It’s springtime in the avocado groves! The trees started blooming weeks ago, but by now the hills are a mass of yellow blossoms! You can hear the bees buzzing in the grove as they pollinate each tiny blossom. The tree in this photo had a few “off blooms” in January, and the fruit has already had time to grow into plum-sized avocados. This is one reason that some avocados are mature enough to pick very early in the season, and others take longer to be ready.
With such nice weather, I’ve been getting out to ride around and watch the progress of the springtime bloom! In today’s post I even have a video for you!
Weather Changes Everything
We have had some really warm weather already this year. When the temperatures get into the high 80’s and low 90’s during the month of April, it’s important to stay on top of irrigation. Don’t let those trees get stressed in the heat. Watch the weather and give them an extra drink of water. They’re busy blooming and setting new baby avocados, after all! Plus, the crop that has been growing for a whole year is probably still on the tree too. If the tree gets stressed, a new crop won’t set and the current crop may fall on the ground!
Let’s Go For a Ride!
How about a ride around the grove in the month of April? Here’s a video that’s almost like being here with me!
The crop this year is maturing earlier than in previous years. We’re not sure why … weather or changing climate or whatever. Most avocado growers are harvesting early. If you have an avocado tree, be sure to pick a few and see how long it takes them to soften. How is the flavor? If you wait too long, expecting that the fruit will be exactly the same as in other years, you may be disappointed to see the avocados falling off the trees or being overripe before you get to eat them!
Variety Makes a Difference
By now the Fuerte avocados have all been harvested. There are a few to be found in the trees, and they’re still delicious, but most of them are picked. We’re still size-picking Hass, but some of the trees have such large fruit that it’s time to just harvest them all. Reed avocados are coming in June! We have eaten a few of the Reeds, so they do soften enough to eat, but it’s still early for them. Flavor will improve next month.
Here are some cute little baby avocado trees the were just delivered on May 1st! We’re keeping them watered and they’re already showing some nice new growth. We’ll be planting them soon, taking the place of older trees that needed to be removed because they just weren’t producing well anymore. These new trees were grown on root stock that is able to withstand more salt in the water, since water in Southern California tends to be high in salts.
Happy Spring! I’m looking forward to seeing my children and grandchildren for Mother’s Day, and celebrating just being together. Farming is a 24/7 job, but we schedule time to enjoy some good food and fun times.