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  • tree form not bush now.

    hi all,haven't posted for a while now.wanted to share my plan of attack this growing season.i decided to cut all my ingrounds to a tree form ,well with only 3-4 main trunks growing up and staked.these bush form trees here just keep putting out small figs that never ripen , not to mention they absolutely look like a jungled mess,not enough time here in 6B.so all 9 of my ingrounds were recently trimed in this fashion ,in hopes to get the figs ripe on time.i must admit they look a lot nicer and neater too.my winter plan has also changed .i plan after leaf off (dormancy ) to cut them all flush with ground and mulch.they always seem to start up really late here ,and when i would protect them it was a lot of hard work and they died back anyway to the ground mostly.so i think this is my game plan now.and i have 5 container trees left,i am done shuffling figs ,well except for just a few.and i have some cuttings rooting as i post i just started 2 weeks ago,these will be next summers sale and gift trees.so this is where i am at now in 8 years of growing so far.i did a lot of thinking ,and experimenting to get to this decision.i must admit it is a lot easier mowing around them and they sure look neat.
    zone 6

  • #2
    Most people consider tree form to be a single stem coming from the ground, and bush form anything more than 1. I agree with your decisions to limit the stems to 3 or 4. They will be thicker, with more energy directed to growing each one, and you will get more figs. In a cold area with die back to the ground, true tree form is generally not recommended because more stems gives more potential buds at the soil level to grow back after the die back, and thus the likelihood of losing the entire tree to the cold is lowered.
    Richard - San Diego 10a

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    • #3
      Not sure fig not ripening has anything to do with fig tree form. With either form, you still need to prune and only leave right number of fruiting branches. For in-ground, tree or bush is just personal preference. In cold climate, bush is just easier to manage since it bounces much easier than a large trunk killed to ground.
      Princeton, New Jersey, 6B
      flickr: https://www.flickr.com/photos/red-sun/albums
      http://growingfruit.org/ for all fruits

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      • #4
        I have headed in this same direction with my in-ground trees. Most have anywhere from 2-4 trunks. A couple have a single trunk and a handful have 5-6 trunks. I really became sold on this after reducing the number of trunks on my Nero600m from something like 15 down to three trunks. The light penetration made a huge difference and the tree is now much more productive. I think it also depends on how much area you have for the tree/bush to spread out. I have a Vasilika Sika (BC) with 8 or so trunks but they all radiate out from the center and all get good light. So having a larger number of trunks works well with that particular tree.
        Steve
        D-i-c-k-e-r-s-o-n, MD; zone 7a
        WL: Castillon

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        • #5
          To me, this is a gradual process. For the first a couple of years, I just let them grow up to like as many as 8 branches. More foliage the better, so leaves make sugar to build roots. When trees grow taller and stronger, I start to cut down the numbers of trunks. Also when trees get taller, they started to branch out. There is no need for so many trunks. As to how many trunks to keep? It is all personal preference. I'll be happy with this tree below.

          Attached Files
          Princeton, New Jersey, 6B
          flickr: https://www.flickr.com/photos/red-sun/albums
          http://growingfruit.org/ for all fruits

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          • Bellefleurs
            Bellefleurs commented
            Editing a comment
            I love the stone around the base.
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