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Figs

Posted by bamboo_rabbit 9A Inverness FL (My Page) on
Tue, Jul 23, 13 at 12:28

Last summer I decided to greatly expand my fig collection so started gathering varieties and arranging for cuttings. Lou gave me a couple varieties as well. Last November the fig cuttings started to arrive in the mail and I was busy rooting them in bags of moss and once rooted growing them out in cups.

 photo IMG_2586_zpscaba3bd5.jpg

Then in to 1 gallon pots and the first batch was ready and I put them in the ground March 1 2013. That is the right hand panel in the picture below. The middle panel was taken June 10th and the final left hand picture last week. From 6" long pieces of unrooted wood in November to 5 foot tall shrubs today, probably 7 or 8 feet tall by fall. The plants already have figs on them so will get to taste them this summer.

I put another 17 varieties in the ground last week so 40+ varieties now in ground and growing about 70 varieties so far.


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For those that have never had a ripe fig they are to die for. Some people say they don't like figs probably because they have never had a truly ripe one. They range from fig newton type flavors to deep dark richness I can't describe to figs that taste like honey to green outside red inside that taste like peaches, strawberries and blackberry jam.


Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: Figs

I have 2 fig trees. 2 varieties. I agree, Nothing like a fresh fig. Before I grew them I would order extra large and fancy in the mail. They were expensive but worth it.

But 70 trees? Will you sell some of the fruit? A lot of figs for one house. But I understand the enthusiasm because I eat fresh figs!


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RE: Figs

Shavedmonkey,

I have not crossed the what to do with them bridge yet:) I am sure I will weed out some that don't suit me but still.....I know you can make wine out of them. I have a flock of ducks and chickens so I am sure they will take their share.


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RE: Figs

I just acquired 5 little fig trees and I thought I had a lot. I wish I had more than a postage stamp yard. I haven't had the pleasure of tasting any ripe figs yet. Years ago I considered getting a fig tree so I tasted figs from the grocery store to see if they were worth it. They were awful, so I gave up on figs.

I later heard that only fresh figs of good varieties tasted good, so I got Green Ischia, Alma, Petit Negri, a purple Italian one, and Violette de Bordeaux. Some have little figs growing on them, so I'm excited.

Let us know how your figs do. I'd like to know which do best in Florida.


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RE: Figs

I'm with Amberoses. Definately keep us posted on which ones do best and their flavors. I'm waiting for the fall clearance racks and to see if I can get some cuttings here or there to get some growing. I have a tiny little plant, and I WANT more! LOL.


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RE: Figs

  • Posted by whgille Oakland FL Zone 9B (My Page) on
    Tue, Jul 23, 13 at 17:26

Bamboo, congratulations on your very ambitious project! good for you!

Silvia


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RE: Figs

After reading through this thread I went out and looked at my fig trees to see if any of the figs were ripe and lo and behold... one fat fig was ripe for the picking.... yummmm

Lou


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RE: Figs

  • Posted by saldut 9-10 st pete, fl (My Page) on
    Tue, Jul 23, 13 at 20:43

I have a fig I planted 30 years ago, a Brown Turkey...for years we ate them, and then we were invaded by a bug that laid eggs in them and they were full of maggots...yuck... so that was the end of my fig planting...that tree is still out there and I noticed it has some fruit on it, but now it is so huge I can't reach them to see if they are edible... I understood that nematodes love their roots, but that thing is still growing... I'd like to try again and thought that Brown Turkey was the one for Fla., but acc. to what I'm reading here, there are lots of others do well....where does one get all those varieties? What Nursery carries them? Thanx, sally


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RE: Figs

I'll be following this one as well. I have been wanting to grow figs, but the only variety I have heard about around here is Brown Turkey.

Bamboo's advice on blueberries hasn't steered me wrong, so I can't wait for the 411 on the figs.


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RE: Figs

Blueberries I know, have grown them my entire life. Figs though are a much newer love but I am learning:)

They are easy to grow. They like alkaline soil and our soil is slightly acidic but our ground water is so high in bicarbonates (liming agents) that the figs are happy in our unaltered soil. Figs are susceptible to Root knot nematodes though so a good thick layer of mulch should be applied around the fig to keep them at bay.

We get a lot of rain so a closed eye is very important and a fig that resists splitting in the rain.

There are far superior varieties to brown Turkey figs. For a short list I would say Celeste is an old stand by.....improved Celeste is even better or O'Rourke. Green Iscia or Strawberry Verte for green figs but there are many more that work. Far as the black figs some are very hard to find. I have all those on the list below and they are the cream of the crop of rich black figs for the south. Black Madeira and Figo Preto are widely considered the best tasting figs on the planet.


Black Madeira
Black Greek
Figo Preto
Col de Dame Noir
Petite Negri
Hardy Chicago
LSU Purple
LSU Scott's Black
LSU Black
MVSB
Ronde De Bordeaux
Violette De Bordeaux
Scott's Black
Late Black
Italian Black
Kathleen Black
Malta Black
Negronne
Niagara Black
Black Mission


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RE: Figs

I have had LSU purple for 5 yrs here and had it before in S. Louisiana. It does great in the humidity. I keep it on the sunniest side of the house away from any runoff situations that might get the leaves wet and it cuts down on rust getting on the foilage. It is very easy to propagate. The figs seem to have an underlying berry flavor to them. It sets a breba crop and then another in the summer.
Darn turkeys taught the chickens how to get the fruit so I need to get them fenced off now.

I recently got the Black Mission fig and an unknown markdown from Lowes lol. So far so good on those two.

Thanks for the heads up on good varieties to try. I hope to get many more.
Figs are the best!
I like to make a dish that has pork loin stuffed with figs, feta cheese, olives, mushrooms, onions and lots of herbs every time we get a crop.
~Lynn


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RE: Figs

  • Posted by saldut 9-10 st pete, fl (My Page) on
    Wed, Jul 24, 13 at 21:01

What nursery carries all those fascinating varieties? where do you get them? Please tell us Bamboo!! LOL, sally


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RE: Figs

What Sally said.


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I got my varieties from BR, lol, so I'm no help on that. But I have Celeste, Black Mission, Violette de Bordeaux, Pasqual, Green Ischia, and...Chicago Hardy? I can't find my list right now. Oh, and a Brown Turkey I got as a freebie at the farmer's market. Mine don't look as good as BR's, probably because I forget to fertilize them, but they are growing and have a couple of little figs already. I can't wait to taste them all!


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RE: Figs

Sally,

Well that is the problem....I don't know where you can get them. Some of the varieties are available commercially as 1 gallons but most are not. If you want to start cuttings like I did I know of a good source if you want it just email me. The cuttings are pretty cheap at $2 each. If you buy 3 of each variety you can be pretty sure at least one will make it.


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RE: Figs

  • Posted by saldut 9-10 st pete, fl (My Page) on
    Thu, Jul 25, 13 at 20:46

Thanx Bamboo, where is the source for the 1 gallon plants? LOL, sally


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RE: Figs

Bamboo - Very interesting having such an incredible variety of figs. I have 3 mature Celeste fig trees and I would also say that it is an excellent variety. I also have an Alma and LSU Purple. I don't care for the LSU Purple so I would like to replace it. Which variety would you say is the best Black Medeira or Figo Preto?

I'm interested in buying 3 cuttings, as you recommended. So, I need to send you an email to get the mail source. Thanks.

Christine


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Christine,

Some say Black Madeira and Figo Preto are the same thing....one just ripens earlier than the other.....no idea. I just recently acquired a Preto by trading but it arrived in rough shape, broken by the gentle hands on the USPS below the first set of leaves. When I got a chance I jumped at another one also small but made it here in 1 piece. Now the first one has resprouted which was good to see. I don't have black madeira yet but do have one promised to me.

Sally,

One place to get the one gallons would be Ebay, cuttings as well though any cuttings available now would not be fresh. There is also trees of joy. It really just depends on what fig you want. Some are easy and some you are going to have great difficulty finding. I still have a dozen varieties I want and it could literally take me years to acquire them.


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Bamboo - I had no idea that so many varieties of figs grew so well here. I find it very time consuming just to harvest the few fig trees that I have. I can't imagine how there will be enough hours in the day for you at harvest time!


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Bamboo - While I was doing some research about the Black Madeira figs, I came across a post on figs4fun that gave the very best illustrated instructions on how to root small fig cuttings: first in a baggie, then in clear plastic cups. Just like you are doing. Something I hadn't seen before. Obviously, it is working quite well.

Something else that I found out...that Black Madeira figs are prone to splitting in humid climates, When you get some figs from your plant please let us know how well they produce here. I checked out eBay which did have some plants that are going for a premium price.

Christine


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RE: Figs

Christine,

There are a LOT of fig varieties, over 1000.

My figs are going to be bushes and they will be kept small.

The baggie method is how I started mine, then cups.

The black Madeira is a very good fig for us in Florida and has almost no issues with splitting. Because it is a very late fig it tends to ripen when we are not getting a lot of rain so is a non issue. If it ripened during this time of year then yes it would or could have problems but lucky for us it doesn't.


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RE: Figs

Bamboo - That baggie, then clear plastic cup method looks nearly fool proof. When I propagate my figs I usually use a much larger piece than 8 " and I do it outside. However, when I have small cuttings to propagate, now I know exactly what to do.

That's wonderful about the black madeira being a late ripening variety. That's exactly what I'm looking for. Any other varieties that stand out among the rest?

Christine


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RE: Figs

Try a Green Ischia or a Strawberry Verte Green outside red inside and oh so good.


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RE: Figs

Bamboo can you tell me how far apart you plant your fig trees and what size you keep the trees/bushes?

How are those blueberry plants doing that you got from Blue Star nursery here in Hawthorne last year?


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RE: Figs

Bamboo, thank you for the posting. We live about 10 miles north of Inverness. It is wonderful to see such a wide ranging report on figs. When we lived in Inverness we only grew brown turkey, which we enjoyed very much. Now I have something to look forward to adding to our property.
Don


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RE: Figs

Joe,

The blueberries are doing fine. I did not allow them to fruit this year but next spring they are free to do as they wish. Up to just about 200 blueberries now.

On the fig spacing......that is a work in progress. Some bushes are planted as close as 5 feet apart as a hedge but that is just temporary as I evaluate the varieties and eventually they will be 10 foot spacing. The non hedge figs are 14 feet apart minimum.

Don,

The figs are just so rewarding as they grow so fast and produce so young. I actually have a separate fig project underway which is a Japanese step over espalier.


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RE: Figs

Bamboo - Please reveal your method for keeping the critters from eating the blueberries. This year most of my blueberry fruits got ruined from the late freeze and what few formed, I saw birds eating the berries while still white. So, bird netting? Something better in mind?

Christine


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RE: Figs

> I actually have a separate fig project underway which is a Japanese step over espalier.

Please post pics once you get that going, Bamboo.

I'm so jealous of being able to grow so many varieties, but I have to admit I wouldn't be up for the work maintaining such a large place.


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RE: Figs

Christine,

I guess I am just lucky? We have some big Blueberry fields around here, Ferris groves and Donna Miller Blueberries and most of the birds must bother them. We have a few resident cardinals that take berries and a few cat birds. This year was the first year I saw a mockingbird here ever...he stayed about a week then left, or somebody shot it, no clue. I know for most people the mockingbirds are the biggest pest but they don't like it here. The chickens and ducks like them:) but they are fenced out. They are a pain with the figs also and blackberries and raspberries and take every berry they can reach or jump for. The ducks have more manners than the chickens.

Writersblock,

I will take some pictures of the Japanese step over project for you tomorrow and post them.

This post was edited by bamboo_rabbit on Mon, Jul 29, 13 at 18:22


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Bamboo - I hate the idea of using bird netting. That's why I was hoping you had the perfect solution. You are so lucky that you aren't having trouble with the birds eating your blueberries.

Christine


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Christine,

I have a friend in the Village of Caroline in the Villages and he had mockingbirds take every single berry off his 5 bushes.... Are the mockingbirds what bother you also or is it crows?

Lou had good luck with the Mylar tape ribbons hung above his bushes. I recall he said it helped a ton,

This post was edited by bamboo_rabbit on Mon, Jul 29, 13 at 20:47


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Christine,

You could use a scarecrow motion activated water sprinkler for keeping critters away and the holographic bird scare tape for the birds. I've used both on different parts of the garden and they do work well. The holographic bird tape worked great around my blueberry patch. Type holographic scare tape in eBay search... under 10 bucks a roll.


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RE: Figs

Lou - I do use the holographic tape, hung from a double shepherds hook. It works great for squirrels but not so well for birds. I set them about 5 feet apart. The motion activated scarecrow sprinkler does sound good. I'll have to check that out.

Bamboo - There were a variety of small birds, including mocking birds. I didn't see any of the crows. When the crows come for the other fruits, they can wipe out a fruit tree in minutes. I don't like to see them hanging around.

Christine


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RE: Figs

Christine,
This is a picture of the scarecrow in action;


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RE: Figs

Before I fully fenced in the property hear I used one of those scarecrows. They do scare the daylights out of deer...neighbors that stop by to chat and one UPS driver who came down the drive with his side door open. They will work to some degree on birds but the bird triggering the thing is iffy at best. Walmart actually sells the Contech's now, saw them the other day.


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RE: Figs

Lou - Love the picture!!! Thanks for posting.

Wills - I appreciate you giving me the name of the scarecrow. I did a quick search and found that there are a few videos about it on YouTube. My blueberry patch is in an area of my yard where there will be no accidental waterings to people or vehicles. I can see that it will be a challenge to get a small bird to trip the on switch.

Christine


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RE: Figs

I have bought 3 figs from a Florida nursery (link below) and been pleased with the results.

You can probably best get figs via cuttings ("scion exchanges") in January. Just make sure your state Ag Dept has no restrictions. Problem is some people have mislabeled figs. Cuttings from figs within your state are better as the represent proven winners and disease is not as much of a problem because it is either present or not.

http://figs4fun.com/

http://encantofarms.com/ (California)

As was stated; search for closed (small) eye (ostiole) figs or honey figs to keep the bugs/rot out and cultivars that won't split when it rains. Why make it hard on yourself?

http://edis.ifas.ufl.edu/mg214

http://figs4funforum.websitetoolbox.com/post?id=4652491

http://www.lsuagcenter.com/NR/rdonlyres/69DF3014-F313-4784-AFEB-EAAC4125406E/61880/pub3018LouisianaFigsLOWRES.pdf

Here is a link that might be useful: figs for sale in FL


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RE: Figs

The above link is to Just Fruits and Exotics, my favorite nursery to order from. It seems like their fig selection has gotten even larger.

Does anyone grow the Texas Everbearing? The description says that it begins bearing in May. Sounds real early.

Christine


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RE: Figs

Christine,

Texas Everbearing is just brown turkey, at least most say they are the same thing but others think it is different but if it is different it isn't much different.

Just fruits is great. Wife and I took a ride up there a couple years ago and they are very nice people.


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RE: Figs

Wills,

Just Fruits gave a great review for Green Ishia. I may need to reconsider getting one of those cuttings too. I'll have to check the cuttings list you sent me to see if it's on there.

I have 3 large Celeste figs so if Texas Everbearing and Brown Turkey are all similar, then I don't want one of those.

Christine


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RE: Figs

This post has me dying to get some figs going. I usually eat dried figs in my quinoa for breakfast every morning. But I have never had a fresh fig until I read this post.

I went to Publix and they had 3 varieties - black mission, brown turkey and green calimyrna. I bought all three and wow, I love them all. The black missions are my favorite though, followed by the calimyrna. But man, they aren't cheap.

Now I have to have a couple fig trees.

I am renting for a little while, so I am relegated to growing in containers. If I wanted a black variety like mission and a green variety as well, what is recommended? Also, I would like to get a variety that is pretty easily accessible.

I usually see a lot of people selling figs on Craigslist in the spring, but there is not much out there now.


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RE: Figs

m5allen,

If you think the grocery store figs were good wait till you get a truly ripe one off your own tree. Just remember not to pick them until they droop down and crack a bit.

Figs grow great in containers so you are in luck. If it was me I would pick a green fig like strawberry Verte or Green Ischia...as one and for the dark a black Madeira or malta black. While the last two might not be the easiest to find my thought is if you are only going to grow a couple make them good!


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m5allen,

If you think the grocery store figs were good wait till you get a truly ripe one off your own tree. Just remember not to pick them until they droop down and crack a bit.

Figs grow great in containers so you are in luck. If it was me I would pick a green fig like strawberry Verte or Green Ischia...as one and for the dark a black Madeira or malta black. While the last two might not be the easiest to find my thought is if you are only going to grow a couple make them good!


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What time of year are figs ripe? My neighbor across the street has a HUGE brown turkey... giant tree... he gave me some figs about five or more years ago... I would like to ask nicely again but want to do it when the time is right. :)

Carol


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> But man, they aren't cheap.

If, like me, you're forced to buy store figs, know that publix always starts them off at double price as the setup for doing a BOGO when they really start coming in. In a week or two you'll be able to get two containers for what they cost today.


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RE: Figs

  • Posted by whgille Oakland FL Zone 9B (My Page) on
    Wed, Aug 7, 13 at 18:03

Carol

They are in season now in my area.

Figs from my settlers type fig and the big ones are Violette de Bordeaux

 photo August2013_002_zps4f204bd1.jpg

Silvia


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Oh Sylvia, those look fantastic! Would Brown Turkey be ready,, too? Looks like I need to have good timing when going to get my mail. :)

Carol


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  • Posted by whgille Oakland FL Zone 9B (My Page) on
    Wed, Aug 7, 13 at 18:23

Carol, the early figs have been ready for a long time here since I think last month, now I am getting the later figs.
I know that you like info, so here is a thread that I found about figs that is interesting from people that I valued their opinions very much.:) They are talking about food dehydrators but scroll down to the poster danab z9 when he talks about figs, grainlady and dcarch are awesome posters too, I always learn something from them.

Silvia

Here is a link that might be useful: old thread


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Silvia,

I hate to say this but there are no Violette de Bordeaux on your plate. VDB is a very dark fig, almost black. That is the problem with figs.....so many are mismarked or misidentified not to mention the same fig can have 5 different names. Take Violette De bordeaux for example it is also known as Beer's Black and Negronne among others.

Here is a link that might be useful: VDB

This post was edited by bamboo_rabbit on Wed, Aug 7, 13 at 20:51


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Bamboo - so the VDB has an open eye?

Can you recommend a black variety with a closed eye that will do well in the Tampa Bay area that is relatively easy to find?

Saw someone selling a Black Madeira for $60!!!


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M5Allen,

Heck sometimes on Ebay the harder to find figs go for several hundred dollars, have even seen the cuttings go for that much.

VDB has a fairly closed eye and does resist souring so it is ok for us.

Hardy Chicago is very good, easy to grow and ranks near the top of most peoples list. Another would be Malta Black but it would be harder to find. I might be able to help you out on either of those, drop me a email if you would like.


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  • Posted by whgille Oakland FL Zone 9B (My Page) on
    Thu, Aug 8, 13 at 8:44

Bamboo, don't worry because I am not sensitive, lol.

I picked those figs before a big rain that would ended up in splitting them, also my camera is not professional so the lightning is off. From the same source that I got the VDB I got a Negronne too, but that one didn't make it.

And now that you are the new fig expert, can you id my VDB fig? I had it in a container and it was recently planted, it is small like Dan said. I like that and the exquisite taste, great for fresh eating.

 photo August2013_005_zps60dbb880.jpg

Silvia


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Silvia,

I am FAR from a fig expert:) I have been reading up on all the varieties I grow trying to educate myself on the subject and on fig cultivation in the south in general. Maybe in 10 years I will have some expertise but for now I am just a very interested novice.

Because the VDB fruit is medium size and black even this novice could figure out that the big brown fig on your plate was not what you were told it was:) Far as ID I think I know what it is but would hate to just guess......if you don't mind I would be happy to repost your pictures at figs4fun and get an ID for you? Generally they want a picture of the fruit cut in half lengthwise as well but may not matter.

It is too bad you did not get a real VDB they are supposed to be awesome. I liked them so much they are what I chose to do my Japanese stepover projects with. With most I just have 1 plant of each variety but with the VDB have 6 of them for the stepovers.

Figs being sold as one thing but turn out to be another variety is rampant. For example I bought 3 figs locally from reputable nurseries (not big box stores) and NONE turned out to be the variety they were labeled as. It is one of the main reasons I went looking for a source of plants that would be what I was told they are.


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  • Posted by whgille Oakland FL Zone 9B (My Page) on
    Thu, Aug 8, 13 at 9:50

Bamboo, all my life (which is very long) I had great figs, so I was unhappily surprised of the taste of figs locally, that was the reason I posted in the fig forum a few years back to ask for advice. It has been a long time and the thread is no longer there when I asked about good varieties for Florida and Dan was nice enough to advise me. I cannot remember all the varieties that he recommended and I didn't keep any note because I figure with 3 figs is more than enough for me. In the same forum they advise me for the source to get figs, it is a private vendor, cannot remember the name (not cheap either) I didn't get a cutting, he used to post in the fig forum and everyone knows him and recommended, they also advise that time that some vendors an ebay were not reliable.
Feel free to use any of the pictures of my "impostor" VDB for anyone to ID, I don't have cut fruit for now because as soon as they are ready, I eat them. My neighbor has a brown turkey and is not that one, it really does not matter to me, it is delicious! and dwarf and I am happy, no more figs for me unless one dies and I don't think that is a chance for now.

Silvia


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Silvia,

I posted the pictures so we will see. Like you said the most important thing is that YOU like it. It is too bad you don't remember who sold it to you but mistakes happen. Did he sell you both the Negronne that croaked and the "VDB"?

Don't be so sure yours is not a brown turkey:) There are a BUNCH of different forms of brown turkey southern BT, English BT, California BT and a few more. It is like that with a lot of figs.there are several types of Celeste figs all slightly different from each other.


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>There are a BUNCH of different forms of brown turkey southern BT, English BT, California BT and a few more.

This is interesting, bamboo. I always thought I disliked brown turkey because the ones I've had have had rather hairy skins--very unpleasant to eat unpeeled. (The grocery store ones are like that, too.) Are there any brown turkey variants that are smooth?


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  • Posted by whgille Oakland FL Zone 9B (My Page) on
    Thu, Aug 8, 13 at 15:15

Bamboo, the same people that advice me on the vendors post in the other fig forum too, the vendors post there too. The one said something about waiting and the other one was ready so I bought from him. I put the two in different pots, the Negronne was strong and rapidly growing and I thought that it was a good idea to plant it in the ground and we got our first freeze right away and didn't make it. The impostor VDB was kept in a pot for about a year and then planted.
According to your expertise I have the best tasting brown turkey! they sure don't taste like that from the fruit farm near me, all their trees are brown turkey, celeste and I think alma which I also had and didn't care for that I got it from Fruit and Exotics.

And I went outside before the rain to pick figs again and I found this fig on the floor that somebody took it and drop it, who knows?

The impostor VDB, it sure tastes great, not this one but the others that I picked.:)

 photo August2013_006_zpsc9547af0.jpg

Silvia


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  • Posted by whgille Oakland FL Zone 9B (My Page) on
    Thu, Aug 8, 13 at 19:11

I found it, I found the old thread! Think whatever you like.:) Dan was right, I kept the older tree and is productive and good tasting! I still don't remember the vendor,lol.

Silvia

Here is a link that might be useful: varieties of fig old thread


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Silvia,

I'm confused......so now you know what the tree is?

Dan is knowledgeable it is too bad he was banned from all the boards. just did not play well with others.


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  • Posted by whgille Oakland FL Zone 9B (My Page) on
    Fri, Aug 9, 13 at 8:47

Bamboo, I remember the big fights between the brains of the forums, one was with Al from the container fame. I don't go to other forums very often, otherwise I would get no life, lol. I still have to do other things in my daily life and I would never pick up a fight, it is just not worth it, you don't even know their faces most times.
I am just as confused as you are, not!lol. Here is the complete story again. I bought one fig from a lady near by my house, she has like a private nursery and only people that knows her know about it. I asked her for fruit trees and she said she didn't know what kind of fig it was but it was planted long time by the settlers in the area. Since everyone had a brown fig, I figure it was that. Then I bought the Alma from fruits and exotics, I didn't plant it in the ground because I wanted to make sure I like the taste, taste was okay, it took too long to ripe, I got rid of it. I went to the fruit farm and they had no varieties that I like. By then my settlers fig had rust and look horrible, so I wanted to take it out and plant a Black Mission like I had in Arizona, but there it never rains so the figs are just so sweet. I needed help and that is why I went to the fig forum and after Dan advice me, I didn't take out the settlers tree and I am so glad that I didn't. It is my workhorse now, produces the earliest figs and is all purpose, fresh and cooking.

When I got the advice on the vendors, I contacted the two and since this happened in 09, I don't remember who of the two I bought it. I bought decent size VDB and Negronne. The Negronne soon started to outgrow the other one and just the day before a freeze I planted (bad idea) I kept the VDB in a pot but the expensive large pot was not draining and when I took it out, decided to plant it in the ground. It is still dwarf and the figs are wonderful! only for fresh eating because I don't have that many. And if the vendor sent me something else, I would thank him for that because this is the one that I want.
I also got free cuttings one year from UCDavis, they sent me a lot! but that time I was so busy that I was not taking proper care of the cuttings and only few survived, one of them I still have it and is the Col De Dame, I had the chance to try this one when it was in a pot and I like it. We will see how they will do since it is a late fig... And that is the story.

Silvia


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RE: Figs

Thanks Silvia,

Well the experts don't know what your fig is either:) The leaf shape is too generic on yours to go by and while one person thought it was a BT another, the owner of figs4fun said he did not think it was a BT......so??? Most times BT are pretty dry inside and that is why a lot of people don't like them but there are a bunch of types of BT so who knows.

If you ever change your mind and want VDB let me know.


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RE: Figs

  • Posted by whgille Oakland FL Zone 9B (My Page) on
    Fri, Aug 9, 13 at 10:12

Thank you Bamboo, I will take you up on the offer if I ever loose any of the figs that I got now. For now there is no more room at the inn,lol. I found out that even dwarf figs in a pot are a bad idea, need room to grow.
Sometimes it is hard to recreate flavors that we grew up with, like my early years figs, I don't know the varieties neither do I have a rich volcanic soil now and perfect weather for a perfect fig, but I am happy with what I have for now. When I went to Italy, perfect place to grow figs, I brought fig jams with me and after making my own fig jams with the settlers fig that I have, every one that tried like mine better.:)
Sal sent me an email one time and was nice enough to offer me rare fig cuttings including some from his family in Italy, I should of say yes, I hope that some day he will contact me again...

Silvia


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RE: Figs

Silvia,

One of the nice things about figs is the variety.....you have figs that taste like fig newtons..some that taste just sweet.some that taste like berries.some that taste and have the consistency of berry jam and others that taste like honey. Throw in how easy they are to grow and the speed they grow and they are just a joy.

Far as running out of room I know the feeling. I probably have a 1000 fruiting plants now and very quickly I am running out of room....that is ok as it will lessen my work load:)


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RE: Figs

Bamboo - Is the VDB fig a mid-season fig? When does the Black Madeira ripen?

All of the varieties of figs that I have ripen at the same time. You gave me the "bug". I'm wanting more fig varieties but I want to extend out the season with terrific varieties. Can you help with recommendations?

Silvia - Interesting reading in those threads. And, you are very lucky that you are pleased with the varieties that you were able to get. I have a LSU Purple that is about 8 years old and the figs still taste like cardboard. I've given up on it and it's going to get pulled out.

Christine


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RE: Figs

Christine,

Don't take it as gospel but..... yes I believe VDB is mid season. To complicate things you have the Breba crop and main crop so you have to say if it is an early main crop or early Breba but some figs that are midseason or late may have earlier Brebas or some have no Brebas. if you followed that rambling thought you deserve a prize:)

Black Madeira is later and that is good as it may ripen mostly after our rains have started to taper off. You also have really late figs like Pasqualle that ripen about Christmas. You also have figs like Salem Dark and Pan E Vino White that are quite late. Some of the Col De Dame types are late as well...I think Col De Dame Gris is the latest but I could be wrong.

I am not happy to hear your LSU purple tastes like cardboard.....I gave my LSU Purple a good spot in the yard. I know it is said it takes it a few years to develop it's flavor but you have had yours a long time.

Have you joined at Figs4fun yet?


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RE: Figs

Silvia, thank you so much for the link to the fig information! (Yeah, I do love info. I can read and read about plants.) It sounds like I can get figs from my neighbor (maybe) and then dehydrate them and have them for a long time. Thanks for passing on that link!

Carol


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RE: Figs

  • Posted by whgille Oakland FL Zone 9B (My Page) on
    Sun, Aug 11, 13 at 8:29

Bamboo, I know a good fig when I taste one, years and years of trying the best figs, I am hard to please.
I have the perfect set up now, the settlers fig (that I still don't know the variety) because is early, produces heavily and can be used in cooking.
The VDB (which was sold to me as such) and if not I just love the rich and complex flavor, very big, moist and sweet, a winner! for me, at this point I don't care the name the only thing that I care is to have the best flavor in a fig, I will not cook this, I will eat them fresh, in appetizers and sharing with friends.
The Col De Dame only gave me a couple of figs last year, like the flavor but when we have frosts I think there is no figs, that is the reason that I killed the Negronne, it was recently planted and then the cold. We need a very long season for late figs, like in California but then again I am not an expert, I can be wrong. I have the testing late fig now, we shall see.
And I have seen the Japanese projects one time of figs growing flat on the floor, like an espalier, if it works it will be great, we also have to deal with bugs, rain, humidity. Please keep us posted of your progress. And have you sampled any of the figs that you planted already?

Christine, remember the fruit farm? one year I went to pick figs, never again! all the varieties were tasteless, I was so disappointed! You probably know this but when you grow figs, you have to be very diligent and pick figs, otherwise they fall or bugs, or they split.

Carol, Information is the name of the game, I pick my favorite posters with brains from all the forums and I learn from them, like I said they know things that I don't. And for me you are like the cheerleader in this forum, I like the way that you love plants and have an upbeat energy!
One of the fig cakes went yesterday to an Italian party, they love it! and they know their figs.:)

Silvia


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RE: Figs

Silvia,

Like I said if you are happy with your figs that is all that matters. Celeste and BT are popular for a reason. There are good strains and bad strains of each type. Figs have a tendency to mutate and it causes variations or so that is the theory.

The Japanese grow the stepovers because they are easy to protect from the cold and because that technique produces superior fruit. I just did it because I think it looks cool:) I put in rebar support for the plants to grow on all the way around the pool cage. Right now they are just growing up and this fall will lay them down and secure them to the support that is about 10" off the ground. They were planted in March and are now 6 feet tall but just two stems per plant, one stem will be bent each direction. Quite a few of them have figs on them as well.

From my plants in my ground I have only sampled 4 varieties. From others plants another half dozen varieties so I am excited to try all the new varieties. Some of the very highend figs from France won't fruit till next year. Of the plants put in the ground in March about 10 will ripen fruit this fall. While it will give me some indication it takes some figs years to develop their full potential. I have also been pushing the plants to grow and that will affect the quality this year but that was a trade off I was willing to make.


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RE: Figs

  • Posted by whgille Oakland FL Zone 9B (My Page) on
    Sun, Aug 11, 13 at 11:31

Bamboo

You are very positive and hard working, I wish you a lot of tasty figs in the future, you sure are doing the best that you can learning and applying.

Here is the update this morning on my trees, the settler's tree have slowed down on the ripening figs, it is still a lot of green ones on the tree.
The one that the vendor sold me as VDB is ripening great figs, I cannot believe the flavor and for such a small tree is loaded! I have this tree since 09 and kept the dwarf tendency, in ground produces bigger figs.
Col De Dame is growing rapidly, it is going to be big, I don't like that and will have to trim it. No sign of figs yet, I might have to switch to another variety if it does not do well this year.

This morning VDB, I am cloning this one, whatever it is.:)

 photo August2013_012_zps58ff8958.jpg

 photo August2013_013_zpsb6135203.jpg

 photo August2013_014_zps4f5c5ea3.jpg

Silvia


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RE: Figs

Silvia,

It sure looks good:) That tree is quite small for that age but it was in a smaller pot it looks like, 3 gallon? Was it very root bound when you put it in the ground? If you ever prune it and want to share I would love to try a cutting.

It would have been nice if they could have id'ed the fig but sometimes they just can't to a certainty.

Here is one of my VDB that is in the stepovers. You can see the leaves are very different from the plant you bought as a VDB and the green immature figs have a very red eye.

 photo 20130811_121005_zps56670c2f.jpg

 photo 20130811_121027_zpsc5c143c7.jpg


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RE: Figs

  • Posted by whgille Oakland FL Zone 9B (My Page) on
    Sun, Aug 11, 13 at 15:45

Bamboo, I put it in one of the biggest pots that I could find at Lukas, but the problem was that it didn't have a flat bottom and was not draining properly. When I took it out the roots were all the way in the soil, that is why I am saying even a dwarf fig tree needs room to grow and a pot it is not the best environment. When I got the tree it was probably in a gallon but the Negronne which was smaller in size grew so fast! it did look like a strong variety.
They said that the best time to take cuttings are in the fall, I will keep a cutting for you and I am going to grow at least one more for myself being small size I can find a space some place. When there is a will, there is a way.:)
Your VDB looks very healthy and soon you will be tasting some good figs.

Here is the guilty pot where I had the fig

 photo August2013_015_zpsd47e46cb.jpg

Silvia


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RE: Figs

Sylvia,

Pots work great for figs. The folks up north that want to grow the more tender figs grow them in pig pots then take them inside a garage or outbuilding for the winter to protect them from the frigid temps and winds. Some of the people grow several hundred figs all in pots. I know every 3 years they take them out of the pots and root prune them then back in it goes. Think about how much work that must be...that is dedication,


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RE: Figs

  • Posted by whgille Oakland FL Zone 9B (My Page) on
    Mon, Aug 12, 13 at 15:09

Bamboo, the growers up north are not busy in the winter time:) we are busy here all year round. And trimming the roots works well, I heard Al T doing the elaborate ritual, that is dedication for sure.
I got the dwarf fig in about a gallon pot, after that I grew it for a couple of years in a huge clay pot and then the pot that didn't drain, I was surprised to see all the roots coming out of the pot. Col De Dame was just a cutting and now is big, I kept it in a big clay pot for about 2 years. No sign of figs yet, last year only a couple of figs got the chance to ripen before the cold...

 photo August2013_018_zpsc522ea24.jpg

Silvia


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RE: Figs

Silvia,

They just ignore them over the winter, no upkeep is needed. My point was that figs grow great in pots if they get the right soil mix and care.

I am quite surprised your Col De Dame has not produced figs yet this year, it looks pretty happy.


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RE: Figs

Silvia - I forgot to answer you. Yes, I especially remember the huge Texas Everbearing fig tree from the fruit farm. I'm surprised to hear that the figs didn't taste good. It seems that they would have removed it and replaced it. But, unlike us who know what a delicious fig tastes like, others may think that it is good.

It's true that when it's fig harvesting time it's important to pick them at least every other day. I get such a huge harvest that I don't mind if a bunch rot on the tree. The bees just love them that way. I like to share with my "girls". Makes my honey tastier.

My problem is that I have mostly the same variety. Thanks to Bamboo's encouragement, I'm going to expand my selections this fall. I'll let you know if I get any extra special ones.

Christine


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RE: Figs

Hi, I'm interested in trying to plant a fig tree here in Ft. Worth, TX. Where would be a good place to get a plant or some cuttings to start?


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RE: Figs

dgsman,

Try eBay.... search 'fig trees'
A lot of different ones will show up... potted, cuttings, & seeds.


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RE: Figs

Silvia, that is a gorgeous planter (pot)! Even though they are heavy, there is something about a nice big, glazed, clay pot that I really love. I hope you can refill it with another pretty plant.

Carol


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RE: Figs

  • Posted by whgille Oakland FL Zone 9B (My Page) on
    Sat, Sep 7, 13 at 14:50

Thank you Carol, I really like the pot when I first saw it and they were almost half the price as other pots in the same nursery, even empty it looks like a decoration. I notice that the more expensive were the cobalt blue color, it is probably popular. Mine is a greenish color. I will let you know its future use...:)

Silvia


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RE: Figs

  • Posted by saldut 9-10 st pete, fl (My Page) on
    Mon, Sep 9, 13 at 15:37

Somebody here was asking where to get figs in the St Pete area, well, I just got 2 at Willow Tree Nursery on 49th St. North....a black mission and another, name forgot.. they were good size and $20. each, they also had Loquat trees, tall, for $50. It's a neat place to go as well, very clean and lots to see, even a chicken-coop w/chickens! LOL, sally


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