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  • Pinching question for a young tree

    I got this HC last spring and potted it up for the summer. It was about an 18" stick and grew nicely over the summer. It spent the winter in the garage and after some shuffling, it is growing nicely again. Is it advisable to pinch back the new growth after 5 or 6 new leaves have grown on a young plant like this? It had about 2 dozen breba figs early on but they all fell off. Thanks so much for your advise.
    You may only view thumbnails in this gallery. This gallery has 2 photos.
    SW MO Zone 6a

  • #2
    It's personal preference. I would let the scaffold branches grow more, but that's me.

    Where did you get your HC? Can you post more pictures of the leaves? I think it it looks like you may have something else.
    Calvin, Wish list is to finish working on the new house, someday.
    Bored? Grab a rake, paint roller, or a cordless drill and come over!

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    • drphil69
      drphil69 commented
      Editing a comment
      It does not look like my HC leaves from last year either, but mine are just starting 2nd leaf.

  • #3
    I agree with Calvin and would add that IMO, branch "pinching" should only be done on Blueberry bushes, fig trees in warmer zones (longer growing season) and on fig tree fruiting branches. If the goal is fig production, limiting the total number (quantity) of fruiting branches and pinching late emerging figlets yields better results. Young fig trees in colder zones should be Pruned in the first few years (1 - 3) to establish the main structure, scaffold limbs and fruiting branches, http://www.ourfigs.com/forum/figs-ho...=1475#post1475 .

    The main goal for this season should be to establish a main stem or trunk for support of the "pruned form" of your choice, http://www.ourfigs.com/forum/figs-ho...-espalier-form .

    Good Luck.
    Pete R - Hudson Valley, NY - zone 5b

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    • #4
      Here are a couple pics of the leaves. It was sold as a HC at a local well established nursery. They said this is the only variety they carry.
      Do you think it might be a different variety? Thanks for help.
      You may only view thumbnails in this gallery. This gallery has 3 photos.
      SW MO Zone 6a

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      • #5
        You may only view thumbnails in this gallery. This gallery has 2 photos.

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        • #6
          Meatburner,

          Its probably best to wait until later in the season for mature leaves and some actual ripe figs for comparison. Its possible it may be Hardy Chicago and the leaves are just young and have not "matured" as yet.

          Here are some typical Hardy Chicago leaves they are thick and hairy. The first 2 photos are of Juvenile leaves.
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          And here are leaves from a young Hardy Chicago from Edible Landscaping.
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          Pete R - Hudson Valley, NY - zone 5b

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          • #7
            Thank you AscPete for your thoughts. I will let it grow and see what happens over this season. I appreciate your help.
            Last edited by meatburner; 05-02-2015, 08:51 PM.
            SW MO Zone 6a

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            • #8
              I got about a dozen figs off of each HC last year. I know its not ideal to harvest figs from a 1 year tree, but I just couldn't help myself. My leaves look more like Pete's, and as he said let it grow out and the leaves may change. You might even get some figs this year!
              Phil
              Zone 7A - Newark, DE; Zone 8A - Wilmington, NC;

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              • AscPete
                AscPete commented
                Editing a comment
                I have been able to harvest a couple figs from most of my 1 year old trees. Simply training them as single stem trees forces early fig production.

            • #9
              I am new to figs and this is all so interesting. Thanks everyone.
              SW MO Zone 6a

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              • #10
                You're welcome...
                Please keep us updated... Thanks.
                Pete R - Hudson Valley, NY - zone 5b

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                • #11
                  will do my friend.
                  SW MO Zone 6a

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                  • #12
                    Hi Meatburner.
                    I had the same question as you two weeks ago....but i was scared to ask.....so i decided to just pinch it. I have a brown turkey a little smaller than your HC. I just went ahead and pinched it. There were 4 branches coming out and i pinched them all....this is how it looks like now. Just to give you an idea of what will happen if you do pinch.....not sure if i did the right thing...but seems like it is making the figs get bigger....
                    You may only view thumbnails in this gallery. This gallery has 2 photos.
                    Quy
                    SoCal, Zone 9b

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                    • AscPete
                      AscPete commented
                      Editing a comment
                      You should never be afraid to ask questions. !!! I always do

                      Pinching limbs creates a specific growth pattern which may or maynot be your intent. I posted this simple diagram of pruning versus pinching as it pertains to fig branches, http://www.ourfigs.com/filedata/fetc...4&d=1424378900
                      Both disrupt auxin (hormone) distribution in the plant with differing results.

                    • Q*
                      Q* commented
                      Editing a comment
                      Thanks Pete! I was thinking of pinching it to make a huge round bush on top of a stick....the goal was to make the plant form a lollipop shape....kinda backfired because instead of growing more branches at the nodes...there were figs...now i cant get myself to pinch off the figs to get branching....guess i'll just eat the 10 figs that formed in a month or so.....cant let them go to waste!...then hope for branching afterwards.

                    • AscPete
                      AscPete commented
                      Editing a comment
                      Letting the branches grow out first then pruning the ends (several inches and nodes) would have given you the Lollipop shape. Pruning completely removes the auxins and usually causes buds to form along the entire branch.

                  • #13
                    Will pinching off a few sunburned leafs on a long slender tree I am air layer my first attempt speed up rooting? Almost one month with no sign of root but still have new leaf growing out of top daily.
                    Zone 5 Chicago IL Wish list:
                    1) Rest peacfully Amico Bello Buddy 👼🏼.
                    2) This weeks ebay auctions.

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                    • AscPete
                      AscPete commented
                      Editing a comment
                      The leaves actually promote the root growth for air layers. If there are some live sections of the leaf they do more good left alone, if they die they wll fall off on their own.
                      Did you girdle the stem? Roots are usually produced faster when the air layered limb is girdled and the temperatures are warm (above 70 deg F). Good Luck.

                  • #14
                    I did not girdle because was my only tree. Made small mark to see green in 2 spots and that's all. Plus has not been majority hot temps more or less 65F+
                    Zone 5 Chicago IL Wish list:
                    1) Rest peacfully Amico Bello Buddy 👼🏼.
                    2) This weeks ebay auctions.

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