What a 30 year old neglected fig tree looks like

budbackeast(FLORIDA)June 23, 2012

Here is a fig tree in Port Richey, FL that is by the owner's admission totally neglected. It's about 30 years old and has never been fertilized, pruned, or even watered

There must be two hundred figs on the tree right now. The nice lady tells all passersby to just stop and help yourselves to all you want any time. Sweet deal for me! Seems to be Brown Turkey variety. Rust on leaves, but so what. This tree answers the question of whether the brown rust on leaves will hurt the tree or limit the fruit. Not always!

So maybe there is hope for fig tree growers... let it grow long enough, and just maybe it will begin to bear lots of fruit.

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Centurion_(Verde Valley AZ Z8)

That's a beautiful tree. Note that the leaves on the lower 2/3 of that tree appear larger than the leaves higher up. Do you suppose the smaller leaves are that way because they get more direct sun exposure? As opposed to the lower leaves, which are shaded in part by the leaves higher up?

    Bookmark   June 23, 2012 at 9:41PM
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Hi Centurion,

Yes, the difference in appearance is remarkable. I'm guessing that the top is suffering from drought. We're getting tropical rains this week, but it's been a rough year. I figure the top half of the tree has been damaged by the sun and the heat and the drought.

Still, it is one huge tree, just loaded with fruit.

Try to count the figs in this one photo. The whole tree is like this. I am so impressed, as my little trees have given me less than twenty ripe figs all year. But wait- I am given permission to go eat this lady's figs any time I want!

It's a good year. A very good year.

    Bookmark   June 23, 2012 at 10:09PM
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noss(Zone 9a Lafayette, LA)

Hi Bud,

How do the figs taste? Please show us the fruit whole, eye end and cut open?

Nice tree.


    Bookmark   June 24, 2012 at 3:54AM
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Hi Noss,

Just another Brown Turkey Fig tree. Smallish brown fruit. Sweet with decent flavor. This is the kind we had when I was a kid. Ours was similarly prolific. Planted around 1972, our family tree is still there, but has been pruned again and again. Who needs fruit way up where you cannot get them?

And hey, wanna see my back yard now?

Please show me your garden/fig trees too!

    Bookmark   June 24, 2012 at 9:19AM
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Tiffany, purpleinopp GardenWeb, Z8b Opp, AL(8B AL)

This tree is about 40 years old. Turkey fig.

    Bookmark   June 24, 2012 at 10:09AM
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WOW! What a fig tree!

Is that one yours? What variety? Tons of figs?

What an impressive tree.

You know, the Buddha sat under a fig tree the day he became the 'Enlightened One'. Bet it was a fine looking tree like yours. I wonder if sitting under a fig tree would work for me too.

Just a second...

Um, nothing yet.

    Bookmark   June 24, 2012 at 11:01AM
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noss(Zone 9a Lafayette, LA)

LOL, Bud! If I got into that postition, I'd never be able to get back out of it. :)

The BT that I got from JF&Exotics had leaves like that and so did the little TX Everbearing tree I got from someone in town. They reminded me of Celeste leaves and figs, only without the richer flavor of the Celeste.

That's another nice video from you. Thanks.


    Bookmark   June 24, 2012 at 10:54PM
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Tiffany, purpleinopp GardenWeb, Z8b Opp, AL(8B AL)

LOL, bud! Thanks & love your "pose." You kind of look like my little brother, interesting.

That tree is a turkey fig in my Mom's yard. It makes so many figs, just what we can reach is usually way too many. I took that pic 2-3 years ago right after I pruned it extremely heavily. You can't tell, but I removed all of the growth from inside so we could "step into it" and pick from inside & out... or hide a bus full of kids. Great for climbing in there, too.

It needs pruning again, which I will do later this summer after the figs are gone. Some of the branches are laying on the ground again. The original owner of the home gets the credit for the beautiful "bones" of the tree, though. All I have done is maintain what was already done so well, removing crossing branches, those going straight down, etc... I'm still not sure how he got it into such a nice "low vase" shape instead of the "naked trunk" appearance of most other trees I've seen in the area, but I've only been a southerner for 5 years, still a lot to learn about the plants & trees that are new to me here. I hope the baby trees from my cuttings will grow up to be even in the neighborhood of such fantastic-ness!

    Bookmark   June 25, 2012 at 10:17AM
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Hey purpleinopp,

The largest fig tree I ever saw was in Spartanburg, SC about 20 years ago. Loved living there. Just some guy's front yard, but the tallest, bushiest, healthiest and most fruitful tree. But I must say... yours is one awesome tree.

I have two Chicago Hardy trees here which are both 3 years old. In the spring of 2011, I took a cutting and potted it and gave it to the FedEx guy. This morning, I went to his house to fix his dishwasher, and there was my former cutting. He said that last year, he got about 40 figs. Heck, the mother plant only gave me about 15 of them. Here is the FedEx guy's tree today:

No mulch, some weeds. Just dirt. Doing great!

Whatever you are doing, just keep doing it!

    Bookmark   June 25, 2012 at 9:37PM
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This fig tree is 25 years old and still producing. Have another one in front of it the same size, It is between two houses so is protected from winds. Do thin them out for air circulation and picking. Fertilize them starting in Feb when they get new leaves. Each tree fruits at different times. Gives me time to prepare them for freezing and sharing.

    Bookmark   December 24, 2014 at 9:07PM
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Bradybb WA-Zone8

Here's a few photos I took about three years ago,walking through a Seattle neighborhood,looking for a reported,large Loquat tree in the area.
I'm unsure of the Fig variety or the age.There are two in the backyard of this residence and obviously unattended. Brady

    Bookmark   December 25, 2014 at 2:28AM
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dirtguy50 SW MO z6a(6a)

Sueanne, where are you located? Nice looking inground tree for sure.

    Bookmark   December 25, 2014 at 11:39AM
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Live in Central Florida so the trees get enough chill time and plenty of sunny days to produce. Have a well for irrigation so the leaves stay green. Fertilizing does help keeping them producing.

    Bookmark   February 1, 2015 at 2:01AM
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