Hass Avocado Grow Guide

A cluster of mature and ripe Hass Avocados on the tree
Image Credit: Avoha Avocados

There’s a reason why the Hass Avocado has become the world’s de-facto avocado.

While Hass is not perfect by any means, it excels in all the major categories growers should consider when selecting an avocado to grow: delicious flavor, great production, easy harvest, and excellent cold tolerance.

So if you love Hass and are considering growing a tree yourself, this grow guide will cover everything you need to know about the Hass Avocado:

Fun Fact: Hass is not pronounced ‘H-AH-SS,’ but rather rhymes with ‘class,’ ‘pass,’ and, well, the other word you’re thinking of ๐Ÿ˜›

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Table of Contents

Hass Avocado Tree Characteristics

The Hass Avocado Tree is a Flowering Type A Avocado. In other words, the female flowers open in the morning and male flowers in the afternoon. In order to maximize Hassโ€™s fruit production, the tree should be planted near a Flowering Type B Avocado with a similar fruiting season.

This includes avocado cultivars such as:

A pile of freshly harvested mature and unripe Hass Avocados
Image Credit: Avoha Avocados

In California, Hass’s fruit production consistently ranges from good to heavy, even at an early age (2-3 years old). And while Hass is not a true alternate bearer, it does exhibit alternate bearing tendencies, with crops alternating between stronger and weaker years.

On the other hand, when grown in Florida, Hass’s fruit production consistently ranges from poor to fair.

A Hass Avocado Tree loaded with fruit
Image Credit: Avocado Republik

Regardless of where the tree is grown, the tree’s canopy doesn’t do the best job of protecting the fruit from sunburn. This is one reason (among many others) why Hass doesn’t thrive as well in Florida compared to California.

Another notable difference between Hass grown in Florida vs California is the fruit’s final mature size. Specifically, California-grown Hass Avocados are small-sized fruits that typically weigh between 0.5 and 0.7 lb, while Florida-grown Hass Avocados are even smaller, weighing between 0.25 and 0.35 lb.

A Hass Avocado Tree loaded with fruit
Image Credit: Avocado Republik

The Hass Avocado is a Guatemalan X Mexican Hybrid.

Similar to other Guatemalan X Mexican Hybrids like Florida HassLamb HassSuper HassBacon and Winter Mexican, Hass is highly cold tolerant and able to withstand temperatures as low as 22ยบ F, making it one of the most cold hardy avocados available.

An upright growing Hass Avocado Tree grown in California in a planter box
Image Credit: Fair Oaks Tropiculture

When grown in California, the Hass Avocado tree exhibits a vigorous and upright growth habit.

Consequently, Hass may not be the best choice for those with small yards in California.

An upright growing Hass Avocado Tree grown in California in a planter box
Image Credit: Fair Oaks Tropiculture

In contrast, Hass Avocado Trees grown in Florida tend to grow at a much slower rate, bordering on semi-dwarfish to dwarfish levels of vigor.

This is likely due to the fact that Hass is simply not well adapted to Florida’s soil conditions, wetter climate, and much lower elevation.

A Hass Avocado Tree that was recently planted in the ground
Image Credit: Fair Oaks Tropiculture

Hass Avocado Flavor Profile

The Hass Avocado features dark purple (bordering on black), pebbled, and pliable skin that peels very well.

The small seed is tight in the cavity, allowing the seed husk to remain adhered to the seed and not flake off into the flesh.

A immature and unripe Hass Avocado hanging on the tree
Image Credit: Avocado Republik

Cutting open the fruit reveals pale greenish-yellow flesh that is firm and buttery smooth with no fiber whatsoever.

The fruit boasts an excellent oil content averaging anywhere between 15% – 20%.

A cluster of mature and ripe Hass Avocados on the tree
Image Credit: Avoha Avocados

From a flavor perspective, Hass Avocado sets the standard. Not only does the fruit have an incredibly rich and nutty flavor, but a perfectly ripe fruit will also contain hints of sweetness in every bite. This holds true whether the fruit is grown in California or Florida (though it’s more challenging in Florida).

Side Note: If you live in Florida and are seeking a ‘Hass-Like’ Fruit, I recommend checking out Florida Hass, Super Hass, Brogdon, or Oro Negro, which are all better adapted to Florida’s climate.

A mature and ripe Hass Avocado cut in half with a hand making bunny ears in the background
Image Credit: Avoha Avocados

Even among those who appreciate the wide-ranging flavor diversity among the hundreds of different avocado cultivars, Hass is almost universally beloved.

A mature and ripe Hass Avocado cut in half
Image Credit: Avoha Avocados

That is because there’s honestly nothing not to like about this fruit.

When you consider all of Hass’s other positives (besides flavor), including its long shelf life, great flesh-to-seed ratio, easy peeling, and lack of problems with the seed coat flaking off, it’s not hard to see why Hass has remained the world’s de-facto avocado.

A mature and ripe Hass Avocado cut in half with salt and pepper added
Image Credit: Avoha Avocados

And while it doesn’t have to be everybody’s favorite (personally, I would choose Fuerte, Lula, or Oro Negro over Hass), there’s no doubt that its buttery texture and rich flavor are absolutely delicious.

Hass Avocado Season (And When To Pick)

In California, Hass’s season ranges from February – August.

For the adventurous grower in Florida, Hass’s season ranges from December – January.

A cluster of immature and unripe Hass Avocados hanging on the tree
Image Credit: Avoha Avocados

For California growers in particular, I highly recommend waiting to harvest the fruit later in the season. This will allow the fruit to develop a higher oil content and deeper flavors.

Of course, it is still perfectly OK to enjoy the fruit earlier in the season. However, just know that the flavor will be much milder compared to the full-bodied and rich flavors that Hass is capable of.

A Hass Avocado Tree loaded with a lot of fruit
Image Credit: Avocado Republik

On the other hand, Florida growers don’t have the luxury of allowing the fruit to continue maturing (and by extension developing the fruit’s flavor and oil content) on the tree for an extended period of time. That is because doing so can result in the fruit having issues with ripening evenly when it comes time to harvest.

A Hass Avocado Tree loaded with a lot of fruit
Image Credit: Avocado Republik

Regardless of where one is located, the best time to pick Hass Avocados are when they are mature on the tree.

From a color perspective, Hass will transition to a deep, dull green with some parts of the fruit beginning to develop a purplish/black color. In addition to color, one can also check if the fruit:

  1. Is full size
  2. Feels soft
  3. Can gently be removed from the tree
Mature Hass Avocados that are beginning to ripen
Image Credit: Avoha Avocados

And once the entire fruit transitions to a dark purple, almost black color, it’s ready to eat!

Side Note: In the event of a mild winter, characterized by warmer temperatures and higher humidity levels, Florida growers should opt to pick their fruit on the lighter green side. While a darker green hue is the most ideal scenario, the reality is that Hass Avocados don’t fare well in our warmer and wetter climate (increased fruit drop and disease issues). Therefore, it’s always better to err on the side of caution!

Hass Avocado History

The Hass Avocado was initially propagated in La Habra Heights, California, by Rudolph Hass in 1926.

Hass was subsequently patented in 1935 and granted Patent Number 139.

A Hass Avocado Tree loaded with a lot of fruit
Image Credit: Avocado Republik

Interestingly enough, Rudolph Hass wasn’t even trying to breed the world’s most popular cultivar of avocado.

Allegedly, the story goes that Rudolph was planting out seeds for rootstock with the intention of grafting Fuerte Avocado onto them. However, one of the seedling trees rejected the Fuerte graft and eventually grew into the fruit that we all know today.

A Hass Avocado Tree loaded with a lot of fruit
Image Credit: Avocado Republik

However, Hass wasn’t an overnight success. This was because, at the time, Fuerte was the de-facto avocado of choice, and many consumers believed that avocados had to have green skin to be delicious.

Over a century later, it’s funny to see how the tables have turned. Now everyone expects high-quality avocados to have a dull and dark peel!

Unfortunately, the original tree was 76 years old when it was cut down in 2022 due to declining health.

A Hass Avocado Tree loaded with clusters of fruit
Image Credit: Avocado Republik

Hass is speculated to have been a seedling of Lyon. Its pollinating parent is unknown.

Finally, it’s interesting to note that despite Hass being the world’s de-facto avocado, “the Hass family earned less than $4,000 from Hass Avocado Trees.” If you are into fruit tree history, then I encourage you to click over to the linked article (after reading this grow guide, of course!)

Hass Avocado Tree For Sale

What can I say, Hass is probably one of the easiest trees to source.

That said, if you are unable to find a Hass Avocado at a local nursery, they are available for sale on FastGrowingTrees.com, which is an online nursery that provides a wide selection of tropical trees, shrubs and plants. 

Not only does FastGrowingTrees ship quickly, but they also offer an optional 1 Year Warranty (which is always nice).

Conclusion

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If you have any questions regarding anything mentioned in this grow guide, please comment them below! This way, others can also benefit from the answer to the same question. For any other questions or growing tips that you think may be helpful, feel free to use the contact form and drop me a line.

Thank you for reading! ๐Ÿ™‚

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Matthew Rowlings

I have an Associates Degree in Biology from the University of Florida and am also an active Florida Master Gardener. I am located in Central Florida (Zone 10A) and have 6+ years of experience with growing 20+ types of tropical trees. You can learn more about me and why I started Tropical Tree Guide on my about page.

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