Do figs grow well in Virginia near the Eastern Shore?

terry_upstate_ny(5)March 27, 2012

I am dreaming of moving to a warmer climate where we can plant

our figs in the ground instead of having to keep them in pots. I would also like to be near the beach.

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Just a quick climate check tells me that even coastal Virginia can go down into the twenties. Better pick a hardy variety, and hope for the best if planted in-ground. Are containerized fig trees an option? Store them in an unheated garage, in the colder months, then roll them out to grow in the warmer weather. Easy, if the containers are on dollies.

I'm sure fig growers who live in the "Old Dominion" will be posting some information about your fig-growing endeavors.

Hope this may help.

Frank, from The Bronx, NYC

PS...Call up some local nurseries in the area in which you think you might relocate, and ask what varieties grow well in that specific area. I'm sure you will have plenty of choices.

I grow "ATREANO", and I am almost certain that this fig will do well in Virginia too.

    Bookmark   March 27, 2012 at 8:40AM
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Thanks Frank, I currently have some potted figs. I wonder just how far south would be safe for planting inground but I guess that depends on the variety, as you suggest.

    Bookmark   March 27, 2012 at 10:26AM
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Can't really say for sure but I would think at least Southern Florida, and some areas in LA, and the other Gulf States, for almost, trouble-free, in-ground growing. Probably zone-9/10 minimum. Just a guess on my part.


    Bookmark   March 27, 2012 at 2:48PM
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Depends on the variety. Coastal Virginia is probably zone 7B or so. Some varieties will do pretty well in that climate most years. Others will die back to the ground most years. As you go further south and closer to the coast, there are more varieties that will survive the winter unprotected.

Probably around Tampa and south, the climate is such that exposure to cold temperatures is no longer a limiting factor. However, I hear that some folks have bad nematode problems there due to poor soils and mild winters.

If you were deciding where to move solely based on Fig potential, I'd say southern california or the mediterranean would be your best bet.

    Bookmark   March 27, 2012 at 4:51PM
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I have been reading some older posts for the last hour. Herman2 says that he has grown Hardy Chicago in New Jersey unprotected, as well as some other varieties. I would like to stay on the East Coast to be near my family. I could let the trees mature a few years before planting them inground, and protect them in the winter while they are young, and plant cold hardy varieties. I don't want to move to far south because I don't think I can take the heat... lol! Terry

    Bookmark   March 27, 2012 at 5:53PM
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frozenjoe(9 Arizona)

Long Island, NYC, and parts of New Jersey are about as far north as you can go with in ground figs without having to do some serious winterization. There are probably some microclimates north of there that people have been successful with, but I think it is rare. Even in the areas I mentioned only the most cold hardy figs can survive unprotected, and you might still get die back in bad winters. When you go further south the number of varieties you can grow increases and you get a longer growing season which translates to a bigger harvest. You can definitely grow figs in ground along the eastern shore of Virginia if you choose the right varieties and you plant them in a suitable location.


    Bookmark   March 27, 2012 at 6:38PM
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noss(Zone 9a Lafayette, LA)


You are very wise to consider the heat down here. It is very HOT and for most of the year.

I've noticed over the years, that it's staying hot later and later in the season. I don't care for that, much.


    Bookmark   March 28, 2012 at 1:09AM
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cazimere(MD 7)

I'm on the eastern shore of MD. All my figs are in-ground.
I give them a little protection the first year the they are on their own. The do just fine. I have Katheren Black. Sals. Ambrosia. Celeste. Violette Du Bordeaux. LSU Gold. and a few un-named figs.

    Bookmark   March 28, 2012 at 8:18AM
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Thank you all for your answers! Terry

    Bookmark   March 28, 2012 at 12:18PM
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