Anyone grown a fig?

Gardening/Walking/Nature trails & wildlife. Share your experiences here...

Moderator: Moderators

Post Reply
martyn94
Rank 5
Rank 5
Posts: 2086
Joined: Sun 14 Apr 2013 14:37

Anyone grown a fig?

Post by martyn94 »

I have a space 2-3m wide where I need to plant something which will look nice, produce something edible, and not take much tlc.

My neighbour has a glorious fig tree, but it is vastly too big, and I don't have 50 years to wait. I know you can get them to grow smaller: the gardening books always say that you should restrict the roots (eg by lining your hole with paving slabs.

But I'm concerned that it might not get enough water under our conditions if you did that. And I'm not keen to dig a damn big hole, and buy the slabs, without some comfort that it would work. So does anyone have any useful experience?

Also on when to plant? The rule (at least in Normandy) is to plant at "St Martin" (ie 11 November). But I don't know if that goes for figs, or down here.
User avatar
russell
Rank 5
Rank 5
Posts: 1025
Joined: Fri 21 May 2010 16:03
Contact:

Post by russell »

We have two fig trees, one about 12 years old and one about 10. You don't need to wait 50 years. Ours fruited after a couple of years.

You will definitely need to restrict its growth. For a space that small I would suggest growing one in a large terracotta pot which you could bury in the ground. Severe annual pruning can keep them in check. You could also train it to grow against a wall.

Don't worry too much about water, they need very little.

Russell.
Allan
Rank 5
Rank 5
Posts: 1383
Joined: Tue 01 Sep 2009 21:21
Contact:

Re: Anyone grown a fig?

Post by Allan »

martyn94 wrote:I have a space 2-3m wide where I need to plant something which will look nice, produce something edible, and not take much tlc.

My neighbour has a glorious fig tree, but it is vastly too big, and I don't have 50 years to wait. I know you can get them to grow smaller: the gardening books always say that you should restrict the roots (eg by lining your hole with paving slabs.

But I'm concerned that it might not get enough water under our conditions if you did that. And I'm not keen to dig a damn big hole, and buy the slabs, without some comfort that it would work. So does anyone have any useful experience?

Also on when to plant? The rule (at least in Normandy) is to plant at "St Martin" (ie 11 November). But I don't know if that goes for figs, or down here.
We have several fig trees and only one of them would count as a very large tree, the others would all fit in your space and we have never constricted any with paving slabs, they are all at least 12 years old and don't seem bothered about having lots of water.

There are different varieties of figs but the tastier ones are the dark purple/black ones, we get fruit twice a year from them, normally June and September.

You are welcome to come and see them and the conditions in which they grow.
Our gardener who is local always plants fruit trees in November
martyn94
Rank 5
Rank 5
Posts: 2086
Joined: Sun 14 Apr 2013 14:37

Post by martyn94 »

Many thanks for all the help. Though I don't know where it leaves me. I was wrong about the date to plant: it's Ste Catherine (25 November in the western church). To be honest, I don't think the date is that critical, but it makes a good mnemonic (racines/Catherine).

More to the point, do mulberries work down here?
Webdoc
Rank 5
Rank 5
Posts: 201
Joined: Tue 02 May 2006 19:09
Contact:

Post by Webdoc »

You MUST restrict the root space if you want a small tree with lots of fruit.

There are 2 fig trees side by side near my house only a few yards apart. The one in restricted root space grows slowly and is covered in fruit. The one growing in open ground grows very vigorously and has no fruit at all.

Mulberry trees are common in 66 - often planted to provide shade in municipal car parks.
Post Reply