Avocado trees are fast-growing, evergreen trees and are classified in the flowering plant family Lauraceae. Known for its pear-shaped fruit and made famous by the tasty dip guacamole, the avocado tree has gained popularity in home gardens. Avocado trees, native to tropical climes, can grow to around 70 feet and produce approximately 1,200 avocados per year.
Warm Temperature Avocados
Since the avocado tree is native to humid and semi-humid tropical climes, the West Indian avocados grow best in warm temperatures, from 15.6 to 29.4 degrees Celsius. Temperatures above or below are not ideal, but more established trees can tolerate colder temperatures. Young trees are more susceptible to damage, so they need protection from the frost. The fruit from these trees are huge (can weigh up to two pounds), smooth, round and glossy green.
Cool Temperature Avocados
If you are in a bit cooler climate, don't fret, the Guatemalan types of avocado trees can thrive in cooler temperatures, down to -1.11 to -3.33 degrees Celsius. The trees are hardier because they are native to cool, high-altitude tropics. Guatemalan-type trees produce medium-sized, pear-shaped, rough green avocados and turn blackish-green when ripe.
Cold Temperature Avocados
Mexican types, native to dry subtropical plateaus, thrive in a Mediterranean climate and are able to grow in lower temperatures, as low as -7.22 degrees Celsius. The fruit of the Mexican varietal are small (usually less than a pound) with very thin skins. The fruits turn glossy green or black when ripe.