Bloom season is the most exciting for me when it comes to avocados. First, I look at the buds on the branches of trees to try to predict how many will become flowers. Then I observe the bees and flies visiting the flowers. Are there enough? Are the flowers getting pollinated? Finally, I search for green BBs, the sign that fruit has set and that next year will have a harvest. There’s so much hope.
Do you also enjoy this process? Is it new for you? I walked around to some of my trees this spring to show you what it all looks like from flower bud through to tiny green fruitlet. Have a watch:
Literature on avocado flowering
There is a lot that can be learned about avocado flowering. Here are five excellent articles that will teach you the basics, as well as take you into topics like flower types, cross-pollination, and pollinators.
1. Bob Bergh’s classic article: “The Remarkable Avocado Flower.”
2. Mary Lu Arpaia and Reuben Hofshi provide a glossary of terms and a list of published literature in their article: “The Avocado Flower and the Pollination-Fruitset Process: Ideas from a California Perspective.”
3. Read only the introduction of this paper for a summary of the seminal discoveries and discussions about avocado flowering over the last century: “Finding the best polliniser for ‘Hass’ avocado and the effect of honeybees as pollinators” by Bezuidenhout, du Toit, Robbertse, et al.
4. Nirody was the first to write about avocado varieties having male or female flowers at different times, and he suggested pairing trees for pollination, all in his Master’s degree thesis written exactly one hundred years ago: “Investigations in Avocado Breeding.”
5. Stout was the first to classify avocado varieties as “A” or “B” according to their flowering behavior in his paper, “A Study in Cross-Pollination of Avocados in Southern California.”
Video presentations on avocado flowering
Here you can view two comprehensive presentations by Mary Lu Arpaia, of the University of California, and Reuben Hofshi, creator of Avocadosource, about avocado flowering and pollination.
Yard Posts related to avocado flowering
You might like to check out these other posts I’ve written that are related to avocado flowering and the fruit set and fruit drop stages just after flowering:
Enjoy the bloom and fruitset season. I hope you are starting to see these:
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