where are my figs???

streganonnaJune 23, 2013

I have a Brown Turkey that I planted 3 years ago. It has several dozen branches and is about 4 feet by 4 feet. It looks healthy and happy but I've never gotten a single fig from it. Last year I bought a Celeste in a gallon container and set it by the Brown Turkey. I suppose I thought it would "inspire" my older fig. I never planted the Celeste and it over wintered in my garage. It now has two branches about 2 feet in length and has four tiny figs growing on it, but I can't find a single fig on my Brown Turkey!
I did some light pruning on my Brown Turkey early this year, before it began to bud, as I want to keep it more "shrub" than tree.
Any idea what could be happening?

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Are both trees leaves shaped the same? Just because you bought a BT does not mean that is what you got. I bought a BT that turned out to be Celeste and it produced better in a pot than the ground, although it has grown very well. I dug some suckers and potted them and they also produced a few figs while the mother dropped most of the few it had last season. All are headed to fig heaven.

BT is a productive tree, you do not have a BT if it has shown no figs for 3 years...

    Bookmark   June 23, 2013 at 11:38PM
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Hoosierbanana - What an interesting question! The "BT" is very wide - sort of bowl shaped. The Celeste looks like it might do well as an espalier. I kept the label from the BT which I bought from a nursery. Should I contact Monrovia (the grower?) or the nursery? If it's not a BT, will it not fruit? Should I rip it up?
Thank you for replying.

    Bookmark   June 24, 2013 at 9:21AM
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Before you rip the tree, you can make some fig leaves tea so at least there is some use of this fig tree that never gave you any fig fruit!

    Bookmark   June 24, 2013 at 4:44PM
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That leaf does look right for BT. Our circumstances are quite different it seems... It is odd that it has not produced any figs though.

I can't imagine Monrovia or the garden center doing anything for you. I would ride it out for one more season at least.

It looks like your tree needs pruning and that may help it produce figs. One thing you can do now is to pinch the tips of the largest growths, this sometimes helps to produce figs. It will also make them branch out. Remove thin and weak growths in a few weeks to give the main trunks more light and water from the roots to grow strong.

You can also lime the soil a little to raise the ph, most soils on the east coast are at least slightly acidic. Do not fertilize though because too much nitrogen reduces fruiting.

Good luck. If you would like a more reliable and adaptable variety try one such as Hardy Chicago, Marseilles Black vs, Sals, Gino's Black or another "Etna fig".

    Bookmark   June 24, 2013 at 9:15PM
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Trying using a fertilizer that promotes fruiting. Phosphorus and Potassium should help with fruiting. If you want you could trying pinching and adding Nitrogen to promote newer green growth. You will get a bushier fig bush. Just get some balanced organic fertilizer in N-P-K. 6-6-6 or 10-10-10 should work.

    Bookmark   June 25, 2013 at 12:34AM
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Is your Brown Turkey getting enough sunlight? A fig tree in shade can look happy, even with big leaves but if it is light shade, the fig crop will be lessened or not at all. If it is in shade, let it grow until the leaves fall in Autumn, then dig and transplant it to a sunny location.. C.H.

    Bookmark   June 30, 2013 at 3:20PM
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Tiffany, purpleinopp GardenWeb, Z8b Opp, AL

That's just a tiny little thing, give it some time, in both years and on the calendar this year. Just now seeing baby figs down here, much later than previous years, last year my notes say on June 19 that the figs here were ripe. The more branches, the more figs.

    Bookmark   July 3, 2013 at 4:54PM
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