I know a lot of people who SELL avocado tree's who tell me that the do well in Arizona and thrive and ask to take my 80 bucks, but the reality is I've never seen one do well and everyone I know who has bought one shortly thereafter tore it out or had to baby it to such a degree that it was a waste of time. I know Rare Fruit Growers who have gotten trees in spectacular microclimates to fruit golf ball fruits that are crummy. Well I've finally seen a tree that not only fruits but is huge and delivers huge fruits. It's a little frost burned but I've seen the fruits, the flowers, and talked to the gardner who takes care of the beauty. He quickly told me that UA extension came to learn about his tree because they've never seen anything like it. Well it's near a pool so it gets extra humidity during the summer. But more imporantly, he told me that the location where the tree sits actually is back fill dirt and not native soil. It goes down 20 feet. It is a Fuerte and it's the only one I know of that does well here in Az. If you know of a few, please take pictures and share.
I have seen a dozen or so 6'-20' trees in the older parts of Phoenix and Mesa. A few people say they get fruit from them but I personally have never seen an Avocado that was grown in the metro area.
If someone can find a fruiting tree please post pics and location!
Avocados just aren't worth it. They can't take the water, they can't take the heat, they can't take the soil, and the quality of fruit generated in the heat is often lousy. Even the tree cited in your article is being babied in Tucson, not Phoenix.
Unless you're a really good gardener and the tree is located in an ideal location, it's absolutely pointless. There are so many other trees that one can try out here that produce quality fruit and require 1/10th the effort one needs to grow avocados -- I just don't know why people continue to waste tons of money at nurseries and Big Box stores on these trees.