Avocados have many beneficial nutrients, including folic acid, both E and B vitamins, fiber and monounsaturated fat. Originating in Mexico, avocados are commercially grown in the United States primarily in California and Florida. There are three major varieties of avocados: Guatemalan, Mexican and West Indian. Each variety offers fruits of different shape, color and size, but the largest fruits are of the West Indian variety.
The "Pollock" avocado is a West Indian variety grown in Florida. These avocados can weigh18 to 40 oz. It is pear shaped with smooth skin and available in July until late September. Pollock avocados usually are not grown for commercial use because of their size. Pollock avocado trees also tend to produce a small harvest.
The "Russell" avocado is a large fruit with a distinctive shape. Looking more like a gourd than an avocado, this West Indian variety can weigh 16 to 24 ounces. Primarily grown in Florida, the Russell avocado is a suitable tree for home gardens because of its typically low fruit production.
The "Lamb Hass" avocado is a hybrid Guatemalan avocado from California. These high-quality avocados are similar in taste and appearance to the original "Hass" avocado. One major difference is the size of the Lamb Hass, which can weigh 11 to 19 oz. Lamb Hass avocados are oval and extremely symmetrical in shape. The texture of the skin is green and pebbly, turning almost black when ripe.
"Pinkerton" avocados were developed in California is the 1970s. This long, pear-shaped fruit has a thick green skin that is smoother than the Hass avocado's and a green color that darkens as it becomes ripe. A hybrid Guatemalan variety, the Pinkerton avocado can weigh 8 to 18 oz.
The "Gwen" avocado is a Guatemalan variety similar to the Hass avocado, but larger. This oval-shaped fruit can weigh between 6 and 15 oz. Gwen avocados have a thick, pebbly skin and small seeds. The skin's green color will becomes dull once it is ripe. Due to its similarities to the Hass, Gwen avocados have been referred to as the "grandchild" of the Hass avocado. These fruits are available beginning in April until late October.
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