The Fuerte avocado is often recognized as the archetypal avocado, green in color, pear-like in shape, and ranging from six to twelve ounces in size. It has smooth, medium-thin skin that peels easily, with dense, pale green flesh. It is marginally oily with a rich, creamy flavor and notes of hazelnut, and it is still considered by many to be the best tasting avocado.
The Fuerte avocado tree is large and spreading, one of the more cold-hardy varieties, and the leaves have a strong anise smell when crushed. The fruit set of the tree is irregular, as some trees never seem to have much fruit while others are productive, and it has a tendency to alternate in bearing, producing an adequate crop every other year, depending on weather at setting time, along with other factors.
Avocado trees differ in the types of flowers that they have. Type A have female flowers in the morning and male pollen-producing flowers in the afternoon, and Type B, like the Fuerte avocado, are the opposite. Fruit set in Fuerte avocado trees often improves dramatically when the trees are inter-planted with varieties that have Type A flowers because more pollen is available.
When temperatures are less than ideal for fruit set, Fuerte avocado trees may form fruits that are stimulated to grow by the pollen tube but never undergo fertilization, resulting in small, narrow seedless fruit called “cukes”, which may be harvested and sold as cocktail avocados.
Unlike most fruits, the avocado does not ripen on the tree and instead begins to ripen once harvested, and their sugar level actually decreases as they mature. Their skin remains green, and the fruit will yield to gentle pressure when ripe.