Salt Burn in Avocado Trees

6 Jul

My avocado trees are my pride and joy. If I could choose any of my fruit trees to succeed, I think it would be these ones. Avocados from the shop are so hit and miss and it’s so difficult to keep a reliable supply up. Home grown avocados on the other hand can just be stored on the tree and picked on demand, ripening on the bench after a few days.

Well that’s the theory.

Brown tips on my Wurtz Avocado

In practice, my avocados have a problem. Their tips are browning, and I was totally stumped as to why. I’ve been paranoid about root rot, so totally not overwatering, and the potting mix is definitely not dry, so I didn’t think I was under-watering either. Sydney has been cold, but I’m sure my back deck hasn’t had any frost, so I didn’t think it was cold damage either.

I sent a message to Daleys, asking what they think the problem is and their answer was intriguing.

Salt Burn. Caused by not watering thoroughly enough.

Apparently avocados are particularly sensitive to chloride, and if you put them in potting mix the salts build up quickly. I need to water them infrequently but thoroughly, to wash the salts out of the soil.

Of course.

How the hell is the average punter gonna know that?

So I’ve put the hose onto them for about 10 minutes each, washing through the soil thoroughly.

Next thing they’ll tell me I have an orange juice deficiency. Or I haven’t belly danced around them lately.

This gardening caper is baffling sometimes.

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3 Responses to “Salt Burn in Avocado Trees”

  1. Sarah July 6, 2011 at 6:35 pm #

    I just had a mental image of J dancing round the tree with ribbons 🙂

  2. The New Good Life July 6, 2011 at 6:50 pm #

    Well I’ve heard of a rain dance, never an avocado dance but I’d try just about anything to succeed in some of my gardening exploits and if I could grow avocados down here in the south by doing a belly dance I’d be donning the scarves and anklets and wiggling the hips for dear life.

    • L July 6, 2011 at 10:37 pm #

      Well Louis Glowinski lives in Melbourne, and he grows avocados. Actually he says they are so easy to grow that every backyard should have one. I reckon you should give it a go 🙂

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