Black mission fig

azamigo(Zone12AZ)July 15, 2005

I am considering planting a fig tree to replace another tree that died at one of my rental properties. Unlike my personal residence that has flood irrigation, my rental property unfortunatly has drip. I'm going to plant the tree as a 5 gallon plant-Greenfields has some really healthy field grown trees for only $20. Anything you can tell me about growth rate and watering practices would be great. The reason I picked a fig is that the tenants-which are by the way the best tenants I've ever had-requested a tree to shade a the north-facing kitchen window that would drop it's leaves and let in winter sun. The fig that I've got at my own house gets the same irrigation that every other tree gets and does beautifully. I'm assuming that since figs are native to the same places as pommegranites and olives that they would be really tough and drought resistant once established.

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tomatofreak(Z9 Phx USA)

AZamigo, I would not plant a fig tree in that location unless I asked the tenants a) if they like figs, b) if they don't mind the mess they make when the figs fall and ferment, and c) if they wouldn't mind having a flock of birds descend when the figs ripen. Of course, if you're planting a small tree, your present tenants could be gone by the time the tree produces!

Now, about your choice: I would not plant a mission fig at all. For beauty of structure, it's hard to beat a fig tree, but if you like the figs, the *only* fig to plant is a Brown Turkey fig. I think Mission figs like to live in CA where there's a lot more humidity. My neighbor has one in her backyard and the figs are inedible. OTOH, my turkey fig is prolific and the figs are incredibly edible! We eat them right off the tree, dry them, make jam and preserves and give them to envious neighbors.

My yard is also irrigated, but I can tell you that if the tree does not get enough water, it doesn't do well and the figs are small and tend to be dry. I love figs and wouldn't hesitate to encourage you to plant one in your own yard, but I have reservations about planting one where it might be considered a nuisance.

    Bookmark   July 15, 2005 at 11:38AM
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Acutally I mentioned to the tenants a few days ago that I was going to plant a fig tree there and they were thrilled-the couple used to live in Santa Barbara and misses having fresh figs. About mission figs not liking our climate, everyone I've spoken to says that the mission variety does best in a climate with hot, dry summers and from the condition of the tree in my yard I'd have to agree. I've heard that brown turkey variety does best in higher elevations....any fruit tree that is deprived of water will produce dry, nasty fruit-except maybe dates and that with them you kinda expect that texture lol.

    Bookmark   July 16, 2005 at 3:12AM
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tomatofreak(Z9 Phx USA)

"I've heard that brown turkey variety does best in higher elevations...."

Don't think this tree could do any better; it grew very fast and produced the very next year after planting while it was still pretty small. It's prolific and the figs beat every other variety I've tasted. I've dried, frozen and made jam; they all taste great. Good luck with whatever variety you choose.

    Bookmark   July 16, 2005 at 4:07PM
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violett de bordeaux, where can i get one?

    Bookmark   March 4, 2009 at 10:15PM
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I like the black jack best, most of the people that come by here seem to want these more than any other

Here is a link that might be useful: Black Jack Fig

    Bookmark   March 4, 2009 at 10:36PM
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Hi AZamigo, I live in Mesa and I like figs too. I have 23 fig trees in my back yard along with a lot of other fruit trees. Fig trees are usually grown from cuttings and they produce figs even when they are very small trees as I am sure this tree will do for them also. I think nearly any fig will grow in Arizona and I have one black mission fig tree that is in full sun and doing fine.

Water it at night as often as it needs. During the summer it may need to be watered a little every day until its well established. Fig trees grow fast but their root systems are not overly invasive and are often planted with a few feet of a house with no worry of damage to the foundation.

My favorite tasting figs grown here so far are Italian Ever bearing, Petite Negri, Violette de Bordeaux.

    Bookmark   March 5, 2009 at 1:09PM
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aikanae(z9b AZ)

I've had black mission also and it produced excellently. I planted a bare root tree and it produced the first year. Every year after that, I got 2 crops a year. More figs than I could use. You might want to plant a variety you don't have for that reason.

Drainage is important and the reason I think I lost mine. It was planted too low. Since then I've learned to plant on mounds to increase drainage.

Give your tenant a bird net or they won't have any figs.

    Bookmark   March 10, 2009 at 1:50PM
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