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  • Ponte Tresa auction on Ebay, my introduction

    I am maimai2 , a new member of this forum

    After winning the 3 Ponte Tresa cuttings on Ebay, I was overwhelmed by the criticism and many poor judgment made by several people in the fig society worldwide . Was I paranoid about it ? Not at all . Truth be told, I never regret to have paid $541.00 for those 3 sticks of wood. I still think that I got a very good deal , because I was ready to pay at least $872.50 or more, if needed .

    13 hours before the auction ended, I predicted on a Viet forum (in HCM city) that this auction would end up more than $1,000.00 . I said that I might step in at the very last minute ....

    I have watched the listing since it first appeared on Ebay and I fell in love with it . Why ? As I have explained in another topic, love at first sight is hard to explain. I am an artist and I always follow my intuition; but most importantly, I trust the seller whom I have heard may compliments (about him) through some fig forums . I would bid with confidence that this item would not be a fake one .
    On the last day of the auction, when there were 7 minutes and 1 second left, I stepped in. Placed the bid at $628.50 but NOT confirmed it . Reason ? If I confirmed it, the price would fly high, out of control .

    At 4 minutes 8 seconds left, I changed the max to $ 872.50, but still NOT confirmed it .

    At 2 minutes 54 seconds left, the auction went up to $244.06, I was still holding my bid

    At 6 seconds left. auction raised to $510.00 . Here I came with max $872.50 . Of course, Harvey held the second place (he admitted it in F4F) because there was no time left for other bidders to go higher

    I WON . Does it worth $541.00 ? Definitely YES


    Auction (on Ebay or anywhere) is some sort of gambling . You should know how to keep the price the lowest possible for an item you really wanted . Once it soared too high, stop it. Otherwise, you would kill yourself and that is insane .

    Am I an expert on auction ?
    Please read an extract of my short story "As If No One There "
    The van was brought onto the auction floor that afternoon. More than a thousand people were present at the site, but no one bothered to bid when the auctioneer yelled out his call. The price began at ten thousand dollars and then slid rapidly down to five hundred dollars. The loud call rang out:
    “Five hundred.”
    Seizing the opportunity, I raised my hand above my head to signal that I accepted the price. Immediately, from his elevated post, the auctioneer raised the bidding price fifty dollars. His voice was melodious, stretchable like taffy, now up now down, now deep now high, like he was singing, “Five hundred fifty … five hundred fifty … five hundred fifty …”
    He repeated the three words continuously. All the while his head turned from side to side, eyes darting toward every single person in the room. Below, the baiters ran here and there, calling for more customers to join in the bidding.
    My face taut, I looked anxiously around me.
    A few minutes passed. And there, another hand rose. Jumping on the chance, the auctioneer pointed right at me, his voice now repeating urgently. “Six hundred, six hundred, six hundred …”
    I shook my head. His voice was insistent, not giving up. The baiters now surrounded me, cajoling. One of them said, “It’s so cheap, and the car has only twenty thousand miles! So cheap! So cheap!”
    Swayed, I hesitated for a moment then nodded. The buzzing hive immediately swarmed toward my opponent and attacked. “Six fifty, six fifty, six fifty …”
    All eyes were on him. Tougher than me, the man stayed quiet and did not budge. The auctioneer’s voice became shriller with every moment that passed. Meanwhile, the baiters scattered around the floor, inviting this person, pulling that person, to join the bid. Still, no one had any interest in competing with me.
    At last, realizing that he could not draw in anyone else, the auctioneer softened his voice and slowed down to emphasize each word.
    “Six hundred fifty, one time.
    “Six hundred fifty, two times …
    And, “Final time: SIX ... HUNDRED ... FIFTY.”

    No one on the floor moved. The sound of the wooden gavel hitting the table rang out like a shot. Pointing at me, the auctioneer stood tall on his wooden post and yelled into the microphone, “SOLD! Six hundred dollars.”
    I was dazed, half elated, half worried. Well, I had just bought an old buffalo. I wondered if this animal would let me ride it peacefully; me, singing along with a flute at sunset time,
    “La la la, who's said
    To herd a buffalo
    Is a hard job
    To do?

    Herding a buffalo
    An enjoyable show ...”

    Or would this old buffalo throw me to kingdom come?

    Last edited by maimai2; 12-16-2015, 10:12 AM.

  • #2
    Lovely--I've seen the critical posts, and I think they're somewhat offensive. Value, like beauty, is in the eye of the beholder. On a much smaller scale, the china pattern I started collecting years ago has now been discontinued and a single dinner plate now costs $115 (from $25). My husband thinks I'm crazy, but I still buy a piece every now and then because I love the pattern.

    Congratulations on your auction win, and good luck with the cuttings.
    Zone 7a in Virginia


    • #3
      Congratulations and welcome to the forum! Value is purely subjective--what is a diamond to one is merely a clear rock to another. I'm glad you won your diamond.
      Bryant...Franklin County, VA...Zone 7a. Wish List: a 32 hour day....more sleep


      • #4
        Congrats! People are saying critical things out of jealousy, they just wish they had such a beautiful fig! Pay no attention to them!

        Btw, I call first dibs when/if you decide to recoup some of your money with cuttings!


        • #5

          There will be no bashing of you here......we are all fig crazy and a very friendly group......except for Hershell, he is now on my B list headed toward C list.
          Cutting sales start Nov 1 at 9PM eastern time as always at willsfigs.com


          • #6
            Maimia, IMO, using an American anology, you stepped up to the plate and hit a home run. Congratulations! So long as your family is taking care of and not going hungry, good for you. After all it is your hard earned money.
            May you find the same happiness in this auction as you did in the van. Good luck and peace.
            Last edited by DaveL; 12-16-2015, 11:51 AM.
            Dave- Waterford, Ct. Zone 6a


            • #7
              Congrats on your purchase Mai! We are not going to question your purchase, its a beautiful fig and FMD has it in high regards. Cant wait to hear your progress growing it
              May the Figs be with you!


              • #8
                Yes, congratulations!


                • #9
                  Maimai! That was way too much! Way to much money. What were you thinking? But please don't ask how much I have spent on Figs in the past. You would think in insane and FMD is a great person to buy from. And I will probably be on Wills D list by the end of the day. Congratulations on your win!
                  Nothing in the world takes the place of growing citrus till figs come along. Ray City, Ga. Zone 8 b.


                  • #10
                    Maimai2, welcome to the Ourfigs fig forum! You don't have to explain yourself here. I do hope that you show off some nice fig pics.
                    Eatonton, GA zone 7b/8a


                    • #11
                      Maimai.. I have but ONE thing to say... GIRL I LIKE YOUR STYLE!!! LOL!
                      My Plant Inventory: https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets...HZcBjcsxMwQ7iY

                      Rooted Cuttings Available 2021:


                      • #12

                        Welcome to our figs forum community.

                        Congratulations and Good luck with the cuttings.
                        Pete R - Hudson Valley, NY - zone 5b


                        • #13
                          Maimai, welcome to the forum! I I have nothing but congratulations to offer on your new acquisition. It looked like you already had a first-class collection of fine and tasty figs, and now you have a crown jewel.
                          Bay Area, CA (zone: 9B)


                          • #14
                            Get those beauties growing Mai!!!

                            I very much understand folks on both sides of this, there's two sides to every coin. Having said that, I'm super happy for you. Your decision is the right one for you and your situation and I love that your plants will be so loved by you. Some people not in your shoes don't understand, but I'm glad you haven't let their comments detract from your score.

                            And I think that most can't see you and Frank exchanging the cuttings and cash as a bad thing...win/win. Again, congrats to both of you. Looking forward to hearing more about how these plants perform in different areas as they spread across the continent.

                            Glad to have you on the forum Mai
                            Greg, Maine, zone 5. Wish List: Green Michurinska


                            • #15
                              Welcome! You can tell from my posts on the subject I thought you got a bargain, too. Congratulations!
                              Bob C.
                              Kansas City, MO Z6


                              • #16
                                No hating here. I am jealous though. I wish I had one.

                                Maybe in a few years.
                                Don - OH Zone 6a Wish list: Zaffiro, Moro de Caneva, Nerucciolo d'Elba, Bordissot Blanca Negra, Rubado


                                • #17
                                  If I had the funds I would have many figs that I want, regardless of what people think. I'm glad you got it.


                                  • #18
                                    maimai2, I like your style and story. I pay extra for perceived value for old American-made guitars and vintage British motorcycles that then usually require some rebuilding. We all have our "thing." Congrats, welcome, and please keep us up with your progress rooting the cuttings and making trees out of them
                                    Phoenix, AZ
                                    Zone 9b
                                    Hot, mostly


                                    • #19
                                      I think in your situation you did the right thing for you! The seller has a great reputation and life is short. If you can afford it and you want it why not. I hope it does great for you and please let us know how you like the fruit. As for the nay sayers, send them a picture of you enjoying your fruit with a big smile


                                      • #20
                                        I'm not entirely sure why there is any hubbub about it, doesn't affect anyone but you and Frank. Your money, spend how you wish.

                                        Welcome to the forum!
                                        SE PA
                                        Zone 6


                                        • #21
                                          The PT cuttings arrive home today . Thank you, Frank for the extra one . Now what I will do next ? any suggestion from the experts of this forum ?


                                          • maimai2
                                            maimai2 commented
                                            Editing a comment
                                            How many trees will I get from these 4 cuttings , any guess ?

                                        • #22
                                          One thing I will tell you. This variety is unusually sensitive to water, much more so than other figs. I typically root in perlite in 2 - 4" wide plastic bags with a pinch of peat. Most varieties will root and when the roots hit the side of the bag they follow the inside edge of the bag. The roots following the bag walls typically stay healthy. With PT as soon as the roots started to touch the plastic they started to rot. As the plants mature the roots can handle something like pro-mix just like all the other varieties. It's just the early roots that are so sensitive.

                                          Then, once established in soil they need more fertilizer than most cuttings or growth stalls. At least that's my experience.

                                          If I had PT cuttings now I'd root them in perlite as before but I'd add a small amount of something with Glomus intraradices or Glomus mossea because I think those helped the PTs survive. Pro-mix with mycorrhizae has intraradices as do the Stamets products. I'd also use a wider bag or rigid container so the roots would get bigger before hitting the wall.

                                          Rob Ster 010 has more experience with successful PT rooting than anyone else, if memory serves. His cuttings may have been fresher than mine. Your cuttings should be as fresh as his were.
                                          Last edited by Harborseal; 12-17-2015, 06:28 PM.
                                          Bob C.
                                          Kansas City, MO Z6


                                          • maimai2
                                            maimai2 commented
                                            Editing a comment
                                            Thank you so much for your advice . . I will keep it in mind. So far nothing happens yet !

                                        • #23
                                          Ciao Maimai. Welcome to you new home and congratulation to you win of Frank trees! You will be very comfort here on Ourfig and hope to see you active....
                                          Zone 5 Chicago IL Wish list:
                                          1) Rest peacfully Amico Bello Buddy 👼🏼.
                                          2) This weeks ebay auctions.


                                          • #24
                                            Is it? All my PT's rooted with no problems whatsoever in the baggies. Last year they were among the first to root. I never noticed them being over sensitive to water.
                                            Rotterdam / the Netherlands.
                                            Zone 8B


                                            • Rob Ster 010
                                              Rob Ster 010 commented
                                              Editing a comment
                                              well, nothing out of the ordinary.
                                              Baggie new style method filled with 80% screened perlite and 20% screened seedling soil. No washing with sterile soap, no 10% bleach,no rooting hormones, just stick em in, water them and vaya con Dios!
                                              The only thing i do different from most people is that i root under 150 watt T-neons, last year i had a 90+% success rate and i think the light made all the difference.
                                              If you look how they root in commercial fig orchards in Spain, they just stick em in the ground and they'll root. And you cant switch the sun off, so they root in light.
                                              90% of the times your cuttings will break bud long before they show any roots. From this point on photosynthesis starts so it's really helpful to have some light from that point on.

                                            • maimai2
                                              maimai2 commented
                                              Editing a comment
                                              Thank you Rob. I think I am good at rooting cuttings (in different ways). . But with the amount of money that I have invested in this PT, I am a little bit nervous ....

                                            • Rewton
                                              Rewton commented
                                              Editing a comment
                                              In two cases I buried old thick wood with 2-3 nodes at a 45˚ angle (right side up) in a cup so that the top of the cutting was just under the soil surface. For the others I rooted in damp sphangum moss in 1 gallon bags then when roots were ~ 1/4 inch long I put into either cups or mini-SIPs. All the PT cuttings that I started using these various methods now have roots and leaves and should make it. Three other varieties started at the same time (total of 6 cuttings started in mid-October) all have roots in cups but only one has leafed out. So in my hands PT has been relatively easy to propagate.

                                          • #25
                                            My experience has been similar to that of Rob's. I am in the process of propagating four varieties from cuttings taken from mature trees. PT has by far been the easiest to propagate - all cuttings have taken and are doing well so far.
                                            D-i-c-k-e-r-s-o-n, MD; zone 7a
                                            WL: Nantes Maroc