What is the difference between Hass, Fuerte, and Kienyeji avocados?
Kenya provides an ideal environment for avocados especially due to the subtropical climates. African avocados have gained recognition globally, with the majority of exported avocado varieties being from South Africa and Kenya. Hass and Fuerte are the most exported varieties from Kenya. There are slight differences between Hass, Fuerte, and Kienyeji avocados. For instance,
The skin of hass avocado becomes dark when ripe. The ripeness can be determined by a gentle squeeze. They are served when the inside is white-green. This variety has an intense flavor and creamy flesh making it suitable for making guacamole. Hass avocado takes lesser time to mature and produce more yields.
This variety has a characteristic elongated form with glossy and thin skin. They have a bright green, loose, textured skin that is easy to peel. They do not soften and hence hard to determine when they are ripe. They have a low-fat content and calorie count compared to hass avocados. They are mainly used to make salads since they can be easily sliced and diced.
Compared to hass avocado, local avocados are larger in size and have a low-fat content. For instance, 3 slices of kienyeji avocado contain about 3 grams of fat while has avocado contains 4.6 grams. They take a couple of years to mature and some can even take a decade.
Why hass avocado is preferred
The demand of hass avocados in the local and international markets has been increasing over the years. There are various reasons why hass avocado is preferred. These include:
The hass plant is far much preferred for its long harvest season and greater yield.
The hass plant produces greater yield and a long harvest season and hence more revenue to the farmers.
Long shelf life
The fruits have a tough skin which helps in minimizing damaging of fruits during transportation. Compared to other varieties, they have a longer shelf life and can last up to 3 weeks from the time of harvest. Thus makes shipment and handling convenient.
Unlike other varieties, they have more health benefits. For instance, they contain oleic acid which helps in fighting inflammation in the body and protects against diabetes and heart diseases.
Also, they contain antioxidants and important minerals such as carotenoids, copper, and vitamin K.
Fertilizing avocado plants
Fertilizer treatments in avocado farms are determined by soil and leaf analysis results. In less fertile soils, farmers may need to supplement their plants with nutrients that are not in the soil. Adding fertilizers immediately after planting is not recommended since it can burn the roots of the young tree. Some of the nutrients that are required by avocado plants include Nitrogen, Calcium, Boron, and Zinc. The soil pH also plays an important role and should also be taken into consideration.
Nitrogen speeds up vegetative growth and encourages canopy health. Fertilizers containing boron and calcium should be added to enhance flowering, fruit set, and to improve the fruit quality. The soil pH can be regulated by using lime.
Avocado plants require adequate water supply throughout the year. Too much water and little water can have adverse effects on the plants.
When the plants don’t get enough water;
- Plants experience stress which results in early flowering and poor fruit set.
- Increased flower and fruit abortion
- Poor quality fruits and reduced fruit size
Too much water results to;
- Nutrient imbalances
- Promotes root rot
- Reduced tree vigor.