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Is this normal?

Posted by ladygabe NJ (My Page) on
Sun, Mar 7, 10 at 7:31

Hello everyone!

Some of you may remember that I had a root that split off when placing one of my figs in the ground last year. I took the chance and planted it and it grew beautifully, if a little stunted. It grew about 12 inches from April until Oct.

Being a small plant when winter came, I just left it in its pot and placed it in a small attic space easily accessible through one of the bedrooms in the house. Then with the holidays and events and birthdays I forgot all about it. I went in there today looking for some football equipment and there the little guy was....sprouting! When I first saw it (back in a dark corner) the ends were all white! Excuse my ignorance but I thought it was frost bitten, lol. Anyway, upon closer inspection, I have about 6 inches of growth on there! I moistened the soil and pulled it out. Is this normal? Should I leave it up there exposed to the cold for another month? Or can I let it start to warm and expose it to light? The roots will be three years old, but the plant only about 1. Any chance at all for figs this year?

TIA!!


Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: Is this normal?

  • Posted by tapla z5b-6a MI (My Page) on
    Sun, Mar 7, 10 at 11:17

If you do a search using the word 'etiolation' it will explain the lack of the pigment chlorophyll and the white growth.

It would have been much better if you could have kept it colder, longer. You need to get the plant into good light now, but you need to expose it to full sun gradually to prevent photo-oxidation (sunburn). It's very probable that the leaves formed may not be able to make the adjustment (I can explain this if you're interested) and will be shed, and that is an unfortunate waste of the tree's energy reserves.

If you leave the tree where it is, it will continue to push growth, using more and more of its stored energy (which is finite) to push foliage that will likely be shed. The more foliage it pushes, the lower its energy reserves become, until it no longer has the energy to push new leaves - at which point the entire organism fails.

Al


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RE: Is this normal?

Ok, so I moistened the soil and put the plant in a window. I also put it outside when the sun is not extra hot or high. Then bring it back in at night. The leaves are greening and the stem is greening slightly as well.

According to what you've stated, I may have gotten to it just in time. When I pulled it out of the attic some leaves were already sitting in the soil. But it has not dropped a leaf since. Is this a good sign?

On another note, we've had a very rough winter. Tons of snow and several weeks (months even) of below freezing temps. One of my trees was never taken out of the ground or protected at all. Is this dead? Any chance that at least the roots survived? It was buried for at least 2 weeks under a couple of feet of snow.

Thanks so much again for the help!


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RE: Is this normal?

  • Posted by tapla z5b-6a MI (My Page) on
    Wed, Mar 10, 10 at 18:07

"Is this a good sign?"

Time will tell, but leaves can adapt to changes in light only over a certain range. Explaining is a little difficult, but lets say that light levels are graded from 1-10 with 1 being dark and 10 being the brightest light. If you have a plant growing at a level of 5, the plant might only be capable of adjusting to light levels 2-3 levels on either side of 5. If it goes outside of that range, the leaves will be shed and the plant uses stored energy to push a new flush of growth. The problem with your plant is that the leaves grew at a light level of 1 0r 2, and the plant prefers to grow in light levels of 8-10, so it's unlikely the leaves will be able to make that large of an adjustment w/o abscising, but you can hope. ;o)

Snow is your friend, in that it insulates and traps geothermal heat in the ground. It is not snow, frozen soil, or freeze/thaw cycles that kills trees, it is tissue being subjected to killing low temperatures. Read more about cold-hardiness by reviewing my comments in the thread linked to below.

Al

Here is a link that might be useful: More about cold-hardiness here


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RE: Is this normal?

Well, so far so good Al! The leaves are getting bigger and greener and new growth is appearing. I had a dream it had figs, lol. I must really love this poor little thing. Its small and may not have figs for years, but it has heart :-) Its my Charlie Brown fig tree!

Soooo, hopefully my outside tree survived. I guess I wont know until I see growth? Is there a deadline? Nothing by May pull it out?

Thanks for all the advice!

~M


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RE: Is this normal?

Guess what...My Black Jack...the one left out side, is bursting at the seams! It not only survived, but is flourishing! Im so happy :-)

Just had to say that!


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RE: Is this normal?

  • Posted by tapla z5b-6a MI (My Page) on
    Tue, Apr 6, 10 at 22:13

Figs and mulberries always sleep in. ;o) I'm really happy for you!!!

Al


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RE: Is this normal?

i love it when folks actually take time to bump old threads and give updates! it doesn't happen enough!


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RE: Is this normal?

Thanks Al, Im very happy too! Oh and my little guy from the attic is doing very well also. Getting big and full and has new growth every day.

satellitehead...not sure if that was sarcasm or you meant it? Either way, I figured this was better than wasting space with a brand new thread. And well, no one else in the world cares about my figs but you guys get it, lol. So I had to spread my joy :-)

Thanks!!
~M


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RE: Is this normal?

  • Posted by tapla z5b-6a MI (My Page) on
    Wed, Apr 7, 10 at 10:16

You're just FULL of good news, aren't you?! ;o)

He's a good guy - rarely sarcastic, so I'm sure he was sincere.

Al


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RE: Is this normal?

M, I actually really meant it.

Nothing is more frustrating than actually using the search feature (like everyone should BEFORE posting) and finding an incomplete thread about a topic because the original poster didn't bother to "bump" the old thread, or opted to just create a new thread without trying to find the old one.

It's always a pleasure to be able to click on a thread and read it from start to conclusion - you can actually learn a lot from reading a full experience!

So, thanks!


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RE: Is this normal?

Thanks guys :-) FTR Im ok with sarcasm, lol. But when its written its hard to read tone/intent.

And I 100% agree that having the entire back story on a comment/question makes things much easier. Tho, I have been guilty of asking questions that have been well discussed. Sometimes the forum is hard to search when you want a very specific answer. Especially when it pulls 900 matching threads. But I'm getting better and haven't done it in a least 3-4 weeks :-x

Thank you all for your support!

~M


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RE: Is this normal?

http://www.flickr.com/photos/88361884@N00/sets/72157623807320092/

I do not have photo bucket and don't know how else to post pics. I am linking a fig album I just made in Flickr. Hope you guys can see...and help with an ID problem!

Here is a link that might be useful: Fig album


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