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  • The addiction of collecting figs

    I'm trying to figure this out. I know my partner wonders this, since he looks over at all the fig growing paraphernalia and plants in various stages of growth/mold and wonders where the dog's going to be able to sit outside if we get any more trees. We have a malamute mix and I actually think he'll enjoy lying in the shade of the trees when they get bigger. Sunny California has not been his favorite state to live.

    Just now, I caught myself looking over Raintree's fig selection online for the umpteenth time, "just to see" if there was anything interesting added since the last time I looked it over a few weeks ago. There wasn't, but I have to laugh at myself for doing it, especially when I got caught -- "You're buying MORE?!" Though he's been great about transporting bags of potting mix to where they're needed. I was relatively "fig-normal" until recently, thought maybe just one good tree would be a fine thing to have. Now every morning I have to slowly walk around all of them drinking tea before going on with my day. I saw that others here do that too: "Every. Day." Ha!

    Just remember, we can stop anytime we want. But why should we?

    What about you? Anyone else remember how it started for them, if they originally planned on maybe getting "just one"?
    Last edited by Sarahkt; 06-16-2015, 08:31 PM.
    Sarah
    Bay Area, CA (zone: 9B)

  • #2
    You're among friends/addicts here Sarah. I just got one today that I'd been really wanting and it made it a super exciting day (thank you again Kerry!). It's now "the last one" in my roughly 100 fig tree collection. It only takes a few hours to shuffle them in and out.... One of my fears is my family having an intervention. They just don't understand, but they do love me still.
    Greg, Maine, zone 5. Wish List: Green Michurinska

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    • Sarahkt
      Sarahkt commented
      Editing a comment
      Congrats on finally finding "the last one," Greg. If it really is the last... Curious to know what kind of fig it was that finally completed the collection. Myself, I can't possibly stop until I get Grise de Saint Jean, Black Madeira, Battaglia, Col de Dame Gris and Blanc (going for the basic Col de Dame trio), the list just gets added to faster than I can take a tree off!

    • GregMartin
      GregMartin commented
      Editing a comment
      It's the one that I got right after I got the last "last one", and before I got the next "last one" I'm afraid. It's a friend's spare rooted cutting of Sodus that was gifted to me. Up here in cold country that's exciting!

      I'd be happy to send you Battaglia cuttings in the fall BTW. Just drop me a reminder then if interested.

    • Sarahkt
      Sarahkt commented
      Editing a comment
      Yes, Greg, I'm interested. Will do, thanks!

  • #3
    It's a slippery slope we walk on!
    My lucky number is 14 so when I got to 8 or 9, 14 seamed like a good number to aim for. I passed that last week thanks to a local forum member. Now 28 seams like a good number...
    I can't imagine what it must feel like to have 100 great plants. But think of this, they all started with 8 or 9 then blew past 14 and 28 was next.
    Ian

    Really happy with what I have.

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    • #4
      stage them all at different levels on patios, in the garden, in growing rooms...it seems as if figs don't attract as much attention when they are staged showing foliage and shade at different spots and levels...

      It's worked for me...so far



      Ross B. Santa Rosa Calif zone 9b, wish list: CdD Blanc, Igo, Palmata, Sucrette, Morroco, Galicia Negra

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      • Sarahkt
        Sarahkt commented
        Editing a comment
        Hmm, hiding in plain sight. I like that.

    • #5
      Three years ago I was gifted two great freshly rooted cuttings. I foolishly thought that I would not want any more until I moved on to some acreage. I was offered more and declined, it was suggested that I would change my mind and want more. I thought no way. Then in year two I bought two TC figs from WellSpring..... and once again thought I'm good. Then the insanity set in I got 3 for X-Mas and then 4 more TC trees. Then going into my third year with figs I got cuttings and I'm learning to root. Then I bought and traded for more trees.

      So from 4 last fall to breaking 30 already this year. ...

      yeah! !!
      Last edited by COGardener; 06-17-2015, 07:46 AM.
      Scott - Colorado Springs, CO - Zone 4/5 (Depending on the year) - Elevation 6266ft

      “Though the problems of the world are increasingly complex, the solutions remain embarrassingly simple.” – Bill Mollison

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      • FarisAzka
        FarisAzka commented
        Editing a comment
        What a coincidence. I was also gifted two great freshly rooted cuttings. But it was last May. They were brown turkeys and have been fruiting like mad. Already bought four new trees to this day. I'm aiming for 10 since I only got so much space left.

    • #6
      "Fig-normal" what is that???????
      Dave- Waterford, Ct. Zone 6a

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      • #7
        I have been grow fig all my life... And never thought anything big about them besides papa purple fig tree. In fact I never known anyone else to have fig because I was not something that ever interest me. Once I had issue with tree and I use Internet to search problem tis when the A.D.D. Kick in and I was like a baby finally out of the whom to see there is a huge belle world out here and the diferent ways to grow them and the many variety is what drew me in.

        It is nice hobby. It feel good when you hear someone say " you grow fig?? In Chicago ???" And I can say yes look photo I have many. Or when people use to come eat fruit and say "I can't believe you grew tis"

        I enjoy knowing I can now,from all you help, make a stick into a belle fruit bearing tree 😘
        Zone 5 Chicago IL Wish list:
        1) Rest peacfully Amico Bello Buddy 👼🏼.
        2) This weeks ebay auctions.

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        • #8
          Figs......it is when gardening, growing fruit and collecting living beanie baby type objects collide and morphs into hoarding.

          Mine started when a neighbor asked if I wanted a fig. Grew a lot of different fruiting plants and said sure. Had never had a fig fruit before except as fig newtons. It grew...froze back to the ground the first hard brutal winter here in central Florida Next spring it roared back and fruited..one bite and I was hooked. Bought two more varieties from local nurseries and both proved to not be what they were supposed to be. Went looking and found fig forums and from there the collection has blossomed. It has led to building two greenhouses and clearing more land and hope to have 500 varieties in ground in the next couple of seasons. Now with this forum it has changed yet again. We really do have a great group here and no trouble makers, well except for Hershell.
          Cutting sales have ended for the season. Plant sales will start March 1 at 8 eastern time. If it is still too cold in your area I can hold your plants till a date of your choosing.

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          • Whiterk
            Whiterk commented
            Editing a comment
            Amazing! Your collection makes my head spin. I hope you are going to offer tours. Hahaha

          • Sarahkt
            Sarahkt commented
            Editing a comment
            That perfectly describes fig hoarding! They are indeed our living beanie babies. Ahaha.

            I've been wanting to check out UC Davis's fig repository for a tasting tour ever since I learned about their treasure trove, but I think things have changed with them being so overwhelmed so you now need to be affiliated with a larger organization, is that right? If so, I will just want to come to Florida and see your fig orchard instead! Yeah, you should definitely offer tours.

        • #9
          My collection started when I inherited a family heirloom tree from my sister-in-laws father. I had that tree for over 10 years before I added to the collection. And then I placed an order with the USDA at UCD and my collection doubled. Last summer I built a greenhouse for my figs and other plants that needed over-wintering. Last winter I found the other forum and my collection quadrupled and my wife keeps asking me "why do we have all these figs".

          I should have a good crop of figs this year after all the help and advise from everyone here at the forum. I just finished pinching my heirloom fig and anticipate a good crop of figs from it this year.

          Well, we could have worse vices (although I'm not sure our significant others would agree)
          Last edited by fitzski; 06-17-2015, 10:02 AM.
          Kevin (Eastern MA - Zone 5b/6a)

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          • #10
            I'm sure this is not fast by some collector's standards, but somehow or other I went from 0 to 73 in 16 months (plus 4 trees expected in mail this week from trades and several cuttings still rooting). Got to slow down now, I won't have room to store them all, and the work of raising these figs is going to conflict with the rest of my garden and orchard.
            It looks like I will get to try the figs on about 40 of them this year, can't wait!
            Ed
            SW PA zone 6a

            Comment


            • eboone
              eboone commented
              Editing a comment
              6/18/15 edit - recounted after receiving 3 trees in mail yesterday, I have 83 plants of 65 varieties (plus those slow in rooting)...I think not knowing how many is a sign of either the addiction or age, not sure which

          • #11
            Well. I quit. This is my last post here. No! The auctions not over yet. Sorry, I just need ( want ) a fey more. Well I started when a guy that I was working for asked if I grew figs and I said yea, Ive got a BT. He said probably Celeste but I'll bring you a few tomorrow. He brought me Magnilia, Beall, Excell and VDB. I thought he was giving me some disease or something. Any way I debated on throwing them away or planting them so I set them in the GH for the winter and they budded in the spring and a few figs appeared that were different from any that I had ever saw or tasted before so here I am just wanting 1 tree. If anyone will just send me one tree I'll be happy so if your interested in helping pm me and I see if it is one that I want. I'll need to check my variety list though so I'm sure it's not a duplicate of the few that I have but it will only take an hour or so. Yea I'll beg, buy or take a cutting just to get another tree.
            Nothing in the world takes the place of growing citrus till figs come along. Ray City, Ga. Zone 8 b.

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            • Sarahkt
              Sarahkt commented
              Editing a comment
              Hershell, are you pool sharking us? Behind that "I have but one fig tree to give for my country" lies a hoard to rival WillsC's, doesn't there?

              Still, check your PM! I've got extras!

            • Hershell
              Hershell commented
              Editing a comment
              Oh boy. It worked, one unsuspecting collector. Thanks Sarah, maybe we can trade a few.

            • Sarahkt
              Sarahkt commented
              Editing a comment
              It's not unsuspecting if I am totally suspecting. Maybe it's really that I need to foist off my spare figs to make room for others I don't already have, and it is YOU that is the unsuspecting collector.

          • #12
            I was raised on Kadotas from age 6....with a grandmother from Sweden who canned everything...kadotas made it into the winter stockup....ate them all winter, along with canned cherries, peaches and pears....yes I admit it...I'm a fruitaholic. Got a Kadota tree for fathers day about 10 years ago and it proceeded to croak, imagine that...a full grown, potted tree....saved 1 cutting and started it in our shade structure.....then figs for fun as a lurker and here....now with somewhere around 40 varieties...and quite a few starts going. Quite....a...few!

            Taking the first dozen out to reward a local (farm market) farmer for his work, he's going to be a happy camper, so are the 3 workers he has employed. Missions and Kadotas from a 100+ year old orchard. We can track that orchard back to the turn of the century at around 1899-1900...not far from the plaza in Sonoma, California.

            A local neighborhood here in Santa Rosa is going to get a good dose of the fig collecting virus in a little bit when I distribute started cuttings from two local heiritage trees in the neighborhood. Everyone eats from them...I think there are about 100+ starts of the two trees at that location.

            Another heritage tree which became the point of controversy in a land dispute, produced about 50 starts here last year....some going to the neighbors of the two bickering participants...some going to long time residents who knew the tree...before it was unceremoniously cut down in 2013.

            I've got the space, the water and the equipment to do cuttings in mass, closed my iris nursery a couple years ago....so I do this, spreading it around and loving it...
            Ross B. Santa Rosa Calif zone 9b, wish list: CdD Blanc, Igo, Palmata, Sucrette, Morroco, Galicia Negra

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            • #13
              I stumbled on a fig forum and realized there was more than 1 type of fig. I was determined to taste the categories of flavors!
              Frank ~ zone 7a VA

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              • #14
                Once I found out that it was possible to grow figs in PA, I got myself 2 trees to try it out. That was last spring. Later that summer I acquired 4 more trees. Over the winter, I experimented with growing out cuttings so I could sample different types of figs. That proved to be way too much fun because I now have 35 trees in pots, 2 in ground, and another 20ish cuttings in cups. I'd like to cap my collection at 3 dozen, but I doubt that's really going to happen at this point.
                Johnny
                Stuff I grow: Google Doc

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                • COGardener
                  COGardener commented
                  Editing a comment
                  How about 3 dozen gross, then it all works out!

              • #15
                I think...it's the varieties of figs that are collecting growers, not vice versa.
                30ish. I wanted 3.
                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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                • #16
                  I've noticed that once the fever hits there's no stopping it. You would need counseling lol

                  Comment


                  • Whiterk
                    Whiterk commented
                    Editing a comment
                    My name is Randall. I'm a figaholic.

                  • Sarahkt
                    Sarahkt commented
                    Editing a comment
                    Yes, I definitely got that feeling when I wrote my first post on this forum. "Hi, my name is Sarah and I've got a fig problem."

                • #17
                  Needed some holly trees for a boundary a few years ago. Surprised to find that I could order some online. (Thus my username hllyhll - holly hill - at the previous forum.) In doing so was amazed to discover that a lemon tree could also be purchased through the mail and grown in the north (inside), along with fruit trees of all kinds. Tried a few with mixed results. Also ordered a couple afterthought, add-on fig trees because so inexpensive, a cut-rate Hardy Chicago and a Mission, I think. Unlike the citrus, these exploded with growth within a month, forming big beautiful leaves, and fruit! The next year ordered trees from Petals from the Past and Bay Flora, which came with fruit growing and which I ate within a month or two. The flavor(s)! Even more stunning than the plant vigor and foliage. After that, cuttings galore.

                  The odd thing is that I almost did not order those initial add-on figs. Then I was bothered after doing so because I figured it would prove a waste. I had some kind of bias against figs. Citrus seemed super exciting. Figs seemed blech. Because of Fig Newtons? Because of "I don't give a fig"? Because the fig leaves in pictures looked ungainly and dull compared to those of many other fruit trees? And because I had never remotely tasted one fresh.
                  Tony WV 6b
                  https://mountainfigs.net/

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                  • #18
                    Fruits in general are a problem for me...last night I had a nightmare rabbits chewed my newly grafted IKKJ persimmon. I don't normally dream, either!
                    https://www.figbid.com/Listing/Browse?Seller=Kelby
                    SE PA
                    Zone 6

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                    • #19
                      I'm like Frank, I thought there only two kinds of figs, Brown Turkey and Celeste. Boy was I wrong!! So I'm excited about tasting other varieties. I did get an Italian Golden Honey, but it was pure sugar to me, and I gave it to a friend. Now I know better about my taste in figs and that's helped me to narrow my focus. I only have room for about 20 figs and THAT is my limit. There is just no more room!!
                      Ray in Columbia, SC Zone 8

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                      • #20
                        I have acquired a little over 30 cultivars now and have on tasted my Sweet George. I have figs on the Sweet George, Hardy Chicago and JF&E's LSU Improved Celeste so far. I'm still learning about the flavors, and don't know what I like or don't like as of yet. I have a feeling I will like them all to an extent and some more than others. With the short season and slow growth rate of the figs here, it may take another few years for me reach that kind of epiphany as Ray did.
                        Scott - Colorado Springs, CO - Zone 4/5 (Depending on the year) - Elevation 6266ft

                        “Though the problems of the world are increasingly complex, the solutions remain embarrassingly simple.” – Bill Mollison

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                        • #21
                          I grew up being told that there was only one fig that grows well along the gulf coast. I googled fig varieties and found out that I have missing out my whole life. There are others besides BT. Now I'm contimplating buying the lot behind mine to expand my planting area.
                          Randall - Gulf Breeze, FL. zone 8b. Wish list: Anything that "newnandawg" - Mike, ranks as an 8 out 10 or higher.

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                          • #22
                            You can tell if you have FCD (fig communicable disease) when you hide the packages that get delivered or get up early and pot your cuttings. There are worse things that you can love. Jimmy Choo shoes Cartier Coco Chanel. I pointed this out to my hubby and told him to look how much money I was saving him. He looked confused and then I stuck my foot out with garden crocs. How many is too many? I will let you all know. Joyce

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                            • #23
                              I'm confused... what is this "too many" you mention?
                              Scott - Colorado Springs, CO - Zone 4/5 (Depending on the year) - Elevation 6266ft

                              “Though the problems of the world are increasingly complex, the solutions remain embarrassingly simple.” – Bill Mollison

                              Comment


                              • #24
                                Scott, there are moments of stark clarity that suddenly hit me, like I don't have enough potting soil, or enough sunny spots. But I like Ross' idea -- STAGING. Time to build an atrium.
                                Sarah
                                Bay Area, CA (zone: 9B)

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                                • #25
                                  I really honestly and truly don't know or have any recollection of how I wound up with nearly 100 fig trees

                                  Comment


                                  • GregMartin
                                    GregMartin commented
                                    Editing a comment
                                    For me it's the long winters and the great forum members.
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