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A forum for growing rare fruits, edibles and Permaculture with a focus on tropicals.

What's the fastest growing inland-hardy avocado cultivar?

Postby barathr » Sun Oct 04, 2015 9:09 am

barathr
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I'm planting what will eventually be a multi-grafted mother avocado tree in the Concord area (i.e. warm/hot summers and a few frosty days each winter, but not too severe), and want to have the tree mainly be some cold-hardy variety that is vigorous. The rootstock is going to be a Duke seedling, and it's going to be in-ground. What is a vigorous cold-hardy variety that grows fast in the central valley / inland areas? Mexicola? Duke? Something else?

I've only planted avocados in coastal areas before and the considerations are fairly different.

Re: What's the fastest growing inland-hardy avocado cultivar

Postby Brian » Sun Oct 04, 2015 12:03 pm

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So I actually looked into this a while ago although never did it. Hopefully someone will chime in if my info isn't accurate or I said something wrong.

Mexicola may be the hardiest of the common commercially available trees in CA. Although when you think about it it's very unlikely they just happened to find the most cold hardy tree so I'm sure you can find one somewhere with a few more degrees of cold hardiness. I had toyed with using this as my main tree.

Then I looked at stuff on the East Coast. It looks like they have some varieties that might be more cold hardy, BUT as most of us know a cold snap in the East/Gulf area is not the same as one in CA where the ground tempertures/day temperatures arn't going to shoot back up in the same way.

Then I looked at stuff in the Santa Rosa/Sonoma area. Ultimately I think this is the best bet for a long term cold tolerant avo gene pool. I even heard of a tree north of Santa Rosa although it apparently is non-fruiting at this point.

Re: What's the fastest growing inland-hardy avocado cultivar

Postby Jack, Nipomo » Sun Oct 04, 2015 1:04 pm

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http://www.citrustreesnola.com/whats_new_2.html

Check out the Aravaipa avocado on the link. Stories about its growth and hardiness to heat and cold are interesting. I have seen photos of the original tree with snow covered ground. Don't notice phenomenal growth on my tree, but it was just grafted a few years ago. It has flowered, but no fruit set. In fact, I have no idea on fruit quality, but could be a good rootstock for less hardy trees.

Re: What's the fastest growing inland-hardy avocado cultivar

Postby barathr » Sun Oct 04, 2015 8:54 pm

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Brian, thanks for the suggestion of going with Mexicola. That's definitely my backup option.

Jack, the story behind that tree is great! I had heard something about a special AZ avocado variety but hadn't read the story.

The spot I'm planting in, in an average winter, probably won't go below 26 F and in an extreme winter probably not below 23 F, because it's next to a building. So extreme cold hardiness of isn't really needed -- no need to go with Joey or Poncho, which are claimed to withstand down to 15 F. But what's really desirable for this to be a mother tree is super fast growth in the hot Concord summers so that I get lots of graftable branches/shoots quickly. I noticed that Guatemalan cultivars like Hellen and Holiday stopped growing during the hottest 2-3 months, when highs were in the mid 90s to low 100s.

-Barath

Re: What's the fastest growing inland-hardy avocado cultivar

Postby RobertS » Mon Oct 05, 2015 3:15 pm

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How about looking into Fuerte or Stewart both are doing well for me! I like Mexicola Grande at first I didn't like M.G. but lately have been love in it much more edible meat that Mexicola which I like too!

Re: What's the fastest growing inland-hardy avocado cultivar

Postby barathr » Mon Oct 05, 2015 7:31 pm

barathr
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I guess Mexicola and Fuerte are the winners then. I'll plan to go with those two for now. Thanks!

Re: What's the fastest growing inland-hardy avocado cultivar

Postby silverdave1 » Sun Oct 18, 2015 8:45 pm

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There are probably folks more knowledgeable than I, but I wanted to chime in on your avocado planting. I hope that is going well, and am doing something similar in Marin. I looked into the Fuerte, and opted against it because, according to some of our avocado experts down in Santa Cruz, the flowering of the Fuerte is inconsistent below 45 degrees (even though the tree itself may be hardy). That's why many Fuertes in the SF Bay Area tend to produce inconsistently, as flowering time (Feb-April) usually offers temps that dip below that range.

For pairing against a Mexicola tree in our chillier North Bay climate, I opted for a Bacon and Jim Bacon. I'll still see some frost damage if temperatures dip at or below 24 degrees, but know of folks in areas far frostier than my own 'hood (Sonoma County), who are collecting these in handfuls with happy success.

My .02.... best of luck, and happy guacamole making!

Re: What's the fastest growing inland-hardy avocado cultivar

Postby Ed of Somis » Mon Oct 19, 2015 1:36 pm

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I know Jack knows his stuff...so you can never go wrong with his advice. One thing you might consider also is tree form. Bacon is a pretty cold-hearty tree that has an upright growth habit. On the other hand...Fuerte is an aggressive grower that spreads wide. Just another angle to consider... Ed

Re: What's the fastest growing inland-hardy avocado cultivar

Postby Laaz » Tue Oct 20, 2015 9:15 am

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There are quite a few that are very hardy. http://www.chestnuthilltreefarm.com/store/c/41-Cold-Hardy-Avocados.aspx

Re: What's the fastest growing inland-hardy avocado cultivar

Postby pachinko799 » Sat Oct 24, 2015 12:05 pm

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My Sir Prize took 24 degrees with very little leaf damage and I'm in San Mateo. My Fuerte did too but had more leaf damage than Sir Prize. I don't think most of the cold hardy Mexican varieties taste very good. I ripped out my bacon and zutano a few years ago. Fibers and watery avo's are gross. I know people have had success with Guatemalan varieties out there in Contra Costa. My Sir Prize grew super fast but did not fruit for five years since it put all it's energy into growth. You may want to look into it.

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