After 6 or 7 years of hardly any winter damage on my figs, I’ve had significant die-back 3 of the last 4 winters, including this one, so I’m interested in ways of hedging my bets for the worse winters by protecting one or two bushes. What are all my options? What do growers in zone 6 do?
I have an old tobacco barn where I’ve been able to overwinter potted figs very well, but I haven’t had success actually fruiting figs in pots, but I could try using larger pots than I have so far or maybe doing whatever else any of you all would recommend.
Another thought is to have a large potted fig ready to plant in the ground every spring, either as an additional fig to grow or as a replacement for one that died back, or I could just sell it or give it away if my in-ground figs didn’t have any die-back that year.
What about protecting, though? Could I prune a fig back heavily in November and then cover it?
We only had one spell of a few days this past winter where it dropped into the single digits and otherwise I don’t think we even saw low teens, and I covered a few young bushes (~3-4’ tall, 2nd year in the ground after dying back last winter even though my older figs came through fine last winter, although the older bushes are in better locations) with comforter type blankets I bought at thrift stores, but even being covered with those blankets for that cold spell they still all died back to the ground again.