Propagating Figs

Figs are easy to propagate as they root very easily. There are several ways to propagate them. The most common method is to root leafless cuttings taken in the late winter or early spring. Here’s how to do it:

1. Take cuttings which are 3 to 6 inches long and pencil to finger thick. The best cuttings will have some of last year’s wood on them.

2. If the weather is still unsettled and likely to frost, store the cuttings in a sealed zip lock in the produce bin in your refrigerator. If the weather is warm and likely to stay warm, pot your cuttings in sand or a good-quality potting mix.

3. Using 4-inch deep plastic pots, pack a half sheet of newspaper tightly into the bottom of the pot. Put a little mix in the bottom, stand 1 to 4 cuttings upright in each pot, and fill with the mix.

4. Water the pots thoroughly and stand them in a very bright, BUT NOT SUNNY place. It should be warm 70+ F. If you can’t keep the air temperature above 70F. Cover the pot with an empty 2 or 3 liter soft drink bottle with the bottom cut out (leave the lid on).

5. Don’t water the cuttings again until they are very dry. Test for dryness occasionally by lifting the pot. If the pot is very light, water it by setting it in a pan of water and letting it soak. When you see vigorous growth, it is time to harden off the new plants. Remove the bottle cap and see how they do. If okay, remove the bottle after a few days. Keep and eye on them and reinstall the bottle if the plants wilt.

6. After a few days it will be time to pot up the new plants. Don’t do this just because you see leaves growing. Sometimes there sill be 4 or 5 leaves and few, if any, roots. Wait until you see vigorous growth. Apply fertilizer.

Pome News, Fall 2000