fig trees

hammerl(z5-6 Amherst NY)August 17, 2006

I've got a fig tree that I acquired in May. It's grown to about 3.5 feet tall, and appears to have at least five teeny figs (smaller than a pea) on it, but looks really healthy. My sister has one from the same batch of plants, it's less than two feet tall and has four golf ball sized figs on it. I'm assuming my figs are way behind schedule? When do fig trees normally bear fruit in WNY? I am in Amherst.

PS - anyone know what kind of fig would be hardy in Williamsville? My cousin was telling me about a friend with a huge fig tree off Main St. in Williamsville/Amherst, winter protected only by some brush (and not brought inside or buried or anything, apparently she doesn't even like the fig tree!). Mine is probably going to be sheltered in an insulated (but unheated) florida room.


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gottagarden(z5 western NY)

I've only ever heard of people burying their fig trees to protect them from the cold. Haas Nursery used to sell these, the owner said he would lay the plant down and cover the whole trunk, etc. with dirt. I do not know of any that you could just put in the ground and leave there, they are not really hardy.

    Bookmark   August 20, 2006 at 6:58AM
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I grow 9 fig trees in ground here in the Syracuse suburbs. There is no need to cover the fig trees in the fall, they come back from ground level every June and grow bigger each year. At least they do here and I've had them for over 15 years. Some years I get figs, some years they don't get big enough before the first freeze. But, if you want to get big figs and want it to grow into a tree instead of a bush, then I would cover it with straw and place a plastic tarp on it for the winter. Everything under the straw should grow back the next year, any branch exposed above the straw will die.

Here is a picture of two fig trees near my house I took it almost three weeks ago, they are much bigger today. The one on the right has branches coming way out into the doorway now and is about 6ft high.

At the beginning of August I took this picture of my largest fig tree. It produces the most fruit (purple figs) and has nearly taken over my vegetable garden.

Sorry, I don't know the names of my fig trees, I have ones that produce purple figs and ones that produce white figs. They all came from my grandparent house. My grandparents came to the suburbs of Syracuse from Italy and grew figs into huge trees for over 30 years. Our family stopped protecting those six large figs trees in the mid 1990s. Today they grow like my fig trees, starting over from the ground each year.

If you are looking for "hardy fig trees" Logee's sells

1. Ficus Carica Danny's Delight
2. Ficus Carica Chicago Hardy

and another one that I heard was "hardy" is Brown turkey. I think my grandparents had one brown turkey fig tree, it was the only fig tree they had that didn't spread much and didn't get that big.

Good Luck!

Here is a link that might be useful: Logee's website

    Bookmark   August 21, 2006 at 12:49AM
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gottagarden(z5 western NY)

chrisltropical - that's great! Nice to see your photos and what is possible. You're a zone warmer than us, but maybe . . . .
I love hearing what people have growing around here.

    Bookmark   August 29, 2006 at 8:40PM
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