What do you do with all those figs?

keepitlow(6)April 9, 2010

From reading here, at least a couple of members had fig trees numbering in the hundreds.

You can't possibly eat all those figs...unless your intestines are made of kryptonite!

Why do you have so many trees and what do you do with all those figs? (And if you want more trees- how many more do you want?)

I just bought my 7th fig tree. I hope to have 9 someday. If I had the garage and yard space for the pots, I'd like to have 15 figs. But that is about it. (I think?)

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girlbug2(z9/10, Sunset zone 24)

LOL I think we figgies are junkies.

I have a nearly mature Black Jack and I've just planted 2 other figs in ground. The idea is, that when they are all producing small harvests in a couple of years I can be sure of not only having enough for a daily handful to eat fresh, but I can also share with people who don't "get it" and make some converts. I think figs are vastly underappreciated!

Whatever is excess, I trim off the stem end and pop into the freezer. Slowly by the end of the main season the 1 gallon ziploc bag is full. Then I can thaw them and make fig jam for gifts. Fig jam is hard to find in stores and way overpriced IMO. Making my own not only tastes better, but I can do low sugar and no sugar recipes. Try finding *that* in Bristol Farms!!

If I had the landscape space for it, I'd plant 5 more varieties just to experiment with finding the "ultimate fig". As it is, I may have to start a few pots.

    Bookmark   April 9, 2010 at 1:20PM
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For me, I eat them fresh. Of course, I had a lot of help from family, friends, neighbors, birds and squirrels. There are a lot of other options...

my aunt uses branches (bark removed) to skewer shish kabob.


    Bookmark   April 9, 2010 at 2:05PM
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Why so many fig trees......

That's easy. I have hundreds of fig trees simply because I am a bonafide, dedicated FIG RESEARCHER. I am retired and have the time and desire to a good job in that activity.

I live in an area of South Louisiana where figs have been a tradition even before there was even a United States. Here Celeste is King/Queen and an excellent fig by any measure. However, it normally only fruits between early July thru mid August. It is one of my primary goals to seek out (I am a fig hunter too) and identify NEW varieties of figs that will do well in my hot, humid, rainy climate. It is my intent to identify a few other great varieties that will SIGNIFICANTLY extend the fig season. In my area (climate) it is possible to have fresh figs from mid June up until about the middle of December. Many local people do not know that fact and would really appreciate having varieties available to extend their fig season.

The best way to find "the best" fig varieties for my climate is to grow them side by side in trial plantings. That way they are all grown under the exact same growing conditions. I grow multiple strains of some cultivars to find out any differences. Also, I am big into the development of NEW fig propagation methods.....and get a lot of new fig trees from those experiments too.


    Bookmark   April 9, 2010 at 2:43PM
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Simply put, them figs are just addictive!
One tends to aquire one+++ more+++ figs thanks to
(duplicate +++/--- fig naming confusions),
(and some serious fig-breeders)
ending up with hundreds of fig specimens (maybe) beyond
ones means (speaking for myself)...

As for an example of how many (overwhelming) figs
DO exist, just have a look of this magnificent
worldwide famous fig database:

Here is a link that might be useful: http://figs4fun.com/Varieties.html

    Bookmark   April 9, 2010 at 3:26PM
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yeah folks, but y'all are not answering the original question (except for the first two responses) the question is what do you actually DO with the figs, not with the trees. We know you do research or just love figs like me, but especially for the folks that have hundreds of trees... what do you do with all the fig fruits? we're talking about possibly hundreds, maybe thousands of pounds of figs. Do you sell them at the farmer's market? give them away? eat a few and let the birds eat the rest (if so SHAME ON YOU! if you don't think of the thousands of fig-starved people in third world counties like Maricopa... ok I'm joking.

As for me, I only have 2 trees so far, both in the ground, a black mission and a brown turkey (not bad since I bought this property less than 2 years ago. I love love fresh figs. I can't wait for these trees to start pumping out major fig harvests. The first year in the ground my little 24" Black mission fig tree produced about 40 figs. I'll be adding more varieties. And when I end up with big harvests, I'll probably give them away to family and friends (have a big family here in the valley) get creative and use them in various dishes at the family parties, and if I get too many, sell the rest at the farmer's market or something. There's a house about half a mile from mine with a beautiful fig tree (might be Black Mission or Black Jack??) and they let tons of fruit just fall on the ground on the outside of their fence. I picked a bunch last year... I think I'll have a talk with those folks and see if I can talk some sense into them.)

    Bookmark   April 9, 2010 at 6:09PM
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token28001(zone7b NC)

My plan is to eat as many as I can fresh. When I become overwhelmed, I'll freeze a lot of them. They're great in the fall straight from the freezer. It's like having fig popsicles. Others will be given to a friend that makes perserves and jams. She'll give me a few jars in return. I'll also be freezing tomatoes and peaches this year too. During winter, I prefer frozen foods from my own gardens to anything I can buy at the grocery store. And figs are one of those things you just can't find unless you allow yourself to taste those horrible Newtons.

    Bookmark   April 10, 2010 at 6:43AM
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We have no issues with too many figs. Tons of issues with too little of the goodness. Promote figging is one option with extras. You will be surprise how many people do not know how yummie real fresh figs can be. In my case, many people I meet are even surprise figs can be grown in Canada. Finally, pot grown figs will never come close to an in-ground tree productivity and the flavor of each quality fig variant can be so complex & yet favourable.

    Bookmark   April 10, 2010 at 10:34AM
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Suzi AKA DesertDance Zone 9b

It will be a long time for me to have enough figs to worry what to do with them, but I make wine from all kinds of fruits, so I plan to make wine with my figs. I also plan to use them as appetizers with arugula, balsamic vinegar and blue cheese.

    Bookmark   April 10, 2010 at 10:56AM
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I wish one day (or one year) I will have that problem of too many fruits in my cold climate even though I have many trees some now 4-year old!

    Bookmark   April 10, 2010 at 11:56AM
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I eat as many fresh as I can. I like the idea of freezing them(never did it before). I usually just make preserves which I share with friends & family who like them. The wife & I keep a booth in area antique malls and along with the antiques, sell pints of fig preserves for $5/pt. Could probably get more(I've seen them as high as $8). We sell all we can make and they sell out early each season. Pear preserves sell just as well also.This is not why I grow figs---I grow them because I like them, lol. Just a way to get rid of the excess. Tim

    Bookmark   April 10, 2010 at 7:46PM
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I can't speak for other northerners but for me it has become more of a challenge than anything else. The figs are only secondary. In the northern climates we either grow fig trees in containers or go to elaborate measures to protect the fig trees that we grow outside and it is mostly done for the love to growing and the challenge it presents for us. The actual fig fruits are just an added bonus. I live in northern Ontario zone 4. I presently have eight varieties and l9 potted trees in total and plan to add some new ones to the list this year.. In most cases I supose its a case of whether they will survive for the next season and never even think about what we will do with all that fruit. We could brag to our friends about our sucesses I supose lol and maybe even share some with them.


    Bookmark   April 11, 2010 at 9:44PM
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Thanks for all the feedback.

40 figs from a little 2 foot tree...I'm jealous! Yes, I too hope to have a problem with having too many figs someday.I like fig jam too. I'd make some if and when I'm overloaded.

Around here you may be lucky to buy fresh figs for .60 to .85 each. I see some of the people that buy one or two figs and treat them like gold in the checkout line. A lot of the people I talk with never tasted fresh figs.

I used to have a green fig back in L.A. We got tons of figs from it. Used to eat them all and get cleaned out real good the next day. Figs, dates, custard apples...some of my favorite fruits.

    Bookmark   April 12, 2010 at 4:07PM
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If you are successful in freezing (and thawing) figs while maintaining some sense of their original taste/texture, please post your procedure. I tried several years ago (I think with Petite Negri) and I ended up with a liquidy mush.


    Bookmark   April 12, 2010 at 5:18PM
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bonsaist(Z6/ Bethlehem, Pa)

I don't like figs, I just grow them as a landscaping tree.
I only have 200 varieties to display the different colors.

    Bookmark   April 12, 2010 at 8:17PM
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Most of our figs go to our tortoises but we do get one every now and then. When our trees are more mature and produce more I hope to have enough to then offer to local restaurants.

    Bookmark   April 12, 2010 at 9:04PM
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Hi Keepitlow,

I had seen on Food Channel Alton Brown freezing Strawberries using Dry Ice(Carbon Dioxide). The fruits freeze v.fast and when you thaw the Fruit, it maintains its shape and can be eaten like a fresh fruit. It will not become a mush/jam!! So I think figs can be frozen using Dry Ice and if you do a google search, you can find some in our Area. Hope this helps

    Bookmark   April 12, 2010 at 11:18PM
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Bass, I caught that...you're full of it! I don't believe you for a second. haha

-Little John

    Bookmark   April 13, 2010 at 12:05AM
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I too caught that! Have to agree with little John. LOL

But I'm half way there myself.


    Bookmark   April 13, 2010 at 9:10AM
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bonsaist(Z6/ Bethlehem, Pa)

I was serious when I said the I don't like figs, I love figs.
When my trees start bearing, I would have some for breakfast, lunch, dinner, and also in between meals.

Whatever I don't eat I make it into Jams and different recipes.


    Bookmark   April 13, 2010 at 3:51PM
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I have completed 3200 units on my little farm. its been a hard work but now they are almost done for production and we'are all very exited about that... any good experiences I can share with fig lovers always a pleasure.

    Bookmark   September 16, 2012 at 1:00PM
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You got to be kidding. I have 14 producing trees. But not all trees are created equal some produce a lot and some produce very little. We have good harvest but was not enough considering 6 grand kids and 3 sons with families. Adding that gifts to my neighbors adding to that my ferocious appetite for sweet figs I am planning to have 30 trees.

    Bookmark   September 17, 2012 at 8:59PM
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Grow a Fig tree! Here is a tip! I have six huge fig trees. They are about 6 feet tall and very healthy. I took limb cuttings about 2 feet long and put them in the ground and they grew into trees. It only took 2 summers for them to get that big. They produced some figs the first summer. Bury the cuttings about 8 inches deep.They have to be kept well watered until their roots are established. You may want to start them in a pot, but it works and I know many people who do it this way in my home state of Alabama.

    Bookmark   April 2, 2013 at 12:16PM
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You don't know how many people ask me that question when they look at my orchard.
I reply, what do people do with all of those apples, pears, oranges...etc. My answer... sell them.
One man told me immediately, there is NO market for figs. I don't have any market research to prove him wrong, but I think he is.
My orchard is going to be a "pick-our-own" and farmer's market outlet. I am still a year or two away from matured fig trees or max fruiting.
They are going to be my retirement income...I hope. Thanks for asking.

    Bookmark   April 13, 2013 at 12:54PM
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My fig tree is producing even in Dec. in Florida. Been getting a couple dozen every day. There not as big as in the warmer months but they are a treat now. Use them in smoothies & pureed in cakes also add them sliced with cooked meats. Do freeze and make jams as needed.
Have two more on the other side of the house but they get more shade this time of the year so are barren. Have not tried eating the leaves yet but I will.

    Bookmark   December 22, 2014 at 1:44PM
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Merry Christmas
Over the years have cut back on fig trees , i eat them and give some to neighbors.

    Bookmark   December 22, 2014 at 6:26PM
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Merry Christmas Martin.

I have about 10-12 decent sized fig trees of different varieties. Some to eat fresh, some to make fig jam (some to eat, some to give away)-- I like creating the fig addiction in others. I really don't get enough figs over the bearing season (June-November here).


    Bookmark   December 23, 2014 at 6:09PM
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Have two Celestial trees on the side of the house that supply me with plenty of fruit to freeze for the winter months. Do use them in smoothies and in cooking meats and sauces. Try to keep them where I can reach to pick. Not bad for lasting 25 years and still producing.

    Bookmark   February 1, 2015 at 1:47AM
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