Lamb Hass Avocado Grow Guide

Two Mature and Ripe Lamb Hass Avocados Cut In Half
Image Credit: Crowd Farming

To answer the main question you probably had about Lamb Hass:

Yes, Lamb Hass tastes just as amazing as Hass.

However, whether you’re an avocado enthusiast like myself or contemplating planting a Lamb Hass, I’ve got you covered. This grow guide will cover everything that you need to know about Lamb Hass Avocado:

Table of Contents

Lamb Hass Avocado Tree Characteristics

The Lamb 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 Lamb Hass’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:

Even from an early age, Lamb Hass’s fruit production consistently ranges from good to heavy. According to the original patent application for Lamb Hass, Lamb is capable of consistently producing upwards of 50% more yield relative to the original Hass.

A box full of Lamb Hass Avocados
Image Credit: Crowd Farming

However, it should be noted that younger Lamb Hass Avocado Trees have a tendency to drop a lot of fruit; the tree simply cannot support a ton of fruit set early in its life. Additionally, Lamb Hass can also exhibit alternate bearing tendencies in years after producing a heavy crop.

Fortunately, as the tree matures, these quirks will become less of an issue.

Additionally, the tree tends to produce fruit in heavy clusters. Therefore, it’s important to thin the fruit from younger branches to prevent them from breaking under the weight of the fruit.

The avocados themselves are small-sized fruits that typically weight between 0.6 and 1.0 lb (bigger than a regular Hass). Despite containing a medium-sized seed, Lamb Hass has a good flesh-to-seed ratio.

Several Mature (But Not Ripe) Lamb Hass Avocados Hanging On The Tree
Image Credit: Grossman’s Avocados

The Lamb Hass Avocado is a Guatemalan X Mexican Hybrid. Similar to other Guatemalan X Mexican Hybrids like Bacon, Zutano, Super Hass, Florida Hass, Hass, Winter Mexican, and Fuerte, Lamb Hass is highly cold tolerant and able to withstand temperatures as low as 22º F, making it one of the most cold hardy avocados available.

As a result, Lamb Hass is a great option for those who are in USDA Hardiness Zones 9A and above.

Finally, the Lamb Hass Avocado Tree has a vigorous and upright growth habit. Interestingly enough, the leaves of Lamb Hass are a shade darker relative to the regular Hass.

Lamb Hass Avocado Flavor Profile

The Lamb Hass Avocado has dark green, thick, and pebbly skin reminiscent of Hass. As a result, the skin is not very pliable and doesn’t peel easily; Lamb Hass is definitely more of a “scooper avocado.”

Cutting into the fruit will reveal a golden greenish-yellow flesh that is smooth and creamy, though maybe not as creamy as Hass (but close enough). The flesh also has a slight firmness and a high oil content, upwards of 18 – 20%, making the fruit an excellent candidate for guacamole.

Two Mature and Ripe Lamb Hass Avocados Cut In Half
Image Credit: Crowd Farming

From a flavor perspective, there is no question that Lamb Hass is a high-quality fruit with an exceptionally rich and nutty flavor. To be honest, Lamb Hass tastes almost exactly like a store-bought Hass. For someone who has only ever consumed Hass, I would say it would be very difficult for them to distinguish between the two fruits.

And while I would personally rate Lamb Hass slightly below Hass, they are still very close… not like 9/10 (Lamb) vs. 10/10 (Hass), but more like 9.5/10 (Lamb) vs. 10/10 (Hass).

Lamb Hass Avocado Season (And When To Pick)

In Florida, Lamb Hass Avocados are considered a late season avocado (December – January).

However, when grown in California, Lamb Hass’s season ranges from May – October.

A Hass and Lamb Hass Avocado Side By Side
Image Credit: All Aussie Farmers

When grown in California, it’s best to allow Lamb Hass to hang on the tree closer to the end of June in order for the fruit to continue developing a satisfactorily high oil content. However, don’t let them hang too long! While mid-to-later season Lamb Hass do taste better, the seeds can germinate within the fruit (ruining the fruit).

That said, the best time to pick Lamb Hass Avocados are when they are mature on the tree.

From a color perspective, when grown in California, this is when the fruit has transitioned to a deep-purple, almost black, color. On the other hand, when grown in Florida, Lamb Hass should be picked when the fruit is mature but still green.

Additionally, when growing Lamb Hass in Florida, while it’s obviously best to wait for the fruit’s color to start transitioning while on the tree, the reality is that between uneven ripening issues (which tend to be exacerbated when left on the tree) and the unpredictable thunderstorms (that can cause the fruit to split), it’s best to be cautious when harvesting Lamb Hass in Florida.

A Mature (But Not Ripe) Lamb Hass Avocado
Image Credit: Grossman’s Avocados

While determining an avocado’s maturity can be difficult and require some trial and error, I have developed a repeatable process that has worked great for me:

  1. For CA Growers, starting on May 8, after the fruit has transitioned to a deep-purple color, pull a single fruit off the tree and allow it ripen for 3 – 8 days (at room temperature). For FL Growers, starting on Dec 1, pull a single fruit off the tree and allow it ripen for 3 – 8 days (at room temperature)
  2. Delicately create small indents all around the fruit using your fingers.
    • If you detect a mixture of hard and soft spots, the fruit is not yet ripe. 
    • Conversely, uniform softness (not super soft) throughout the fruit indicates that it is ready for consumption.
  3. Taste the fruit – is the taste or consistency off ?
    • If the fruit tastes great, the rest of the avocados on our tree are ready to be harvested
    • If the fruit tastes sour/foul/rancid, wait another month and repeat the process with another single fruit
Several Lamb Hass Avocados Hidden In The Canopy of a Lamb Hass Avocado Tree
Image Credit: Grossman’s Avocados

After confirming that the avocados on our tree are mature, we can begin developing our ‘avocado pipeline.’ This involves picking some fruit to ripen on the counter for more immediate use while also placing others in the refrigerator to be used later. By adopting this approach, we can ensure a continuous supply of ripe avocados.

Lamb Hass Avocado History

The Lamb Hass Avocado was initially propagated in the 1980s by the University of California in Camarillo, California.

Its original planting name was BL122 and was patented in 1996 (now expired). BL122 was eventually renamed to Lamb Hass in honor of Bob Lamb, who owned the property in Camarillo where the original tree was propagated.

A box full of Lamb Hass Avocados
Image Credit: Crowd Farming

Lamb Hass is a seedling of Gwen (and therefore a great-grandchild of Hass). Its pollinating parent is unknown.

Since its introduction, Lamb Hass has become an important commercial avocado cultivar due to:

  • Lamb Hass having a slightly later season than regular Hass
  • Lamb Hass looking a lot like Hass (matching consumer demand)
  • Lamb Hass producing a higher yield than regular Hass

Lamb Hass Avocado Tree For Sale

Due to Lamb Hass’s issues with uneven ripening and fruit split/rot, I wouldn’t recommend growing a Lamb Hass Avocado in Florida. That is because there are other tasty avocado cultivars that thrive much better in Florida’s wet and humid climate, such as Monroe, Catalina, Kampong, and Oro Negro.

That said, Lamb Hass performs a lot better in California and offers several advantages to the California grower. Relative to Hass, Lamb Hass consistently produces larger fruit on average and are usually well-protected within the tree’s canopy. Additionally, Lamb Hass’s season extends 3 – 4 weeks past when the regular Hass season is finished.

That said, if I lived in California and already had a Hass planted, I would personally rather plant a Reed or Fuerte for more flavor and season diversity.

Conclusion

If you found this grow guide helpful, please consider sharing. It helps support the website 🙂

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! 🙂

_

Join Our Community

Avatar

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.

View all posts by Matthew Rowlings →