Northern growers, how did your figs and poms fare?


I've gotten some some takes on all the varieties from Scott (7 of 8 grafts) and only Tam Kam from my first round of grafts. Those are Anne raspberries which have grown up around it. I should probably cut at least some of them back to get good light near the base.

Here's the Tam Kam mother tree. It isn't entirely dead- it is now leafing out from the trunk, up to about 4' high. There is even a single bud on one of the branches (just to the left of the top of the old support post).

I'm seeing similar growth (central leader to ~4') on the Izu.


What was your lowest temp, Bob?


It got down to -9.5F. There was also another night when it got down to -8F. I tried to protect the Kam Tam, but only on the -9.5F night did I add a heat source- the other night was just a tarp which may not have done much.



I think your Tam Kam died back to the 3rd or 4th year wood. Alex on the old Gardenweb had the same problem when the temp got down to -9F. Your Tam Kam will regrow with lots of vegetation and you have to prune out lots of branches. I have to do the same with my Nikita's Gift a couple years ago.



All of my early persimmon grafts didn't make it, I did them too early. But the re-grafts are all starting to poke now. I have had this problem before, and your failure just adds ammunition to the fact that persimmon grafts should not be done too early.


I think Cliff England only just started grafting persimmons down in Kentucky.


I don't disagree with the general statement (I've never done any early persimmon grafting to know either way), but I think in this case the early failures were due to iffy scionwood (some from others and some from me- maybe storage related?). The Tam Kam wood was the only one which looked good and both grafts of TK took fine. But it was already pretty late, around 5/15, by which time we'd already had a few weeks in the 80's.


Bob, 5/15 is not long after I grafted mine, and I am a week or more ahead of you in terms of GDD. Things were plenty warm but the trees were not awake enough.

BTW I don't think I updated this thread with my persimmon damage from last winter. Hachiya died and all others made it. I lost a lot of wood on Chocolate and Maru but there is still good wood high up on them. All others (Jiro, 20th century, Yostumizo, Saijo, etc) are fine.


I just checked my notes- the first round (with only Tam Kam taking) was on 5/17. The 2nd round (with good success) was on 5/23, 6 days later. Maybe my first grafting was just on the cusp. But I think the wood also made a difference- even as I was grafting it, I had doubts about some of their viability. Another possibility is that I was grafting to Virginiana, rather than Kaki- does it wake up quicker?

Either way, I'll be sure to wait until late May next year for any persimmon grafting. I've got plenty of stuff to get done in April and early may, so putting off some grafting is actually a benefit.

If you got no die-back on Jiro, it must be quite a bit milder during the winter than I get here. Ichi Ki Kei Jiro, which is supposed to be hardier than Jiro, has died back to the snowline (or ground) both times- one of which became the Virginiana I was grafting to. What was your winter low?


Here's a pic of my Tam Kam now. The Izu looks pretty similar. I should probably try using cloths-pins to get the growth to be a bit more horizontal. But, I'm worried about knocking it off and killing the tree...


The cold have killed all of your fruiting branches to the 2nd or 3rd years wood. It is going to be another 2 years or so before you see any fruits on your tree. Very unfortunate.



My Eureka looked that bad last spring. This spring, much to my amazement, it's covered with fruit. I had to thin off 50%.


My Hardy Chicago in the Maryland mountains (Zone 6b) has just set its first pair of figlets:

Too bad it's September; I fear these will not have enough time to ripen before winter. But this is a sign of progress nonetheless. The tree is in its second leaf post-transplant. Last winter, everything above the surface died back, despite having been protected with burlap and leaves. It grew back 5 feet this season.


I'm new to figs but I think its neat and something to be excited about. I've got seven figs growing from cuttings this year. I'm thinking on spending some money for some high demand figs. Thinking if I'm going to grow figs and go threw the fuss I might just as well have high demand.


What figs do you consider high demand, Johnny? Are you intending to sell the figs or the trees?


I don't want to sell any of them. It would be more fun giving them away. I am very happy to have the figs that I have, but growing them in pots and storing them in the garage will get to be a chore so I figure if I expand my collection it should be with something like Black Madeira or something more people would want to grow. I guess it's not that big of a deal. I have Brunswick so far. I don't even know what a fresh fig tastes like. It's just fun to grow them. I have a neighbor down the road that has huge pots with figs growing in them. I need to stop by and see what he has. I watched a video of a guy who grows lots of figs and when he made the video of the taste test of the Black Madeira he claimed that it would be what he grows from now on.



You may want to try eating figs before you grow one. To me, it's easier to like dried figs. Dried figs are similar to dates. However, fresh figs taste differently. It is an acquired taste. I know people who love dried figs but can't stand fresh figs, my husband included.

This is the first year I ate a several fresh figs from my own trees. Different varieties taste differently. My Paradiso, even not fully ripe, tasted good. My Chicago hardy, only the fully ripe ones tasted good. The soft, ripe but not wrinkling fully ripe had raw taste to it.

I have 6 varieties. If I were to get more, I'll be quite selective. If you can, try some fresh ones to see if you'd like them enough to grow them.


The trouble with many fresh figs in my view is they are too watery. Nearly all the large fruited varieties are a squishy, watery, mess. I prefer the smaller fruited types that shrivel up some while still on the bush. Those fitting that bill so far for me are: Strawberry Verte, Paradiso, Battaglia, St Rita, and RdB. I have Black Madeira, Preto, Flanders, and several others that I haven't tasted yet but have a good reputation for quality.


My in-ground Sal's started ripening last week, RdB should start soon. Both died to 6-8" stumps over the winter at 0F under a pile of mulch.

Fresh figs are a delicacy, I think the biggest obstacle for people is the texture more than the flavor.


For those who like dried figs like my husband and I, texture is not an issue. It is the flavor/taste that makes the difference.

Fruitnut, thanks for nameing some varieties. I will look into them.