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  • LSU Purple in the North?

    LSU Purple is known for taking a long time to develop flavor - even in the South. I was wondering if it ever does improve for northern growers? I've had mine since 2006 and it is so-so at best. If any northern growers are getting tasty figs, what are you doing, and how long did it take?

  • #2
    Mine is great, except not as productive as I would like it to be. I hope better positioning in sun will remedy that next year. Details here:
    http://www.ourfigs.com/forum/figs-ho...le-sugar-candy
    Tony WV 6b
    https://mountainfigs.net/

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    • #3
      Mine are definitely not candied - and I'd gladly settle for citrus. They aren't quite moist cardboard, but pretty much not "good". Edible maybe. I have other figs, and only taste those to see if they have improved.

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      • #4
        Something is wrong then. Pics could help ID potential problems. Is it rootbound? I suppose I would look there first.
        Tony WV 6b
        https://mountainfigs.net/

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        • #5
          Ohhh man, I just ordered a TC LSU Purple from Wellsprings just to give it a try because it sounds so good.. Im in Zone 6A in Eastern PA.. Lets get to the bottom of this & solve this issue ASAP! Lol
          My Plant Inventory: https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets...HZcBjcsxMwQ7iY

          Rooted Cuttings Available 2021:
          https://docs.google.com/document/d/1...fxsT1DuH8/edit

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          • #6
            Mountainfigs, your description of LSU Purple had definitely reassured me that I need to get one. In the mental wish list for now. See what this fall and winter holds for me I suppose. Wish I could help with the original issue fignut. Hopefully some others will chime in soon
            Bryan | Zone 7 NC

            Wish List: Takoma Violet, Kathleen Black, BM, Preto, CdD Grise and Noir, Ventura, Maltese Falcon and Maltese Beauty.

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            • #7
              Something does sound drastically wrong there fignut, every LSU Cultivar I've tried have achieved top marks. First, are you positive it an LSU Purple? Second, is it in ground or in a pot? Third, is it getting all micro and macro nutrients? And this is just the start, like Tony said, some pics will help.

              I'm sure I'll have fruit on my LSU Purple (PFTP) in the up coming season, so I guess I'll see how mine are for the trees first go round.
              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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              • #8
                Attached are photos of LSU Purple EL from 2014 and 2015. Its the same tree which is in its 2nd leaf and purchased from Edible Landscaping in early 2014... Last year The figs were almost bland but had good texture, this year they were mildly sweet with good texture and more flavor, I expect them to be sweeter and better next season

                Last year the tree was limited to 3 figs this season there were over 40 that were left to ripen which is an explanation for the difference in shape and size of the pictured figs.

                My LSU Purple PP (PTFP) produced good tasting figs (sweet) in its 2nd leaf, but was killed in winter storage. I also have an LSU Purple TC from wellsprings in its 2nd leaf that produced figs this year but none ripened before frost.
                You may only view thumbnails in this gallery. This gallery has 2 photos.
                Pete R - Hudson Valley, NY - zone 5b

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                • #9
                  LSU purple is one of my favorite figs although I do not qualify as a northern grower by any means. I just wanted to add that it's a good variety and that most likely something is wrong with that individual tree. I hope you get it all worked out fignut.

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                  • #10
                    Oh and by the way if you'd like to try a different one I have plenty of cuttings so let me know.

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                    • #11
                      I would second Scott's comment. I'm finding the biggest mix up in fig tree labels is not the eBay scammers but the large professional nurseries who should know better. Stark Brothers Nursery sent me a tree labeled LSU Purple which is a productive okay fig but NOT LSU Purple. The 4' tree they sent me labeled LSU Gold turned out to be LSU Purple. It's produced one caramel flavored sugar fig out of several good ones which hinted at the possibilities ahead. It's in a 5 gallon pot in full sun and is going in the ground this winter.
                      Mara, Southern California,
                      Climate Zone: 1990=9b 2012= 10a 2020=?

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                      • #12
                        Thanks for all the feedback. I agree, something is definitely wrong, but I don’t know if it is something I'm doing/not doing, or my climate.

                        I am sure that I have LSU Purple. I got it from James Robin in Louisiana and he is very reliable. Though I do understand how easy it is to make mistakes with fig cuttings - it's always a possibility, even with trusted sources.

                        Here are pictures of my LSU Purple.

                        Click image for larger version

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                        Click image for larger version

Name:	100_1120 LSU Purple interior 8-27-08 not quite ripe copy.jpg
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                        Almost all of my figs are in pots. The LSU Purple is in a 10 gallon pot and is a very vigorous plant. (There was speculation that it was nematode resistant because its roots grew faster than the nematodes could infect them, .) But I don’t think the problem is the tree being root bound. I don’t root prune every year, but the flavor hasn’t improved when the tree is root pruned. Also, I have other LSU figs, and some of those are even more vigorous than LSU Purple. LSU Gold and Tiger are incredible growers and I’m not having a problem with them, even though they are all pretty much treated the same. It’s possible that it’s a nutrient deficiency. That can show up in one variety and not others. Last year I had a problem with Neveralla figs having dry spots in the ripe figs. Almost every fig was affected - on multiple trees. Dry spots like that in other fruit are usually caused by a Boron deficiency, so I treated with Borax this spring, and didn’t have any dry spots this year. None of my other varieties had the problem even though they had the same care that the Neverallas did. I’m going to be adding Azomite to my pots next year to help with trace minerals.


                        But in the meantime, I’m wondering what experiences other Northern growers are having with this fig. If any Northern LSU Purples are good tasting - and how they are being grown. I appreciate you all sharing how it does in your areas. It seems that from at least WV south that it’s all good. I’m in RI and Pete’s experience is the closest to home. But I was optimistic that LSU was going to improve, too. The first ripe one I ever tasted was beautiful - and really bad - I spit it out as fast as I could. The next year they were much better, and I hoped they would continue to gradually improve, but that hasn’t happened. They are not bad - just not good. It's an intriguing idea that different clones could be involved in the taste difference. Thank you for the offer Chrisk, but I think I need to find out if any Northern growers are getting dynamite figs from LSU Purple - and what they are doing - and try that first.
                        Attached Files

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                        • Altadena Mara
                          Altadena Mara commented
                          Editing a comment
                          Your leaves don't look like LSU Purple. Check out the leaves on the F4F Varietal Information: http://figs4fun.com/Thumbnail_LSU_Purple.html

                          Even the most reliable of sources are often dependent on their sources, and their usually reliable sources can make mistakes. To err is human....
                          I've just had to go through this with my mislabeled trees. If it doesn't look like a duck or quack like a duck, it probably isn't a duck.

                      • #13
                        Hi fignut,
                        I was just wondering as I read what you had said about all the things you had to treat where their was different issues. I know you grow in pots but do you have holes in the bottom so they can grow into the ground every year. I was thinking that if you did they could seek out the things they needed from the ground. I was thinking about doing this next year with my potted trees.
                        Kentucky Zone 6b

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                        • #14
                          I do have a few rooted into the ground Erick, but most are on black weed mat or low benches. The LSU Purple is not rooted in, but I think I'll try that next year. Thank you for the idea.

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                          • #15
                            I was not expecting much from my LSU Purple based on that reputation for years until decent figs. About half of the 10 figs on my 2y old tree growing in a 5g SIP were actually quite sweet, others were more bland. I found that they looked ripe long before they were at their best, this one was better for me when left on the tree almost too long.
                            Ed
                            SW PA zone 6a

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                            • #16
                              Thanks Ed, that's helpful. I'll try leaving them longer next year. Neveralla is another fig that needs to be left much longer than usual. It has a reputation for being both delicious - and bland. The difference being if it is super-ripe - or just ripe.

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