Avocados in 9b

Having the extra land is great in one respect. You have no need to limit your selections. Even just an acre and you can plant hundreds. The new issue such abundance brings up is water. Fortunately, I’m on a well so don’t have to be concerned with the cost. But if you are on municipal water, especially in California where rain is scarce 8 months of the year, you can easily spend a few thousand dollars a year on irrigation. When your fruit starts to cost 3 times what you could pay for it in the store, the law of diminishing returns rears its ugly head.

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I have spread my orcharding wings a bit on my mom’s nearby property. No avocados up there yet, but, if I don’t need to “settle” for cold hardy avocados at my place, that might be a good place to plant out the Mexicola and friends. She’s on a well :+1:

Chiming in on Mexicola fruit flavor profile. I’m in town up here in St. Helena on a small farmhouse lot. I have a 9 foot Bacon, a 7 foot Mexicola and a 5 foot Lamb. The Mexicola is the only one that has fruited so far, with two fruits last summer. They were surprisingly delicious, and I’m a picky eater, preferring mostly Hass/ GEM fruit over others. The fruit was dense, full of nutty flavor, creamy, with some anise hints. No strings and the seed was on the smaller side. Definitely looking forward to trying them again. I wasn’t sure I would like the Mexicola flavor, so I am very pleased to learn that I like it. Hoping the Lamb does not disappoint, but will be delighted if it even fruits due to our cooler winter temps and hotter summers. Definitely pushing the zone up here, but playing it as safe as I can with raised beds on the Bacon and Mexicola and planting the Lamb on a mound against the house with a Southwestern facing orientation. Fingers crossed that all three trees continue to grow well despite the challenges here. Would love to be growing in Napa or back in Santa Rosa, our home before St. Helena.


Do you know what nursery the tree came from? I think there are multiple distinct cultivars being sold as “Mexicola” by different nurseries. Your fruit sounds like the ones I got from Marta, which were the same as the ones she shows on her blog here, and I agree that they are one of my favorite avocados in terms of flavor and texture:

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The tree is large and vigorous. I planted my tree in 2001 on the northwest corner of my house. It started producing in 3-4 years after planting. The fruits are black, small, very flavorful, creamy and nutty with soft edible skin.


Swincher, yes, my Mexicola came from Gary Gragg’s nursery Golden Gate palms in Richmond. It sounds like the same tree from a different source? Thank you for linking Marta’s blog about cold hardy avocados. I read that article a while ago, but it’s always good to refresh my memory. I have tried looking for the Second Red Avocado tree on Second Street in Santa Rosa several times with no success, in the hopes of being granted Scion wood for grafting. I’m hoping that perhaps one of the future Scion exchanges will have it on offer. It would be fantastic to try that one in my area.


I heard that it’s in a parking lot for a medical building next to some dumpsters, assuming no one has removed the ortet yet. I doubt you need to ask permission if you can find it. I don’t know the exact location though.

Thanks. I have two trees and thought about a Mexicola but now that you mentioned an anise flavor I’m definitely not getting any Mexican cold hardy avocados without tasting them first since I dislike black licorice. Weird but not surprising since that’s a good way to identify a Mexican avocado tree by squeezing the leaves and smelling for anise.

I’ve never noticed that flavor in the flesh, but sometimes in the skin, if you eat it along with the flesh, as is often recommended for Mexican types.


Thanks that makes sense. So avoid the skin!

I went on a hunt for the Second Red Avo Tree today. Found it! I was able to get a bunch of cuttings, too, though I’m not sure if it’s too late in the season to graft them. But I will try. I have plenty to share if anyone is nearby and interested.


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I’d love 1 or 2!

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It looks like you hit the reply button before the photo uploaded, in case you want to try again. Was it a photo of the tree?

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Just the treasure trove of the cuttings. I was about to photograph the tree but the office building had a security camera that suddenly sounded an alarm.:rofl: So I had to scoot.
Not sure why the photo isn’t loading properly, could be an iPhone thing. I may try again later on my laptop.

Let me know if you can come up here for the cuttings, Aaron, since my auto is currently at the shop until mid next week.

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Looks like it was only just starting to extend the flower panicles, not yet open, at least on the branches you cut. I would have expected it to be a little further along!

Yes, and it looked to me like the leaf buds were starting to swell and push, so I’m hoping that the grafts I did today might actually take. But just in case the cold temps don’t allow them to, I’ve got a bunch of scions ready to go in the fridge. I’ll graft those in a few days once this cold snap has passed.

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