In plant evolution terms, avocados shouldn't even exist

Sprouting from seeds is fun and nice for small decorative plants, but I understand it’s a lousy way to get fruit. Apparently they don’t grow true from seed, and it can take a decade or more to find out if they’ll produce fruit at all… Buying established, grafted trees is the way to go.


I understand that Ginko fruit evolved to be eaten by some sort of dinosaur, which is why they have such an odd smell. They only survived, before human beings were around, because they can also reproduce asexually and individuals can survive for several thousand years. Even so, they mostly went extinct, wth survivors going from a global distribution to limited to a few places in Asia before humans spread them again.


My wife’s childhood home in Zambia had a big avocado tree with fruit almost as large as American footballs. One of them would feed their family of four, and they were heavy enough to break roofing tiles when they fell from the tree. They had a number of recipes, but their favourite was ice cream - I guess it tasted similar to the dessert @chgoliz described. Some of the fruit was too high to pick, so the dogs in the area got fat eating the fruit that got overripe and fell by itself.

Apparently Tesco started selling large avocados from South Africa a few years ago, maybe theirs was the same variety (my MIL says they looked similar).


Ever try dropping the salt and lime and throwing in soy sauce instead? I may sound like a heretic, but give it a try.


I need to start making my own. All the guac I find up here is poisoned with cilantro.

Sucks having bum tasting genes that say cilantro tastes like a garbage fire. Especially since I love Mexican food that doesn’t have it, but all the fucking hipster places think it’s some kind of miracle spice.

I guess turning a tasty burrito into a turd wrapped in foil is a miracle in a way.


I was going to say “because they’re revolting abominations”, but the sciencey answer is a lot more interesting. Hmm. “Testicle” in Aztec, you say.

And yeah, I’m well aware that I’m probably in a tiny minority on this. I don’t care. I just want The Green Menace to stop ruining my sushi rolls, damn it.


This comment is unrelated to avocados, but is related to the evolution of plants due to a now-extinct animal.

The New Zealand Lancewood tree has a dramatically different juvenile form compared to it’s adult form. The juvenile has hard and spiky leaves growing all up the trunk:

The adult form has a naked trunk and nice green leaves in cluster up the top of a long trunk:

The supposed reason for this change in its form is that it used to be eaten by the now extinct moa and therefore had to be unappetizing until the canopy could reach above the height of these giant birds:

Now of course the lancewood is free to grow any way it wants, but why would it without selection pressure.


So not a pizza topping? I am disappoint.


Now it is a race against time. Can scientists reconstruct the moa genome and revive the species in time to save New Zealand from disappearing beneath a canopy of lancewoods?


I fear I’ll soon qualify as functionally illiterate, as I can’t bring myself to watch a YouTube video for ten words worth of how-to :frowning:


Great story! The wonders around.


You’re my kind of heretic.


I’m going to be a thankless pedant - this clip should really be titled: Avocados wouldn’t still exist without humans (maybe). I say maybe, because if humans hadn’t arrived on the scene it’s possible those large herbivores would still be around spreading avocado seeds. Human and plant evolution are linked just as giant armadillo and avocado evolution were linked. I guess my gripe is that using the word “shouldn’t” suggests that humans aren’t a part of the natural world.

I suppose avocados were lucky to be attractive to humans as a food, but maybe it’s not all that surprising since they were already attractive to a range of mammalian foragers.


All the hipster places around here make it “artisinally” at the table-side, giving one the opportunity to pass on familial horrors like cilanto and jalapeños.


I’m eating one right now.


Gads, I love commenters like you. Thank you! Also: 275 clicks and only 46 likes? Where’s your gratitude, readers?


Do you feel touched by the Intelligent Designer?


Avocado bender. I like the cut of your jib.

1 Like

Hay!! The moment I was able to read Avocados and Giant Sloths I mashed the like button like noones business! :smiley:

Also, @smut_clyde, ten more meta likes from your pal japhroaig.


I personally cannot wait until Ctrl/Cmd+F works for video feeds so I can finally just skip to the goddamn point.