Fig Seedlings- Controlled Cross


Hopefully I can simplify what happens with fig breeding and that will clear it up.

So, common figs are persistent because they carry the gene “P”, it is the same for persistent caprifigs, they have the gene “P” in their DNA. It is a dominant gene, so figs need only one “P” in order to be persistent, in fact, no fig can have “PP” because when the seed embryo has a P it kills the seed, only the pollen parent can pass the gene “P” to the offspring. The other gene is just called “+”, Smyrnas have 2 of them: “++” and common figs/persistent caprifigs have one along with their gene for persistence: “P+”. So to get common/persistent females you must use a persistent male “P+” as their father, if not and you use a caprifig that does not have the gene it means none of the seedlings will either, they will all be “++”. Smyrna figs/caprifigs are called homozygous because they have 2 of the same genes that result in dropping figs that are not pollinated “++”, Common figs/persistent caprifigs are heterozygous because they have one gene for persistence (that is dominant) and one for dropping fruit “P+”, homo means the same; hetero means different, zygous just means it has to do with genetics

Herman2 was talking about how Condit initially worked with Gillette as the pollen parent but switched to a different one because there is very little pollen in Gillette’s stamens.


Thank you! I get very confused when experts explain things in a way, like only experts are going to pay any attention.


I gave the tree the name Gillette (MWamsley), because someone with the user name found a tree on the side of the road at an out of business nursery, no one told him what it is because there was no one to ask, he took lots of cuttings off the tree because he knew that they’d destroy the tree soon and he was right, he thought it was a Gillette, his username was MWamsley on F4F.

He took photos of the tree with fruit on it, before collecting the cuttings, the cuttings all came directly from the same tree, and he made no profit. He did not even keep anything from the tree for his self. The odd thing is that the figs looked large in those photos, yet as far as I know everyone has gotten only small figs from their trees. I do not recall how large the leaves looked in the photos he took, I will have to look again.

As far as our Croisic, when it fruits I will keep you updated on the fruit. So you are not seeing any stamens in the figs that your Gillette is producing? If so I am wondering if with age maybe that could change? Figs on fig trees in general do get better as the tree ages for a while.


A clarification, I have not tried pollinating any of our fig trees and we have no fig wasp, just the same I have seen stamens in the figs of our Gillette (MWamsley) (breba crop, only crop we have seen from it). I do not recall if I had seen them from the first time of cropping or not, I have done a lot of research in to Croisic which also got me curious about pollinating them and the science behind that. My interest in Gillette started because of a false claim that a fig tree in Malta was the same thing as Gillette, not even close to the same as Gillette.


That is probably just an age/size issue, older trees produce larger figs.

I don’t have it anymore, it was labeled Vashon from Jon. It did have stamens, but no detectable pollen on the anthers. I hope you try pollinating other figs with it, it may be that I missed the ripe point of the stamens or made some other mistake.


I am going to try and contact the person who provided the Gillette (MWamsley) cuttings because I remember a few of the facts wrong, he stated that the figs were a large size, the photos he shared the figs looked medium sized and far from ripe unless he shared some other photos that are gone now, also I’d like to see if he ever took photos of the tree in which the trees fruit were more developed, even in December of that year he was still showing the June photos.

I am going to one day try looking for pollen on all the edible caprifigs that I have access too, growing myself or not. I am recalling that before I took any real interest in fig tree pollination I had opened an aborted fig from our Gillette (MWamsley) and it had something in it that looked a little powdery. Yet it was a long time ago and I did not think much about the powdery look then, nor do I recall how early it aborted.

Back to your Gillette, how sweet were the figs from that Gillette tree? They are supposed to be sweet like candy, roasted marshmallows, when they are fully ripe, to give you an idea.


To be honest I didn’t care for it and didn’t even try most of the figs it ripened.


Well Croisic figs have to be very ripe to be worth eating fresh, more ripe than a lot of people would dare pick the fruit. It’s not one of those figs you can pick a day or two early unless you are making fig jam with them.

in France, in the Areas it grows, it’s the favorite fig of the kids there, because it’s just like eating candy, very sweet, people who do not know what roasted marshmallows are like sometimes compare the figs to coconut.