Figs 2018


Pollinated figs have fertile seeds which makes the seeds more tasty and more crunchy. Without pollination the seeds abort, are just tiny seed shells and nothing else. So they are tasteless and way less noticeable. The first crop of an edible caprifig (persistent caprifig) the figs self pollinate and so they have larger fertile seeds. Some varieties of common figs can have very poorly self pollinated figs, so poorly that not many fertile seeds are found in such a figs. A great example of a common fig that does that regularly is the variety Deanna.


Bari, Sal El, Sal Corleone, Hardy Chicago, Dark Greek, Gino black, Pav. Dark, Nero 600M , Takoma Violet, and Valle Negra are awesome.



What is the biggest , best tasting and most productive? If I am growing it in a container I want maximum return. My Chicago hardy are good but small. I think I will put one in ground this fall and try for something that will produce more figs


I would say Takoma Violet or Sal Corleone. They both are very productive, good size, and sweet tasting.


Thanks tony, I noted that


Barnisotte should fit the bill nicely. Longue d’Aout also but it wants to be a really large tree so tougher to keep happy in a container. Or LSU Tiger is only a little bigger than HC but very good I think.


I have a couple of Chicago hardy turning color finally, how much longer until they are dead ripe?


Wait until they are purple like those in my photo and let the fruits drupe a bit before harvest. They will be real good at that stage.


A ripe fig is droopy and wrinkled. Perhaps even torn. PM me if you’d like my more salty description of ripe figs.


Thanks for the info, but how long will it be , a couple days or a couple of weeks?


They are more purple today, so it looks like it will be days


They are more purple today, so it looks like it will be days


Few more days. Soft to touch and droopy.


On that note, let me give my single fig update :slight_smile:

This was the first fig I’ve ripened so far this year. It is in a 5-7 gal pot where the tag came off. By process of elimination, I believe that it is a Bryant Park. That would also make sense as it had 1-2 very nice fruit last August before an animal found it and finished it off.

This one is the biggest fig I’ve ever seen. Since it was so large, I was worried it might be bland. But we’ve had several days of hot sunny weather and it was flavorful and sweet. I’m not sure if I should be deficit irrigating them, but I’ve been watering every one to two days (and if it rains a lot, I skip a day).

I split it with my daughter and we both wanted more. The taste stayed with me for a few minutes. It’s hard to get a brix reading with figs, but I smeared a bit on and was able to just make out 21 brix.

I’m not sure how long after it starts drooping to wait. For the above fig it was about a day, as I’d hate to lose it. I could probably have waited a 2nd day, as only the bottom 2/3 of it was very good, while the top part near the stem could have used a bit more ripening.

I’m not counting the only other fig I had earlier this summer, as it was one I brought out of the garage and into the living room back in March. It only give me one fig, so that didn’t work as well as I’d hoped. The above plant has plenty of additional figs, as well as a bean plant (previously sown in the soil used when up-potting last year?).

None of my in-ground figs are even close to ripe. All died back to the ground, even though I mulched them with pine needles.

Macool- earliest fruit set

Others with fruit-set:
Adriatic JH
Takoma Violet
LSU Purple
St Jean de Gris (just starting- very unlikely to ripen)

No fruit at all:
Alma (2 very mature plants- 2015)
Nero 600M


It depends on a number of things, temperature, sun exposure, fig size, variety… And then there are different ideas of what is considered ripe, my standard is tree ripe which is when no sap bleeds from the stem when picked.

Once there is no sap flow the only ripening that happens is from enzymes breaking down the fruit, like in a cantaloupe. When figs dry naturally on the tree they ferment a little bit, which is why dried figs taste different from fresh. Some people prefer that flavor, I like to dehydrate at tree ripe or slightly overripe to keep as much fresh flavor as I can.

p.s. you can poke the stem with a pin or knife tip and wait to see if there is still sap flowing, softness and color will vary so that has helped me learn to pick them just how I like.


The weather has been great here. Picked and dehydrated some nice ones today.


Here are my Takoma Violet that I picked yesterday. They are the real deal, very sweet, jammy, and great tasting. I will have to propagate more of this guy next Spring. A must have potted fig.



If you are getting worried about the others having enough time to ripen, you can thin the smallest fruits and let the fig tree concentrate on the rest. Some is better than none!


Good tip, I pricked the stem of the darkest today and just the slightest hint of latex appeared. I think it will just be a day or two now.


The ants and birds have been intolerable this year. The only thing that has been guaranteeing any figs in my yard are the organza bags. Here is my modest harvest this morning. Clockwise from the largest one are longue d’aout, moscatel preto, 2 ronde de bordeaux, a group of malta black.