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  • Gashing to ripen

    Does gashing a Common or San Pedro fig do anything to help in ripening? Anyone ever tried it?

    I've seen references where people gash (make a slice in the fruit) Sycamore figs that wouldn't otherwise ripen.
    Don - OH Zone 6a Wish list: Verdolino, Black Celeste, Rubado, Zaffiro, Moro de Caneva, Nerucciolo d'Elba, Bordissot Blanca Negra

  • #2
    I don't know. But after seeing your post and looking up the tremendous Galil article on fig fruit gashing, I'm going to try it soon:
    An Ancient Technique for Ripening Sycomore Fruit in East-Mediterranean Countries: http://www.hort.purdue.edu/newcrop/h...ing%2010-2.pdf
    Tony WV 6b


    • #3
      Please report on your experiences... My experience with figs (Ficus Carica) has been that when damaged early in their growth, the figs usually callus over, grow smaller and deformed, when damaged near ripening, the figs tend to spoil, mold and attract flies and insects.
      Pete R - Hudson Valley, NY - zone 5b


      • #4
        Don, from your question I'm not sure if you want to induce earlier ripening in a common fig or are you trying to get a San Pedro to ripen or both. To speed up ripening in the common fig some have had success with a dab of olive oil on the ostiole a couple weeks before normal ripening. Also removing the leaves from the tree or branch is said to speed up ripening (sounds counter-intuitive).
        Regarding San Pedros I don't think that gashing a San Pedro or Caducous ( Smyrna) figs would induce ripening, they need to be pollinated. I suspect if it worked some commercial growers would have had success. Although if they could induce ripening they would probablably due so by spraying diluted phytohormones (maybe some have?).
        Gashing causes a release of ethylene gas and the presence of the gas around the gashed fig induces the parthenocarpic ripening. The presence of ethylene gas will also ripen ungashed sycomore fruit if the gas were contained around the fruit by a plastic bag or other means. However give gashing a try or maybe placing an over ripe apple or other fruit in a plastic bag surrounding your figs. You might get lucky.
        If you're really want your San Pedro to ripen and are ambitious you might consider artificial pollination. Make arrangements in advance to get hold of a capri fig full of pollen, (appropriate timing is important) and try pollinating your San Pedro. I believe Roeding & Eisen employed this technique back in the early 1890's when they were first trying to introduce Smyrna type figs into California.
        John Z5 Wish list: