Sorry. Last Tuesday’s Tip became this Tuesday’s Tip, and then Thursday’s Tip due to technical difficulties. (After years of flawless uploads through a USB, my Canon Rebel suddenly decided that it no longer likes communicating to my Dell laptop. Or maybe it’s Windows 7 that has shut it down. I tried a lot of technical intervention over the last ten days, but the PC and camera are in a stony stare down, citing irreconcilable differences.) Anyway, back to figs.
I finally have some figs forming on my fig tree. See them?
No? Now do you see them?
Well, at least one, right? There’s more than one, but they are playing hard-to-get. I can’t really blame them…the first couple of years of our relationship involved benign neglect. Like the summer it stayed hidden under an overturned 5-gallon bucket. And then there was a sudden move in 2011, and then an incredibly hot and dry summer in 2012. So it’s exciting to see those little fruits forming. Here’s hoping for good warm temps the rest of the summer,and a late first frost.
A few things you should know about figs (and a few I wish I had known):
- Figs need a long warm season to bear fruit. (That one I knew already, but in case you didn’t, if you garden north of me – I’m in zone 6b/7a with a solid six-months of frost-free weather – you may need to grow your fig in a large-but-moveable container. And be prepared to move into a protected spot if frost threatens before the fruit ripens.
- Fig roots go deep and wide. Don’t plant near a house, or they can cause foundation problems. (That’s one I didn’t know.)
- Figs are self-fertile, so only one is needed (good to know, huh?).
- The ripe fruit will attract birds and stinging insects. Probably not a great idea to plant mine adjacent to our deck, but keeping the ripe fruit picked off should keep the peace between me and the natives.
- A lot of experts say that what are commonly sold as ‘Brown Turkey’ figs are not BTs. And apparently that’s a good thing, because they also say ‘Brown Turkey’ is not the tastiest fig. Of course, there aren’t many fig varieties that can be grown in my climate, so whether I have a ‘Brown Turkey’ or ‘Celeste’, I will be a happy fig eater in another month or two (they typically ripen in late August to late September, depending on how our year went.) Fingers crossed.Happy gardening!