Fig recommendation needed

nancyk(6)June 10, 2005

I would like a recommendation of a fig tree(or fig info. site)for ne Tenn. My husband planted ours over ten years ago, they are more like bushes than trees. I just pruned out last years branches that did not regrow, which was about 90% of the stalks. So we have had 8 ft. tall dead stalks in our yard for over 8 months, I am ready to bushhog the darn plant. The figs don't get ripe until October, then either the deer get them or the frost gets them.

A few days ago I saw a neighbors tall fig tree, she said she got it at Lowes, it was 4 years old, to plant it on the northside of a building, and that last year they had figs all summer long, the figs just kept coming. Unfortunately she did not know the name of it. She said so far they have not pruned it, it looks entirely different(tho the leaves are the same)in the way it is growing than ours, which seem to regrow from the ground each year.


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amazondoc(mid-TN, z 7)

The three most common varieties in TN are Brown Turkey, Celeste, and Hardy Chicago.

If yours is having to regrow from the roots every year, then you probably have it planted in a location that is too exposed to winter wind and cold. Try putting it against the south side of the house, or in a sheltered location.

Figs usually have two crops during the year. But when they freeze to the ground, they don't develop the first crop. That's why yours is only producing in October. Try to shelter it more, add mulch, add some sort of barrier -- anything to keep it a bit warmer and save more wood. Good luck!

    Bookmark   June 10, 2005 at 3:48PM
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maternut(7 west tn)

Brown Turkey and put it on the south side.

    Bookmark   June 10, 2005 at 10:10PM
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I believe that is the answer, the main planting(4 plants) is entirely in the open, on our front lawn. Totally exposed. Can these be transplanted to a new location, or is it better just to start over with a smaller plant? If you plant it near/next to a building, will the roots disturb the foundation?
Our neighbors, with the big fig tree, told me to be sure to plant it on the northside(that is how theirs is planted). I would think planting it on the northside would help to keep it from early breaking dormancy. That is what kills our perismmon crop each year.
Thanks so much.



    Bookmark   June 11, 2005 at 10:06AM
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amazondoc(mid-TN, z 7)

Yeah, I get really confused about the south/north question. The south side stays warmer, but the north side will help to prevent early bud break. But all the "experts" say south for figs, so that's what I'd go with. Either that, or both north AND south. :-) In any case, probably the biggest issue is to create a windbreak.

Figs are really tough critters in general, so it's certainly worth trying to dig the whole plant up. If it's got too many roots to get out, then take some suckers or some new cuttings. Figs are VERY easy to root.

    Bookmark   June 11, 2005 at 11:26AM
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mww181(7 TN)

I have Celeste and Brown Turkey. The Celeste has been the best for me by far. One thing with the Celeste though is that it always drops the first crop, it doesn't mature on this variety no matter what. The second crop comes in August and is plentiful. My Brown Turkey isn't as hardy either and has never produced a fig for me.

    Bookmark   June 11, 2005 at 9:14PM
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There's a 'TN Mountain Fig' which is Celeste, or a supposedly more winter-hardy sport of Celeste, that might work well for you. Hardy Chicago and Sal's Fig are a couple other that get good reviews for overwintering well.
After a number of years of having my in-ground, unprotected figs in the orchard freezing to the ground every year, I decided to bite the bullet and just start some cuttings in containers and stick 'em under the house every winter. Seemed like the only plausible way for me to ensure getting any fruits.
You might check out the Figs Forum for more info, and also the NAFEX Fig page, and for all the info you'd ever want on figs, Google up Ray's Figs & Stuff page.

Here is a link that might be useful: NAFEX Figs

    Bookmark   June 15, 2005 at 12:48PM
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decolady01(7a/6b AL/TN)

I have an Italian Honey Fig planted next to our barn in Lincoln County. The first couple of years it froze to the ground in the winter and had to start over. Year before last that didn't happen, so last year we got some figs - about 2 dozen. The tree did not freeze at all this past winter and is now LOADED with figs.

Since this tree is now established, I have put in a Tennessee Mountain Fig. I also got cuttings from two fig trees (I do not know the varietes) after reading Ray's Figs pages. One was from an old tree growing in Franklin County and the other is from our family homestead in Louisiana. Not sure how well the LA will do here, but I think the other two will be successful.

    Bookmark   June 18, 2005 at 11:38AM
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I have a Celeste that has grown between 2.5-3 feet in one season.It is planted on our south side of our house, and has wind protection from the north and east.Does anyone know of a simple shelter to build, as last year i pretty much lost all growth due to cold.It was in a more exposed spot last year.If this works well, I would like to ret another variety,

Thanks to all

    Bookmark   September 9, 2007 at 9:33AM
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