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 Article: Propagating Figs 
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Joined: Mon Aug 02, 2004 2:49 pm
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Mon Jan 03, 2005 11:31 am
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Joined: Tue Apr 27, 2004 1:58 pm
Posts: 228
Location: Oregon
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I think I am going to have to try this. I have a fig tree, but it is in the wrong place, and to big to move.


Mon Jan 03, 2005 11:37 am
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Thanks for nice to-the-point info! I usually end up in scholarly big-word articles that tell everything except what I needed to know! It's January in western North Carolina and my indoor fig is putting on fruit, so I'm encouraged to try for more. Bob, Hendersonville NC, Zone 6.


Mon Jan 24, 2005 9:23 am
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You can use an upside down pickle jar or a one gallon glass jar for a mini greenhouse. Use Flourescent lighting to provide the needed lumens, a shop light works great. Even when cuttings are incubated in the low 60's, they still root within a month, even in January!


Mon Jan 31, 2005 12:08 am

Joined: Thu Jan 27, 2005 11:27 pm
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Location: Yamhill County, Oregon
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I encourage everyone to give a fig plant a try! I say "plant," as opposed to "tree," because I'd suggest allowing them to sprout multiple "limbs" from the ground as opposed to pruning them to a single trunked tree. With a deep freeze I lost a fig "tree," but my fig "clumps" have survived with far less damage, usually only the outside "ground-limbs" & tips die-back.
My suggestion for propagation: find a friends fig tree with fruit you love (or the HOS Scion Exchange); help them prune it; take up to 2 foot freshly pruned "ends" and slip 2 thirds of each piece at an ANGLE into the soil of your garden or flower bed that will receive summer sun. A past fig grower (Helen Webb of Yamhill) taught me that laying them in, almost sideways, gave warmth nearer to their forming roots; it's worked great.
All you have to do is wait... water, and have enough friends / family to give the eventual fig plants away to. They will form a wonderful root system, and the emerging growth will head up, toward the sun, giving you a fine fig "tree." You may safely transplant them the following year, or carefully do the same as soon as you dare.
I gave away the last of 10 figs this fall, and will start a new "batch" and variety any day now! Become a "Johnny Fig-tree!"

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Sun Feb 06, 2005 1:18 pm
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The variety of fig tree we have dies (but always comes back) if we try to prune it. Have tried pruning it spring, summer, winter. Is it timing, weather or variety? Beth, Oregon


Mon Mar 14, 2005 12:03 pm

Joined: Thu Jan 27, 2005 11:27 pm
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Location: Yamhill County, Oregon
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Beth, I see you're in "Oregon," I'll assume (like most of us) the Willamette Valley. There are some very tender "Italian fig" varieties, so sensitive to cold they can barely stand the lightest of frosts. Perhaps that's a variety you have; do you know the variety? In severe winters I've known young figs to die back to ground level, but not on a regular basses.
As far as pruning... if it's a well established plant, 10 years "there" or better, and has the vigor to re-grow every year from ground level, I wouldn't prune it at all. It needs to establish "limbs," or trunks large enough to withstand the freezes of your area. Let them thicken-up for 3 or so years, pruning only for structure. To establish figs in my yard, I'll cage them in and bury them in raked leaves for the winter - mice love this protection too so don't leave it on too late into spring. After a year or two, they're husky enough to take harsh weather with only slight tip die-back.
If you've had this fig for over 5 years and it consistently dies back - I'd replace it. Desert King is the best fig for Oregon, I have 5 of them! Vigorous; hardy; and prolific; you'd most likely have fruit within 2 or 3 years. If they die back... consistently - you may be too cold & windy for figs. A south exposure against a building may be your only chance. One of our favorite fruits; they're worth the extra effort :) .

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Sun Mar 27, 2005 9:07 am
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Joined: Wed Sep 08, 2004 8:14 pm
Posts: 197
Location: Aurora, Oregon
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An established fig will usually have several side shoots at the base that are in contact with the soil, and much of the time they will have roots in the area where they touch the soil. Cut them loose when they are dormant and plant them in a new location.

You can make your figs hardier by cutting back the water by mid July in Oregon. I have some established Desert King figs that are NEVER watered and they have frozen back only one time in over 25 years. Growing them in dry conditions makes them harden off much better.
-Lon Rombough


Sun Aug 28, 2005 9:21 am
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