Figs don't grow and sell all year long like some other fruits. Instead, they have a specific season. Many of them have two seasons because they produce two crops.
At different times of the year, you can also get different kinds. The fresh fruits don't keep well, and if they are handled roughly while shipped, they will break.
Where Do Figs Grow?
The fig comes from the Mediterranean and does well in mild, semi-arid climates. Most commercial figs come from Turkey, Morocco, Iran, and Egypt, but they are also grown in Algeria, Chile, New Zealand, and Spain. Most figs are grown in the US in states like California and Texas, but they can also be grown in Utah and Oregon.
What Usda Zones Do Figs Do Best in?
Figs can't usually handle temperatures below 20°F (°C). The tree might still live, but it's unlikely to bear fruit. Figs can be grown anywhere between USDA Zones 5 and 9. However, varieties vary in terms of hardiness.
Gardeners in warmer areas will have more success, but even in colder areas, figs can often be grown in pots that can be brought inside for the winter.
How Do I Make Figs Grow?
Fig trees don't care how they grow as long as they are in the right climate. They like soil with a pH between 6.0 and 6.5, but they can also grow in soil that is more acidic.
They grow well in normal garden soil and don't need much fertilizer; compost or organic mulch is usually enough. They need deep watering about once a week, and you shouldn't give them too much water to keep the roots from rotting.
Can Figs Be Grown in Pots?
If you choose the right kind, you can grow figs in pots. To give the roots enough room, the pot should be about the size of a half barrel. Choose a smaller tree or prune the one you have to keep under six feet.
Make sure the pot has enough holes for water to drain, and use soil that drains well. Put the pot where it will get bright, indirect light instead of full sun.
How Many Kinds of Figs Are There?
Some of the most common types of figs sold commercially are:
- Black Mission – purple to black skin mid-May to November.
- Calimyrna – pale yellow skin; July to September.
- Kadota – creamy amber skin; mid-June to October.
- Brown Turkey – light purple to black skin; mid-May to December.
- Sierra – light yellow to cream skin; June to November.
- Tiger – light yellow with a dark green stripe, the interior is bright purple-red; mid-July to November.
Do Figs Have Two Seasons?
Most figs have two crops a year. The first crop is short and is called the “breba crop.” It usually happens in late spring or early summer. Older wood is used to make the breba crop. Not all kinds of figs from the breba crop can be eaten.
The main crop is ready to be picked in late summer and fall. The new wood is used to grow this crop. Commercial growers trim the trees so that they grow the newest wood.
Which Kind of Fig Lasts the Longest?
Conditions for growing and weather can change when figs are in season, but some varieties tend to produce for a longer time. Since home gardeners are not tied to what the market wants, they may be able to pick for a longer time.
Most of the time, Brown Turkey and Black Mission have the longest season. Sierra, Kadota, and Calimyrna come next. Tiger's season is the shortest.
When Are Imported Figs Available?
Figs that are brought into the US may come from countries that have the same season as the US or from countries that are south of the equator.
Figs from Turkey, Spain, Algeria, and Morocco will have seasons that are about the same as those in the United States, from late spring to early summer to fall. After December, most fresh figs in stores come from Chile, New Zealand, and other countries south of the equator.
How Can I Make the Fig Season Last Longer?
Growing different kinds is the best way to make the season last longer. For example, if you grow Brown Turkey and Mission, you can have fresh figs from the middle of May until the end of December.
Figs can produce fruit almost all year long in some climates, but those climates are usually in tropical areas. Fig trees also tend to have a little bit longer season and bear more as they get older.
How Can I Accelerate the Ripening of Figs?
Under optimal conditions, figs can ripen within two months. Nonetheless, any type of stress retards ripening. Ensure that your tree has sufficient water, as drought delays fruit ripening.
Protect the tree from stress-causing insects and diseases. If you have extremely poor soil, amend it before planting or use a balanced organic fertilizer with a composition of 8-8-8 or 10-10-10.
How Do I Safeguard Ripening Figs?
As the figs ripen, birds pose the greatest threat, although insects such as figeater beetles are also attracted to the sweet fruit. The most effective way to combat marauding birds is with nets.
To make it easier to spread nets, prune the tree to between six and eight feet in height. Hand-picking and maintaining a clean garden are the most effective methods for controlling beetles.
What’s the Best Way to Store Fresh Figs?
Figs require ripening on the tree and are extremely perishable. When the fig is fully colored, plump, and slightly soft but not mushy, it is ready to be harvested. Several days of storage at room temperature in a single layer.
Additionally, they can be refrigerated for two to three days. Although they will become softer when stored, they will not ripen further; therefore, do not harvest them when they are unripe.
Can Fresh Figs Be Canned?
Canning is an effective method of preserving fresh figs. You may use a light or heavy syrup, stevia (rather than aspartame), or even water.
Lemon juice or citric acid is used to preserve color and increase acidity. The fruit is typically canned whole in pint or quart jars without peeling. Follow tested recipes and directions precisely.
Can Fresh Figs Be Dried?
Typically, in climates where figs are grown for commercial purposes, they are allowed to begin drying on the tree. You can sun-dry your own figs by washing, halving, and placing them on well-ventilated racks in direct sunlight.
Use netting to protect against insects. Turn daily. You can also dry in a dehydrator or a low-temperature oven. Place in airtight containers and keep in a cool, dry location.
Can I Freeze Fresh Figs?
Freezing is likely the most straightforward method for preserving fresh figs. Wash and arrange whole ripe figs on a platter—package frozen items in plastic bags.
Typically, the fruit will last approximately three months. Additionally, the fruit can be sliced, quartered, and frozen in sugar syrup. Frozen figs in syrup have a longer shelf life than whole figs.