigate the area. Drip emitters that produce no more than 1/2 gallon of water are recommended to keep the soil moist. If you don’t use an emitter it’s recommend that you water the area well every six weeks.
Use a nutrient foliar test by collecting a sample of soil between August and October to know the amount of nutrients and nitrogen in your soil. Use a home pH balance test or have the soil tested in a laboratory.
Continue fertilizing every six months. Consider using organic fertilizer once your tree continues to grow healthy over the years and if much nitrogen is not necessary. An example is using a 1/4 inch layer of compost, fish emulsion or coffee grounds.
Fertilizers For Avocado Trees
Avocado trees require a soil pH of 7 or below. Once planted, fertilize your avocado tree three times in the first year -- once in March, once in July and once in October. Each application of nitrogen fertilizer should amount to 1 tablespoon of nitrogen, broadcast over the soil around the tree. The amount of nitrogen you use to fertilize your avocado tree will continue to grow by 1/4 pound every year until you are using 1 pound of fertilizer, divided into three applications. You'll know if your avocado tree is suffering from an iron deficiency because the newest leaves will be green in the veins and yellow in the margins. Mulching with peat moss will also aid soil pH and supply with soil with nutrients.
- Nitrogen fertilizer
- pH balance test kit
- Organic fertilizer
- Avocado Trees: Planting and Growing Instructions
- University of Hawaii at Manoa: Avocados
- UC Cooperative Extension, Ventura County: Fertilizing Avocados
- University of California Statewide Integrated Pest Management Program: Avocado Fertilization
- University of California Statewide Integrated Pest Management Program: Fertilization
- University of Minnesota Extension: Modifying Soil pH
- University of California Cooperative Extension Service: Changing pH in Soil