Tag Archive | growing figs

New Baby Fig

My beautiful four-foot high fig tree died because it got too chilled during winter storage so I bought a baby that arrived a few months ago.  The the tree was about a foot high.  I potted it and put it in the south window of my kitchen.  After a month or so the baby had established roots and started to sprout leaves.  Then it did what figs do, it set tiny fruit.

I figured the fruit would wither and die on such a small plant.  But, no.  They are getting larger and more fruit are setting!  It is so exciting to think of growing fresh figs right in my kitchen.  I’m considering making this into a bonsai tree so it stays small and can grow in the house.  It is one of the smaller-sized cultivars so perhaps keeping it in the house will work.  The lengths I’m willing to go to just to have fresh figs in Maine!

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Fresh Figs!

f1f2My first fresh figs!  I’m so proud.  Two have ripened and quickly been devoured.

The figs have seeds in them, quite a surprise since I assumed they would be asexual.

The flavor is perfect:  sweet, subtle, reminiscent of honey and vaguely white grape-like, a taste all its own.  Fresh figs right off the tree are the best!  I eat the whole fruit, including most of the stem.

f3f4The fig’s leaves are rapidly turning yellow and will soon fall.  I’m not sure how this will affect the four remaining fruit still to ripen.  Since this is my first experience with a fig tree, there is plenty to learn!

The nightly blanketing with a thick cotton bedsheet has protected the tree from light frost.  That won’t work much longer.  The temperatures will soon dip into the 20s F at night and the little tree will have to move inside.  Next spring it will get an earlier start than this year so the fruit will have more time to ripen.  I’m already looking forward to next year’s harvest!

Figs Ripening!

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It’s very exciting for me!  My first figs are ripening!  They are getting a pretty pink blush.  When the color is mahogany they will be ready to pick!!  The little tree is ripening six fruit.  Can hardly wait to eat them.  I bought some fresh figs are the grocery store last week.  They were sad, wrinkled and over-ripened things, but still better than dried figs.

The fig tree is in a race with the weather.  Temperatures have remained warmer than normal here. We’ve gotten several light frosts, mostly right around the full moons.  Covering the tree at night with an old bed sheet has spared it from being nipped by frost.  If the temperatures dip any lower than about 28F, I will have to move the tree inside.

The full sun it receives outside is spurring the fruit ripening, I sure.  Moving the tree inside will shock it some and cause it to drop the leaves quickly.  Not sure what that will do to my fruit.  I’m rooting for warm weather to continue for at least a couple more weeks.  If past weather patterns hold, it will stay warm right up to late October.  We have been getting warm, wet autumns and cool, dry springs for the past several years.  Keeping my fingers crossed for figs!

Figs!

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My new fig tree has fruit!  Today I was removing a dead leaf and spotted all these tiny figs forming.  That was a surprise!  I didn’t expect the tree to produce this year.  I bought it this spring and it is about four feet tall. During the past couple months it has developed a mop of leaves at the top.  Side shoots for lower branches are also starting to form.

The tree appears to be very happy against the south side of the house.  I planted some moss roses around the base and water regularly.  It’s so exciting to think there may be figs to eat this year!

These fruit are forming without fertilization, called parthenocarpic.  They occur as extensions of the stem and will not contain seeds, only flowering bodies.  They will still be very yummy, and less crunchy.  The “seeds” in figs (the true fruit of the plant) are not my favorite part for eating.

This winter I plan to house the fig tree in a cool room upstairs in my house rather than in the unheated woodshed.  The baby fig I had last year got too cold out in the shed and died.  Figs are supposed to be able to withstand temps down to 17F, but very young trees are more susceptible to cold.  I am much happier with this older, taller tree than with the tiny baby from last year.  This tree is old enough to make fruit!!fig1

Little Fig Tree

figfig1To update the development of my baby fig:  it’s doing great!  The photo on right is from when the fig first arrived.  The photo at left was taken two days ago. The little tree is very happy in its sunny window.

The poor thing tried to die soon after I received it.  I believe the clay pot was the problem, too dry.  It has thrived in the plastic pot.  Every other day it requires a little water so the soil stays slightly damp all the time.  The fig has done so well it needs repotting. The roots are starting to fill the current pot.

I will set it outside today to encourage hardening off for the long winter sleep in the dark, chilly mud room.  The shorter days and cooler temperatures will signal it to start dormancy.  Next spring the fig can go outside for the warm weather and I hope to get some fruit.

This everbearing fig should grow to about six feet tall and can produce two crops of fruit in a year. Fresh figs are so yummy, I sure look forward to having some!