pink guava seeds

In commercial orchards, guava trees are vegetatively propagated by air layering, stem cuttings, grafting and budding. For the home grower, guava seed propagation is a great experiment just as much gardening is.

Guava trees can be grown in USDA zones 9a-10b outdoors or in USDA zone 8 and below in a pot on a sunny, covered porch through winter or in a greenhouse. Although seed grown guava doesn’t reproduce true to type, it is an economical way to grow guava and isn’t uncommon. Seeds should be planted immediately upon extracting form mature fruit.

Have you ever eaten a guava and wondered about growing guava from seed? I mean the seed is there to be grown, right? Although seed grown guava trees don’t grow true, guava seed propagation is still a fun project. The following article contains information on how to grow guava trees from seed and when to plant guava seeds.

When to Plant Guava Seeds.

Water the seeds with a misting spray and place the container in a warm place with temperatures around 65 F. (18 C.) or above. The seeds should germinate in 2-8 weeks depending upon the temperature. In cooler climates, place the pot on a seed heating pad to help maintain a consistently warm temperature and speed up germination.

Once the seeds have been soaked, fill a nursery pot with soilless seed starting mix. Press one seed into the center of the pot with your finger. Be sure to cover the seed with a bit of soilless mixture.

The first step to growing guava from seed is to break the seed dormancy. This is done in one of two ways. Either place the seeds in a pot of boiling water for 5 minutes, or soak the seeds in water for two weeks prior to planting. Both of these allow the seed coat to soften and, thus, hasten germination.

Keep an eye on the seed pot and water when needed; when the top of the soil feels dry.

How to Grow Guava Trees from Seed.

The exotically sweet guava fruits sold in larger grocery stores and fruit vendors comes from a tropical evergreen shrub or small tree that can be grown as an unusual potted plant. And it many regions, that's the only way to grow it, as this plant is very sensitive to cold and will succumb to the smallest hint of frost, especially when the plants are young.

The plant that goes by the common name pineapple guava is not a true guava at all, but is instead Feijoa sellowiana or Acca sellowiana, a member of the myrtle family. The fruit has a similar taste to true guava, but this plant is rarely, if ever, grown as an indoor potted plant.

Guava plants want as much full sun as you can give them. Move your sprouted guava to a very sunny place as soon as possible. During summer, move them outside to a sunny patio. In the winter, move inside to the brightest location possible.

Guava Care.

Guava plants like relatively humid conditions and don't grow well in desert-like environments, such as that found in outdoor Arizona. At the same time, extremely humid, jungle-like conditions can foster rust fungus on the leaves.

Guava plants are native to the tropical and subtropical Americas and will do best in conditions that mimic those regions. They like moderately warm, humid conditions and react badly to any hint of cold or to desert-like heat. Potted plants can grow well on a warm patio or deck during the warmer months, then moved indoors for the winter.

Repot your young guava every spring into a larger pot. You can keep the plant smaller with careful pruning in the early summer, thus increasing the chances of getting fruit.

To increase the chances of germination (and reduce the time), let the seeds sit in a little water for two weeks, or boil them for five minutes, then plant in a pot filled with soilless seed-starting mix. Cover the seed with just a small amount of seed-starter mix. Place the pot in a warm place (above 65 degrees Fahrenheit), and keep it moist by misting it whenever the top of the soil surface feels dry. Germination will take two to eight weeks.

The typical guava is the Psidium guajava . This plant has been in cultivation so long, it's not exactly known where it originated, and in the intervening centuries, dozens of named cultivars have been introduced. Named cultivars include 'Redland', named for a growing region in South Florida, 'Supreme', with white flesh, and 'Ruby', with light pink flesh.

In the landscape, these plants can grow to 20 feet or more in height, but as an indoor container plant, it is kept much smaller. Getting indoor guava plants to flower and produce fruit is a hit-or-miss proposition, at best, so the plants are generally grown as novelty specimens, much the way an indoor orange or fig tree is grown.

True Guava vs. Pineapple Guava.

Guavas are warm-weather plants that don't react well to cold. Young plants may succumb to even the hint of frost, so make sure to move patio plants indoors before well before the weather turns chilly. Mature plants may survive a touch of frost now and then, but only in the warmest climates can these plants remain on a patio year-round.

Guava is a shrub or small tree with a single or multi-stemmed trunk. It has mottled green bark and long, 3- to 7-inch serrated leaves that sit atop a wide, short canopy. The white flowers produce oval or pear-shaped fruits 2 to 5 inches in size. The taste and color of the fruit differ based on the variety.

The Spruce / Gyscha Rendy.

As the young plant outgrows its pot, transplant it into a large container, as needed. Guava plants will do best if you grow them in a warm location, but not in blistering heat. It can be moved outdoors to a patio when the heat of summer arrives and temperatures remain steadily above 75 degrees.

Temperature and Humidity.

Cover the pot with clear plastic, propping it up, if necessary, to keep the plastic above the leaves. Place the pot in a sunny location where temperatures remain between 75 and 80 degrees Fahrenheit. When new growth begins to appear on the cutting (it can take two to three weeks), it means that roots have begun to form. Remove the plastic at this time, and water regularly as the cutting begins to grow.

Guava can be propagated in a number of ways, including by seed, grafting, and air layering. In commercial cultivation, most guava is grafted onto an established rootstock, which helps the plant thrive and flower. If you are growing guava from seed, the plant might not produce fruit true to the parent, but the plant can still make a lovely potted specimen.

In addition to growing from seed, guavas can be propagated through softwood cuttings. Cut a 4- to 6-inch length of young, flexible stem, then remove all but the top two leaves. Dip the cut end into rooting hormone, then plant it in moistened potting mix.

The Spruce / Gyscha Rendy.

Provide guava plants with regular water during the growing season, and reduce watering somewhat during the winter.

Guava’s can be eaten fresh but are often used to flavor drinks, desserts, sauces, preserves, and many other food products.

Highly fragrant fruit usually with green or yellow skin, about the size of a baseball, with pink or white flesh. The guava is one of the most common fruits in the world and its sweet pulp is used in a wide assortment of drinks, desserts, and other food products.

Estimated germination time under optimal conditions: 4-12 weeks, though occasionally longer. Seeds often show staggered germination.

Guava seeds are of moderate difficulty to germinate. The most common stumbling block is not allowing enough time to pass for germination as guava seeds routinely need a minimum of 4-6 weeks before any possible germination. Plant seeds 1/4-1/2″ deep in moist, sterile soil. Keep soil temperature consistent at 70-85F. Cool soils will significantly delay seed germination time and soil temperatures below 60-63F will inhibit germination altogether.

Native to southern Mexico and Central America. Was long ago spread throughout the American tropics, Asia, Africa and Pacific Islands. The guava is an invasive pest species in some parts of the world, particularly on Pacific Islands.

Native Range.

Often by seeds, which remain viable for up to a year. Sprouting can take 3-8 weeks. Better varieties are propagated by grafting, air-layering and root cuttings. Warm soil temperature (70-85F) is important in germination.

A shrub or small tree, sometimes growing as high as 30ft, but usually no more than 10-15ft.

Seeds are now available at our seed store.

Guava’s grow well in full sun, except in hot regions, where partial shade is beneficial. If trying to grow in a marginal climate, plant near a building or provide some sort of protection from damaging cold winds and rain. Generally, guava’s are fairly adaptable and will flourish with little care. Flowers will self-pollinate and fruit develops in a few months. There may be multiple fruiting and flowering seasons throughout the year, depending on local climate conditions. Guava’s are shallow rooted and prefer lots of moisture throughout the year (except if cold), although they will withstand periods of drought, as well as dry seasonal changes. Keep the soil especially moist during flower and fruit set. The guava will tolerate poor soils, but grows much better when fertilized monthly, or when grown in soil that is high in organic material. They are not tolerant of salty soils.

The guava is highly adaptable to tropical and subtropical environments and can be grown outdoors as far North as the San Francisco Bay Area in California, as well as most areas of Florida and gulf coast states. Protect from temperatures below 30F, which can cause defoliation. Harder freezes will kill the plant. In cool winter areas, guava’s may partially defoliate, but should begin new growth flushes in spring and summer.

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