Avocados are one of the most versatile fruits ever, with a ton of health benefits that make them appealing to plant in your own garden. They can be part of sweet desserts, savory dishes, or eaten on their own! And let’s not forget the infamous avocado toast!
However, planting your own avocado tree can take quite a lot of effort, and they are a bit fussy, particularly in where they want to grow. This has many people wonder, ‘can you grow avocados in North Carolina?’
Read on to learn more!
Can You Grow Avocados in North Carolina?
Avocados are native of Mexico and South America, so it’s no surprise to learn that avocados thrive and grow more in warmer, sunnier locations. When grown outdoors, avocado trees can grow up to 40 feet tall, requiring warm temperatures and only mild winters to survive and continue bearing fruit.
They are considered subtropical understory trees, used to the warm weather and semi-humid climate. Because of this, they would grow better in U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) plant hardiness zones 8-11. If in any other zones, they may not do well.
Depending on the variety, avocados can survive temperatures of 19-33 degrees F, but that is the coldest it can take. The minimum temperatures avocados can thrive on when in zone 8 is between 10-20 degrees F.
If avocado trees are planted in areas where they experience extreme heat from summers or chilliest frosts and winds, they end up dying. Avocado trees require moderate temperatures all year round, though some varieties may be cold hardier than others. Furthermore, they require regular watering to thrive and produce fruit, suffering if it experiences drought.
So when talking about North Carolina, which is part of USDA zones 5-8, it may be a bit of a hassle trying to grow avocado trees. Usually, avocados are grown commercially in states California, Florida, and Hawaii, along with Mexico and the Dominican Republic.
With that in mind, it is still possible to grow avocados in North Carolina, provided that you do so indoors. With the controlled environment, temperature, humidity, water, and light source, they can thrive with quality soil and fertilizer. You can pot the avocado tree and take it indoors once winter arrives.
If ever you are growing an avocado tree outdoors and the temperatures threaten to dip below what’s recommended, you can still save your plants by placing freeze cloth over them and to keep the surrounding area of your tree out to the drip line away of weeds, which would hold the cold. Furthermore, you can mulch your plants above their graft unions, protecting the rootstocks and grafts from cold winds and frost.
If you want to learn more about growing avocados in containers when living in a colder climate, here is a helpful video you can refer to:
Wrapping It Up
When you think of avocados, Unfortunately, might be thinking of warmer climates, which is where this particular fruit thrives. Unfortunately, it may not thrive as well in North Carolina compared to warmer states, but it’s still possible to grow them like potted plants. As long as you keep them in a controlled environment where temperatures are warmer, then you can successfully grow them in your state, though requiring more effort.
I hope that this article answered your question, “can you grow avocados in North Carolina?” Now that you know the answer, be sure to prepare ahead and get all the requirements that avocados need to grow before you start planting them.