Sicilian June Figs

armandlioneDecember 25, 2008

About 10 years ago I was given a fig cutting by a neighbor who said her husband had brought it here from Sicily in the 60s. She said it was a "Sicilian June Fig" and that there were also July and Sept producing varieties in Sicily.

It's a very productive variety with a typical fruit that ripens in July and August.

I confess to only a limited search for Sicilian fig info, but I thought I'd ask here if anyone has heard about varieties among Sicilian figs (other than "White", mentioned elsewhere on the forum, which I look forward to seeing myself).

Thanks,

Armand

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paully22

I think the Sicilian fig guru is "Gorgi". A search in this forum would give you some info. It would be interesting if you have pictures. Merry Christmas.

    Bookmark   December 25, 2008 at 2:47PM
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boizeau(7a)

I think figs, more than most fruits, suffer from a litany of local jargon names and aliases. They have been around for hundreds of years and many well transported by illiterate farmers, who would just give the fig tree a 'local' name.
Of the 6 varieties I have, 3 are ?'s which were sold to me as One thing, but just being on this forum shows that the ID is wrong.
If you can load up a photo on this forum, a lot of the other growers would have a shot at guessing the ID

    Bookmark   December 25, 2008 at 3:37PM
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hlyell

Hello Armand,

Is your fig a light or dark colored fig? If you would be willing to trade some cuttings I would be very interested. You can write me at HL@comcast.net, and I'll give you a choice of my fig varieties.

Merry Christmas!

Henry

    Bookmark   December 25, 2008 at 4:52PM
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dieseler

Dad was from Bari Italy and left school in the 7th or 8th grade their came to this country and had many friends at the club both farmers and fisherman who left school early to help family put food on table, illiterate NO, not well educated yes but most important had common sense and dignity and love of family unlike some folks that are well educated go figure. Anyways he used to bring home figs from the club and his friends who brought sticks from italy light and dark types , dad never mentioned any names but i always along with him liked the dark types more. I believe the hardy chicago is 1 from Sicily were its name was lost and given that name cause it thrived in the climate here.
Martin

    Bookmark   December 25, 2008 at 8:46PM
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boizeau(7a)

I am just as 'guilty' of giving some of my plants arbitrary names. No offense to the old country farmers.
There are likely about 5 names for the grape Niagara depending where you live in the USA. When a local gardener doesn't know the original name, they provide another. It is not deliberate sabatoge, but just a way to make sense of the garden.
I had my 'Desert King' fig for over ten years before I knew what its 'official name' was.

Boizeau.

    Bookmark   December 25, 2008 at 8:52PM
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gorgi(z7a_NJ)

Armand,

First of all, a big WELCOME to this good GW Fig Forum.
You stick-around, and we all will turn you into a fig-nut!

I do have a small ethnic Sicilian fig collection
(mostly dark), but I do not consider myself really
an expert there
(thanks anyway, paully22 ... for the complement!).
I may have some available twigs for you in exchange
for your "Sicilian June Fig" (I presume - a white fig?).

I will soon be contacting you (privately) via email.

George (NJ).

    Bookmark   December 27, 2008 at 3:11PM
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fignut

A common name for June ripening figs in Italy is San Pietro (feast day June 29). There are at least two that I know of that go by that name - one dark, one light.
I'm just saying that it might be worth checking out.
Scroll to San Pietro at bottom of page for a picture of the dark one: http://www.figtrees.net/
For the light one go to Figs4Fun, choose Varieties.
Good Luck.

Here is a link that might be useful: Figs4Fun

    Bookmark   December 27, 2008 at 4:53PM
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pam225

Hi Armand,

By any chance are you parting with any cuttings of this fig tree? My husband is Sicilian, and my children (one of which is not his by birth...but has decided that she IS Sicilian because she wants to be...don't ask!) are very proud of their Sicilian heritage and would think it was neat to grow this in our back yard along with our brown fig.

I don't really think I have anything to trade...last year was my first full year of "real" gardening. I do have some seeds for long hots if you're interested...I could send you some. Or I could pay s&h.

Figured it was worth asking...you can email me directly at pambrigandi@yahoo.com

Thanks!

Pam
Havertown, PA

    Bookmark   January 16, 2009 at 11:42AM
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italiangirl74(6)

Ciao Pam, I am not Sicilian, but I am Italian from the mainland of Italy. I'm glad to see your children are proud of their Sicilian/Italian roots, we are a good hardworking people who have left possitive marks all over the world, especially here in the U.S. If you are looking for Sicilian figs, there are others that are of Sicilian Heritage. Peters Honey, a more readily available fig is from Sicily. Hardy Chicago, which the Sicilians call Mongibello, is a Sicilian fig originally from near Mt. Etna. Sal's Corleone, another more readily available fig is also from Sicily, in no way associated with the Corleone family of the Godfather, but named for the Town, Corleone, Provincia di Palermo, Sicily. Ficazzana I believe to be also a Sicilian because the word to me is a Sicilian type. I hope this helps, Ciao Maggie

    Bookmark   January 16, 2009 at 2:38PM
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pam225

Hi Maggie,

This helps a bunch!

I am Abruzzese - my father was born in Teramo. My husband's father side is from Sicily, and his mother's side is from...I'n not sure where, but his great-grandmom "came over on the boat" (as did my my grandmother, grandfather, dad, aunt, and uncle).

So...my 16 year old is Italian by my genes and is VERY PROUD of her heritage...took 3 very painful years of Italian (repeated Italian 1) because "she was Italian"...! This same child has spent portions of the last 3 summers in Central America w/Girl Scouts, so I think Spanish would have been more approriate! (haha) But...she's a proud Italian.

My 14 year old is taking Latin so she can go to Italy on the Latin trip in 2 years (the kids who take Italian don't go...I don't understand that!). She looks a lot like my DH's father side of the family, and almost has Spanish looks to her (well...we all know that Sicilians are a mix from Italians, Spanish, and Moors).

Once our kids finally graduate, we'd love to just uproot ourselves and move to Italy (but France's healthcare looks better)....but that would be right about the time that my oldest (who is now 21) will probably start having babies and we won't want to go then...

My father always had this fig...stick...it was supposed to be tree but I swear it looked like just a stick...in the backyard. It never had fruit in my 43 years, my mother always used to tell him to get rid of it, but I remember him wrapping it in burlap, etc. My kids remember, also, which is why the whole fig thing is important (I guess?)

Thanks for the info...I have more research to do I guess!

Take care,

Pam
Havertown, PA

    Bookmark   January 16, 2009 at 7:14PM
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italiangirl74(6)

Ciao Pam, I also am Abruzzese. I come from a small town named Castel Frentano, in Chieti, Abruzzo. Yes, the fig thing is very important, they were always such an important part of Italian life and culture. There was always a fig tree, and its important for the children to keep up this tradition and most of all the appreciation, the stories, and the traditions that go along with the fig trees. I have the above fig trees mentioned earlier except hardy chicago. I would send you some cuttings in future, also a wonderful Abruzzesi. We will chat again. Ciao Ciao, Maggie

    Bookmark   January 16, 2009 at 7:38PM
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ejp3(7NY)

Any info on a variety I picked up from Bill in Flemington called sicilian? He got it from Italian fig trees in N.J. and they dont seem to have it this year. I love Bill but I wish he researched his varieties more thoroughly. I know there are a million sicilian figs but did anyone get this fig from Bill? Thanks.

    Bookmark   April 10, 2010 at 8:44PM
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gorgi(z7a_NJ)

I visited Al of Itaialn Fig Trees in 2006
(when I bought my Melanzana).

I specifically asked him about his
Sicilian Black fig. He said that it is just that,
aka. a "Sicilian" fig and is NOT a "Sal's" fig.
He also mentioned that he no longer sell or even has it.
When asked why, he said that his other figs are "better".

    Bookmark   April 12, 2010 at 4:55AM
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bonsaist(Z6/ Bethlehem, Pa)

I have that Sicilian dark fig. I picked a few figs from it last summer.

They were good.

Bass

    Bookmark   April 12, 2010 at 5:59AM
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