Avocado in gritty mix

flashAU(8)May 22, 2013

I'm planning on re-potting an avocado in Al's gritty mix this weekend. I have my Turface, I have my "fines", I have my granite and I have my Dyna-Gro. When I get ready to re-pot, do I need to clean the "soil" off of the roots completely? I've read to keep it out of the sun while it adjusts, but other than that, I'm not sure what to do. I'm really pretty new to this, so any advice on this would be appreciated.

Also, I want to put it in a whiskey barrel. I know I need to drill holes for drainage, but how many and what size holes would be appropriate? Should I put landscape fabric in the bottom to prevent the mix from falling out? I'm really excited to try the mix. My poor avocado is not happy right now and I'm hoping the gritty mix will help the tree and will allow me to better take care of it.

I've also got a Meyer Lemon and Key Lime that I would like to do the same. The Meyer has lemons and I don't want to re--pot it right now because of that. When would be the best time to re-pot these?

Thanks,
Thomas...

This post was edited by flashAU on Thu, May 23, 13 at 15:35

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tapla (mid-MI z5b-6a)

Timing can be very important. It's rather late for you to be bare-rooting trees that are in leaf. For you, repotting both plants would be better in late Fed. I'm thinking that if you DO bare-root now, you're going to need to reduce the canopy a LOT so the roots can keep up with the moisture needs of the top. That's pretty much a non issue if you do your repotting in the early spring. Then, the tree utilizes internal chemical messengers to tell it how many newly opened buds the roots can/cannot support, and as new roots come on line, more buds are activated.

You might want to consider doing some minor root work and (only) potting up - into a soil similar to what the trees are in now, and utilizing some temporary strategies that will help you work around any potential issues that might arise from excess water retention.

Al

    Bookmark   May 23, 2013 at 5:43PM
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greenman28 NorCal 7b/8a

I would use a plastic mesh to keep the mix from falling through the holes.

Re-potting an avocado has been quite traumatic on the tree in my experience. Each time I re-pot, the avocado seems like it's going to die. Massive leaf-loss and slow, sulky recovery.

If you bare-root the avocado, you must have your mix prepared and pre-moistened. Then you must work quickly, keeping the roots moist. Keep the tree in a shady area, and be very attentive to the moisture needs - this most likely means careful watering to keep the root-zone moist while the tree adjusts.

I haven't yet found a "good" time to re-pot an avocado...but I'm still searching ;-)

Josh

    Bookmark   May 23, 2013 at 7:09PM
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flashAU(8)

Thank you for the advice. I won't plan on bare rooting it this year and wait unitl February or March to repot everything. For the time being, I will just pot up with the whiskey barrel planter.

    Bookmark   May 23, 2013 at 9:05PM
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greenman28 NorCal 7b/8a

A good idea, I think.

The Citrus are best re-potted in early Spring between flushes of growth.

The avocado is best worked on around the Summer Solstice, although Al will correct me on that if wrong. I'm not very confident working on my own plant....and even less confident giving others advice. I just want you to be prepared for how poorly the avocado might react.

Josh

    Bookmark   May 24, 2013 at 1:31AM
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