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  • Raasti Northern Persian UNK

    A friend brought this one over from the old country. It's a long story but the bottom line is that an orchardist in northern part of the country recommended this variety. We were hoping it didn't need the wasp and it turns out that it doesn't! My cutting was started in the Spring of 2014 and it is currently growing in a 5 gallon SIP. I can't recall if it set any brebas this Spring but if it did it did not hold onto them. I picked the first main crop fig on July 28 which is right around the day that my first Improved Celeste figs ripened. The only variety to ripen a main crop earlier was Florea on July 25. The fig in the photo wasn't drooping very much but it was soft and came off easily with no white sap. So I think it was pretty much ripe. The pulp was very light colored, a very light pink. It had a honey-like and creamy flavor with quite a bit of seed crunch. It seemed to have a pretty high sugar content as figs go. Overall, it had an excellent flavor, especially considering this is the first fig from this tree in its 2nd season. This fig is unlike any other fig in my collection (that I know of) and so it fills a niche. Probably the closest in flavor to it is Atreano. If anyone has any insights on its relationship to known varieties please let me know. I don't know anything about its cold hardiness but the fact that it is an early ripening variety would seem to make it a good fig for fig growers in cooler areas.
    Steve
    D-i-c-k-e-r-s-o-n, MD; zone 7a
    WL: Verdolino, Figue Jaune, Nantes Maroc, Lussheim

  • #2
    Steve, I've always heard Persian figs were unique and excellent producers, congrats on a beautiful new fig!
    Rafael
    Zone 7b, Queens, New York

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    • #3
      Sounds very interesting, Steve! What does Raasti mean?

      Please let me know if you have extra cuttings this winter. Thanks for sharing.
      https://www.figbid.com/Listing/Browse?Seller=Kelby
      SE PA
      Zone 6

      Comment


      • #4
        Very nice find Steve ,thanks for sharing. You should leave the next one hang a couple of days longer to see if the skin gets any thinner. It could be a variety that dries well on the tree. Very common with light skinned figs .

        Comment


        • #5
          Thanks for the comments. Kelby, I think Raasti is the name of the person who was growing the mother tree. I'll go back and check my notes this evening to confirm. I should have a few cuttings so send me a PM in the Fall after dormancy. Chris, you are probably right that the flavor would get more concentrated with more time on the tree. I have had some raccoon damage though and I didn't want to risk it. They decimated my grapes this year but so far haven't robbed figs. I'm sure it is only a matter of time though. I'm still working on the best solution for the critters...
          Steve
          D-i-c-k-e-r-s-o-n, MD; zone 7a
          WL: Verdolino, Figue Jaune, Nantes Maroc, Lussheim

          Comment


          • Kelby
            Kelby commented
            Editing a comment
            Thanks Steve

          • Rafaelissimmo
            Rafaelissimmo commented
            Editing a comment
            .22

          • Chrisk
            Chrisk commented
            Editing a comment
            Dang it Rafael,lol, it took me a minute there.

        • #6
          I suggest a coonhound.
          https://www.figbid.com/Listing/Browse?Seller=Kelby
          SE PA
          Zone 6

          Comment


          • Rewton
            Rewton commented
            Editing a comment
            That's a beautiful dog!

          • grasshopper
            grasshopper commented
            Editing a comment
            Second that, is he yours?

        • #7
          I continue to be impressed with how early the Raasti Northern Persian UNK is. I had not noticed than any brebas on any of my figs were ripening. Then by chance I noticed this fig on the Raasti which I have growing in a container. It was slightly overripe but pretty good. Heck, it is the first fig of the season and the first at our new place so it would be good no matter what. In actuality it was not as good as the main crop but still it is great to get any figs in June. This may be my most early fig; however, my Improved Celeste might give it a run for its money if it were capable of making a breba crop which remains to be seen.
          Last edited by Rewton; 06-22-2016, 08:41 PM.
          Steve
          D-i-c-k-e-r-s-o-n, MD; zone 7a
          WL: Verdolino, Figue Jaune, Nantes Maroc, Lussheim

          Comment


          • Rewton
            Rewton commented
            Editing a comment
            I should also note that this is after we had a terrible cool and wet Spring. Plus, with preparations for the move I didn't get my figs out of the garage and growing as early as I could have.

        • #8
          Nice fig. Fruit and leaves in the first photos, plus early ripening times, indicate that it could be Marseilles by another of its many names. Could be its own cultivar. Hard to say via a few photos.
          Tony WV 6b
          https://mountainfigs.net/

          Comment


          • mountainfigs
            mountainfigs commented
            Editing a comment
            Yes, Marseilles (White) (also seems to go by Lattarulla, Italian Honey, St Anthony, etc) apparently ripens in about 70 days with Improved Celeste, Florea, and Ronde de Bordeaux.

          • mountainfigs
            mountainfigs commented
            Editing a comment
            Now, a couple growing seasons later, my view is less that this is Marseilles White than some other fig. It looks fairly similar in fruit and leaf and the breba ripens early with both, but main crop Marseilles White has not been early here at all, and the fruit quality looks somewhat different too. Seems clear to me now too that Marseilles White and Lattarula are two quite different varieties from each other also, and neither now seem to be this Raasti with its much more early main crop ripening time.

          • grasshopper
            grasshopper commented
            Editing a comment
            Thanks for the update, Tony. I was going to put a = sign on the list.

        • #9
          WHOA!!! THAT fig looks like my unknown fig!!! Leaves too!!!! Here's mine, with leaf pix... what do you think? It's delicious too. Someone said I may have picked it not fully ripe, so it didn't get all the way red... I don't know, I never cut them before. The pix of the insides was the first one that I picked 5/29. My lawn guy picked and ATE the 2nd one the day I wanted to pick it, so I never got to see the inside fully ripe to compare.

          Here's 2 of the brebas
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          Here's a shot of all the different wacky leaves on it... the leaves range from 1 lobe to 5 on the same crazy fig:
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          At the moment, it's got about 400 main crop figs that will ripen probably in a month. Then it will do it again for an Oct crop (last year the last bunch ripened in Oct anyway). There's about 20 figs on every single branch big and small (rust made a lot of leaves fall off so you can see the figs better):
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          Does it look like your fig?? Yours is the ONLY fig pix I've seen that actually look exactly like my figs...
          Want: Marseilles Black, Col de Dame (any), figs that do great in zone 9b (new to figs, so no fig trades, but have other plant types)

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          • Rewton
            Rewton commented
            Editing a comment
            It does look a lot like the same fig (or closely related). Of course, mine would have to be considered an unknown too.

          • hstark
            hstark commented
            Editing a comment
            So maybe mine is a Persian fig too. It really doesn't look like any of the normal figs I've seen. And as I mentioned, I did not get it from a normal nursery, but an exotic plant nursery (read: guy who collected odd/rare plants and sold his extras).

        • #10
          Oh, my dog ate the rest of my brebas before they fully ripened too because they were all on the lower branches... I don't think I'm going to get to eat any of the lower figs. Does it look like a White Marseilles?? People thought LSU Gold, but I don't think the fruit looks right.
          Want: Marseilles Black, Col de Dame (any), figs that do great in zone 9b (new to figs, so no fig trades, but have other plant types)

          Comment


          • #11
            Well, last year was not a fluke. The Raasti N. Persian UNK fig is the earliest in my collection this year and began ripening its main crop today. The figs are very tasty like last year. It's definitely a very good honey fig that ripens it's main crop very early. Last year it ripened its first fig on July 28, the same date that Improved Celeste starting ripening. Both figs were grown in containers. No greenhouse was used, just the fig shuffle and I wasn't very aggressive with that. Unfortunately, a comparison with with IC is not possible this year because (due to a move) am starting over with a 1st year plant.
            Steve
            D-i-c-k-e-r-s-o-n, MD; zone 7a
            WL: Verdolino, Figue Jaune, Nantes Maroc, Lussheim

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            • #12
              How much will it go for on ebay?
              Bob C. KC, MO Zone 6a. Wanted: Martineca Rimada, Galicia Negra, Fioroni Ruvo, De La Reina - Pons, Tauro, BFF, Sefrawi, Sbayi, Mavra Sika , Fillaciano Bianco, Corynth, Souadi, Acciano Purple, LSU Tiger, LSU Red, Cajun Gold, BB-10 any great tasting fig

              Comment


              • Rewton
                Rewton commented
                Editing a comment
                At this point I wouldn't consider it a boutique fig taste-wise although it is still relatively young and is a little rootbound in its 5 gallon SIP. So it may get better. Currently, I would rate it on par with my other honey-type figs. The distinguishing feature is that it is very early so it should be spread around, I think. It would be interesting to see how it does in other areas.

            • #13
              Congratulations on your Raasti N. Persian UNK as your first main cropper this year.

              My first main crop fig is ripe today too: Improved Celeste, photoed here. (I'll wait to pick it when my father-in-law arrives later today.) The ant inspector, photoed on it, has been for me a good indicator of sweetness. First RDBs have begun to blush. I stunted my Florea some so it's behind where it should be I think.

              Letting this IC fig hang would allow the sugars to intensify, I realize, not a bad thing, though perhaps least worthwhile for this cultivar which is very sweet when fully ripe, sort of too bitingly much so because not counterbalanced by enough acid - no tart to temper the sugar. So it gets picked today. I expect a mild sweet or even fruity flavor.
              Tony WV 6b
              https://mountainfigs.net/

              Comment


              • Rewton
                Rewton commented
                Editing a comment
                That's pretty early for zone 6b. I am thinking it is growing in a container, correct? They look great - looking forward to IC figs next year.

              • mountainfigs
                mountainfigs commented
                Editing a comment
                Definitely in pot, embedded. Last year earliest main crop fig was also IC, on August 3rd. So this is my first main crop fig in July. Earliest in ground fig here was last year's Hardy Chicago, August 21. This year looks like an in-ground RDB and other Mt Etnas might ripen before that date. Your RNP UNK remains in pot, I assume?

            • #14
              Raasti Northern Persian Unk is my first to ripen a main crop fig this year. I have two, both 2nd year plants, one in a sunken pot and the winner, which I had trained to two trunks last year and put inground mid May and am training to a low cordon. The first main crop was yesterday, 8/6, and some other figs on this plant and many on the other are swelling and getting a little yellow color to them. Both of these were started on the fig shuffle early April (obviously I will not be able to do that with one of these next year). In comparison, last year my RdB in a pot gave the first fig on 8/12, the first for me, and still looks at least a week or so from ripening any figs. My Florea is a year older and my IC is the same age as these Raasti plants and were also both put in ground this year and are not close to ripe figs yet. This was very sweet and juicy, a honey type. It is a small fig, though the next ones ripening look a bit larger than the initial one.

              Picture of the figs on the espaliered plant:



              And the fig just prior to being enjoyed:



              Ed
              SW PA zone 6a

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              • zone5figger
                zone5figger commented
                Editing a comment
                Great report and exciting to verify the earliness of this variety!

            • #15
              Raasti Northern Persian Unk - this is a 'holdover' fig. I left a small fig about the size of a dime overwinter on this tree, stored where it would not get below freezing all winter. I don't know if you can call it a true breba. It is really last year's main crop, just real late. I picked this and ate it (well half to my wife) today and it was as good as any we had last season, very sweet, fine slight fig flavor. The main crop of this year are probably over a month away.

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              Attached Files
              Ed
              SW PA zone 6a

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              • mountainfigs
                mountainfigs commented
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                Very nice.

              • grasshopper
                grasshopper commented
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                Not easy to protect it for so long..

            • #16
              Looks good Ed! Mine are probably about 3-4 weeks away too. My tree was slowed down a bit by root pruning and transplanting.
              Steve
              D-i-c-k-e-r-s-o-n, MD; zone 7a
              WL: Verdolino, Figue Jaune, Nantes Maroc, Lussheim

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