Brisbane Local Food

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Hooray! First ripe Figs for this season. Just picked this morning.

It's a White Adriatic - turns out to be green-skinned ;-) and with a whole 12 fruit on, the best it's done so far.

Last year I made the mistake of putting some 'tree paste' on it - bought that 'tree paste' from Green Harvest. Said to be similar to the Biodynamic tree paste. It's not. All it did was make the plants grow the biggest and best they've ever been but no fruit to speak of.

Early this year I bought some genuine Biodnyamic Tree Paste from a farm around Bellingen. A whole 5kgs which I have used as general fertiliser as well as tree paste. Anyway, it did the trick and we have fruit this year.

The fruit is small when green - maybe 1-2 inches in diameter. Overnight they swell up to at least twice the size and become soft. That's when you pick them. Now they've started to ripen I imagine that I'll pick one/some each day.

The plant grows in a 200 litre wicking bin (the like of which I cannot now buy :-() and is heavily pruned each year.

Doesn't look all that ripe, does it? We're used to seeing Figs much darker than that inside. It did have a fine flavour and was as sweet as … Looks are not everything! Not big but quality over quantity ;-)

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Comment by Lissa on January 25, 2014 at 5:02

It's a good little article that one Elaine. When I read it the first time I gave my fig a good prune and it responded very well. I'd forgotten it said "hard prune every year and cut back to a stump every five".

Comment by Elaine de Saxe on January 24, 2014 at 16:37

Craig, see what you can make of this blog post on fig pruning - it reads as though new wood is where the fruit is. Given the size of the trees, it must be new wood.

There are some Fig varieties which give a second crop, perhaps they grow on older wood … guesswork.

Comment by Craig Hogan on January 24, 2014 at 7:28
My tree which has been a prolific fruiter in the past is showing signs that it needs a prune. I have heard that figs don't grow on old wood. Not true in my case though I've only picked dozens so far this year compared to hundreds last year.
Comment by Elaine de Saxe on January 24, 2014 at 7:11

Prune when dormant around June. Check this blog post on BLF although I didn't find it as clearcut as I'd hoped. Not sure what he means by 'shoots'. My Fig is growing in a large pot and I'm not convinced that I water it enough which may explain the leaf drop and relatively few fruit.

Comment by Lissa on January 24, 2014 at 5:21

My figs are both producing now. One is the common dark coloured one we all grow and the other a Preston Prolific - the latter rather watery and disappointing, the former rich and sweet.

Comment by Ania on January 23, 2014 at 23:58

Lissa, Elaine,  I think I found the reason for my leaf curl, there were beetle-ish insects!! Didn't notice til I accidentally watered the foliage! Used homemade garlic/chili spray, and tried to squash a few about 2 weeks ago. Seems they are gone and the new leaves are flat, even some of the old ones are unfurling. Looks like there are about 15 black genoa fig buds on the way.. odd timing, post first harvest, Interesting.

Elaine, please, when do you prune your figs? The green n pink variety has finished producing and losing its leaves, when do you think I should prune it?

Comment by Lissa on December 30, 2013 at 5:36

My garden planted fig is also leaf curling at the edges Ania. I do think it's water related as the plant itself is quite healthy and there's no sign of any pests. The one in the pot gets daily weed tea/water and is doing fine.

Comment by Elaine de Saxe on December 29, 2013 at 21:55

The pots are between 200 and 300 litre bins I bought at Bunnings. They are not available any more :-( It's possible the tree could need more water, trees really do need support when they have fruit to mature. I notice that there are always some leaves dying and falling off even though the tree is in the midst of fruiting. But that is not curling … and your guess is as good as mine. My Fig has slightly curled leaves too and tonight's piddling storm won't help it much. When the Fig gets towards dormancy, a lot of leaf-chewing insects move in and skeletonise the leaves. I just pull off the leaves and dump them in the rubbish.

Comment by Ania on December 29, 2013 at 19:40
Gorgeous fig tree! I've been eating one a day for a while now but my supplies are ending!! The black genoa is hinting at many babies.. But what does it mean when the leaves are curling at the edges? More water needed?
Comment by Andrew Cumberland on December 28, 2013 at 22:35

ROFL.  You know I don't like to give away too much of my blue!

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