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  • And the winner is . . . .

    Edit: I decided to keep a running tally here of the date of the 1st fig to ripen for each variety. . . .

    1. Florea...............................08/18
    2. Ronde de Bordeaux.........08/19
    3. Malta Black.......................08/20
    4. Improved Celeste.............08/22
    5. Salem Dark......................08/23
    6. St Rita..............................08/26
    7. Danny's Delight................08/26
    8. Red Lebanese Bekaa......08/26


    ------------------------------------------------------------
    OP:

    Just a datapoint: The first main crop fig to ripen here, among ~60 varieties, is this Florea on a potted 2nd year tree. This fig started to show some color two days ago. If I can muster the patience, I'll wait a couple days to pick it:

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    Also in the race, but disqualified for jumping the starting gun, is this Jason's Unk Black Ischia (JUBI). This is a 1st year tree started from a cutting, courtesy of a generous forum friend. The cutting set a lot of fruit, most of which I picked off. I left this one fig just to see what it would become. Again, I'm trying for appropriate patience:

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    Last edited by jrdewhirst; 08-26-2019, 04:00 PM.
    Joe, Z6B, RI.

  • #2
    As you said to me earlier, "Wait for it..."
    “The best time to plant a tree was 20 years ago. The second best time is now.”
    – Source Unknown
    MA 5b/6a

    Comment


    • nevepo
      nevepo commented
      Editing a comment
      The color on that black ischia looks great. But wait for it to drop well before picking. I'm sure it will taste great.

  • #3
    Looks great Joe! My JUBI is in ground and is weeks behind. But I should get a few dozen if the weather stays this good...
    Ed
    SW PA zone 6a

    Comment


    • #4
      That Florea fig seems to have the neck of a breba but also seems too late for breba? Could be a curiosity of a main crop specimen, I suppose? Or some type of breba/main cross? I have a Kathleen's Black breba fig fruit that has yet to swell let alone ripen still.

      Fig ripening order here this year shows White Triana to be somewhat early. Next up, not picked yet, but Scott's Yellow has swelled and colored a good bit already.

      Florea
      RdB
      Improved Celeste
      Mt Etna
      Celeste (GC NOT)
      White Triana

      Until it fruited this week I had the Celeste labeled as Golden Celeste, having discarded all my regular Celestes here. But this GC turned out to be a regular Celeste, and with a ton of spring and early summer rain and clouds, then water hose, it hung onto all its figs and is fruiting rather than dropping as regular Celeste has done here in the past.
      Tony WV 6b
      https://mountainfigs.net/

      Comment


      • Mr.Figs
        Mr.Figs commented
        Editing a comment
        That Celeste knows you mean business!

      • jrdewhirst
        jrdewhirst commented
        Editing a comment
        Interesting question. I picked a few brebas off Florea trees; the last was roughly 2 weeks ago. So the timing is very late for a breba but right on schedule for the start of the main crop.

        But I had a similar thought, so I looked closely at this fig. Some observations:

        1. There are other figs that seem close to ripening at the leaf nodes 1-2 above and 1 below this one. All have a leaf at the node, indicating that these 3 figs and also the one in between that is ripening appear on current year's growth.

        2. Those other figs, which are unequivocally main crop (fruit & leaf), appear to have necks similar to the neck on the one that is ripening.

        The ripening fig is out of order -- there is another fig lower on the branch. The ripening fig also has no accompanying leaf -- somehow the leaf was knocked off or dropped off. I wonder if the loss off the leaf impacts the local hormones in such a way as to speed ripening.
        Last edited by jrdewhirst; 08-16-2019, 01:14 PM.

    • #5
      @moutainfigs -- Today I noticed a second Florea fig, starting to swell and color on the same tree, in the same second spot but on a different branch, with a leaf at that node. So it's clearly a main crop fig. My simple take-away is that Florea main crop is beginning.
      Joe, Z6B, RI.

      Comment


      • mountainfigs
        mountainfigs commented
        Editing a comment
        Yes, the timing is right. And fig fruit like fig leaves can be quite the shape-shifters.

      • jrdewhirst
        jrdewhirst commented
        Editing a comment
        Two other potted Floreas (I have 3) both now have main crop figs showing color.

    • #6
      Happy to hear that maincrop is starting to happen for you in zone 6b....meaning another month for me in 4b! Lol hoping for sooner though.
      Jesse in western Maine, zone 4/5
      Wishlist- earliest maincrop varieties

      Comment


      • jrdewhirst
        jrdewhirst commented
        Editing a comment
        Really. I'll root for only 2 weeks.

    • #7
      Our Florea has one that is almost ripe while we have been picking Improved Celeste and Ronde de Bordeaux and just started picking Chicago Hardy and MBVS and Makedonian Darks.
      WV Harpers Ferry Zone 6b

      Comment


      • #8
        Those are some beautiful figs Joe. Keep your will power going, it must be hard to hold yourself back!! Look forward to hearing how that Black Ischia fruit is! I have the UCD version coming next week.

        Comment


        • Mangoman
          Mangoman commented
          Editing a comment
          Now that ending cracked me up! I have never had Florea to know! LSU Purple is good but have not had enough for I unfortunately planted the two I have in ground which was a waste. I have been spoiled with Noire de Barbentane, CdDN, Cavaliere, WM#1, and many others. I hope those critters cut you some slack this year! I remember the hell they caused you before.

        • DrDraconian
          DrDraconian commented
          Editing a comment
          Just thought I would remind you, any cutting or plant you get of Ischia Black UCD is going to be pretty heavily infected with FMV. This is true whether you got it from a source located inside of CA or out. I know you have an aversion to plants you think might have FMV, and this one is guaranteed to have it. Like any other fig, if you water, fertilize, and get it to grow quickly (especially if grafted), it can be almost asymptomatic, but it will be infected.

        • Mangoman
          Mangoman commented
          Editing a comment
          DrDraconian Yes I am aware of that and a few more. If you have no other option, then that is a different situation. I actually changed my mind and didn't get it after all!

      • #9
        Yes, I am very familiar with it's inherent problems.

        Comment


        • #10
          I believe my very first to ripen main crop was LUV, but it got tore up by birds and was filled with ants when I found it.

          Comment


          • #11
            OK, the 2 days are up. Also the Florea seemed ripe. I'm not trying to start a stampede to grow Florea but it's a nice (not blow your socks off) fig. It's a forgiving variety, prolific, robust, cold hardy but also tolerant of pot culture. And best of all -- it's early.

            Re the discussion of how environment impacts color, note the two sides of the same fig. The dark side faced the sun in the south.

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            Flavor was good -- typical Florea -- sweet, maybe caramel. I asked my wife what it tasted like, and she said "Like a fig!"

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            Joe, Z6B, RI.

            Comment


            • UKE4U
              UKE4U commented
              Editing a comment
              jrdewhirst ... The more I read about Florea the more it hurts to have killed my cutting back in March. I lost more expensive sticks but some were not well suited for my area/zone anyway. One that I lost even needed a wasp, 🙄newbie mistake. I have checked figbid off and on to see if Florea was listed but have not seen many available. Not really into bidding, would rather trade, maybe cuttings this fall. I hope there is not a stampede. BTW your fig looks good and it is interesting what the sunny side can do. Thanks for sharing. 👍

          • #12
            And the runner up is Ronde de Bordeaux . . . .

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            Joe, Z6B, RI.

            Comment


            • #13
              2nd runner up (i.e., the 3rd earliest variety here) is a dark horse, so to speak: Malta Black.

              MB is living up to its reputation as one of the earliest Mt Etna-ish figs.

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              Joe, Z6B, RI.

              Comment


              • #14
                Is anyone tracking what type ripens when in what quantity and in what zipcode?
                Zone 6a/b - west of Boston
                Waiting for climate change to bump me to Zone 8

                Comment


                • geoesquivias
                  geoesquivias commented
                  Editing a comment
                  Some folks have their grow logs in the "Stickies". I think it would be interesting to map fig seasonality or fig variety by regional or suitability from the experiences of the members. There is a lot of information in the forum! That said, there is soooo much to read! I make maps for a living so if some folks want to collaborate on scraping and cleaning the data to make some pretty and informative maps I'm in!

              • #15
                Two additional notes for today:

                1. There was a tiny ripe Improved Celeste on a potted tree today. I'm not officially reporting it until I see a normal sized ripe fig. But beware that Improved Celeste is running right on the heels of Malta Black.

                2. There is color developing on a Florea fig on my in-ground tree. So that would put the in-ground tree roughly 5-7 days behind the three potted trees. That's not much!
                Joe, Z6B, RI.

                Comment


                • #16
                  Originally posted by jrdewhirst View Post
                  Two additional notes for today:

                  1. There was a tiny ripe Improved Celeste on a potted tree today. I'm not officially reporting it until I see a normal sized ripe fig. But beware that Improved Celeste is running right on the heels of Malta Black.

                  2. There is color developing on a Florea fig on my in-ground tree. So that would put the in-ground tree roughly 5-7 days behind the three potted trees. That's not much!
                  Is there a post for what trees 6b growers have planted in-ground?
                  Paul D. Zone 6b, Southern CT

                  Comment


                  • jrdewhirst
                    jrdewhirst commented
                    Editing a comment
                    Lots of them. But in general, they're killed to the ground unless winter protection is good.

                  • FigTreeJunkie
                    FigTreeJunkie commented
                    Editing a comment
                    Definitely need to protect in the winter. There is a woman in Chicago who has a 30' tall, 30' wide fig tree that produces figs for the whole neighborhood. Every fall, a number of people spend days to protect the tree (building a structure around it and insulating)

                • #17
                  Picked first figs from two additional varieties today, Improved Celeste and Salem Dark. Well, I actually picked 2 IC's and 3 SD's. One of the Salem Dark's was so ripe that it clearly could have been picked 1-2 days ago, but I just missed it.

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                  Joe, Z6B, RI.

                  Comment


                  • #18
                    As expected, Florea, Ronde de Bordeaux, and Improved Celeste ripened early. Malta Black started before IC, then Salem Dark started after. Today I found deep color on St Rita -- both on a potted plant (below top) and the in-ground plant (below bottom).

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                    These weren't quite ripe, but looked like they would be within 1-2 days.
                    Joe, Z6B, RI.

                    Comment


                    • #19
                      Today (08/26) I picked a 1st ripe fig from St Rita (as forecasted above) as well as from both Danny's Delight and Red Lebanese Bekaa. I expected Danny's to be fairly early because it seems to me to be very similar to Malta Black. But I was surprised by RLB, pictured below (two pix, same fig):

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                      Joe, Z6B, RI.

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                      • #20
                        Surprised how? It seems to be fairly early here as well.
                        Ed
                        SW PA zone 6a

                        Comment


                        • jrdewhirst
                          jrdewhirst commented
                          Editing a comment
                          Surprised due to my own ignorance or inattention, coupled with some prejudicial assumption? I was thinking -- without checking -- that RLBV is later. But when I looked back at my records from last year, I found that it started ripening on 8/25 -- precisely the same. So as you imply, I shouldn't have been surprised.

                      • #21
                        Norella next

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                        Joe, Z6B, RI.

                        Comment


                        • ginamcd
                          ginamcd commented
                          Editing a comment
                          Very nice! I've had three Norella ripen so far and they were darn good for the first few fruit off a first year tree.

                      • #22
                        As noted above, I decided to keep a running tally here of the date of the 1st fig to ripen for each variety. Evidently there's a limit on my ability to edit the OP, so I'm continuing the list here:

                        1. Florea...............................08/18
                        2. Ronde de Bordeaux.........08/19
                        3. Malta Black.......................08/20
                        4. Improved Celeste.............08/22
                        5. Salem Dark......................08/23
                        6. St Rita..............................08/26
                        7. Danny's Delight................08/26
                        8. Red Lebanese Bekaa......08/26
                        9. Norella.............................08/31
                        10. Black Greek.....................09/01
                        11. Black Bethlehem..............09/01
                        12. LSU Purple......................09/03
                        13. Sal's EL............................09/03
                        14. Smith................................09/03
                        15. Champagne.....................09/03
                        16. Neveralla.........................09/03

                        Two additional Mt Etna's ripened right after Norella -- Black Greek and Black Bethlehem. I didn't think that was worth more photos. Another ME is ready to ripen within a day or two -- an in-ground Sal's EL.

                        Apart from the Mt Etna's, next two varieties ready to ripen are LSU Purple and Smith. So as you can see, I've added the last three standings based on a little short-term forecasting.

                        Here's the LSU Purple today. It's a very pretty fig:

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                        Edit: On 09/03 morning, I picked a 1st Smith as well as a 1st LSU Purple, both ripe; and a squirrel picked the 1st Sal's EL. On 09/03 evening, I picked a 1st Champagne as well as a 1st Neveralla / Osborn Prolific. Details below.
                        Last edited by jrdewhirst; 09-03-2019, 05:34 PM.
                        Joe, Z6B, RI.

                        Comment


                        • eboone
                          eboone commented
                          Editing a comment
                          Lookin great Joe!
                          On your ripening order, which are in ground?

                          My list parallels yours quite a bit, some minor variance. I'm a little ahead for most plants.

                        • jrdewhirst
                          jrdewhirst commented
                          Editing a comment
                          Ed -- All are in pots except for Sal's EL, which is in-ground. But I have the following both in-ground and in pots: Florea, RdB, Improved Celeste, St Rita, Norella, LSU Purple. As noted in a separate thread, the in-ground trees for these varieties generally ripened only a few (0-3) days after the potted trees.

                          The one exception so far is RdB, which hasn't ripened in-gound and is therefore at least 2 weeks behind the potted daughter trees. From what I can see, Lattarula and Nero 600M seem behind as well.

                          On the other hand, most other varieties that I have both in pots and in ground (Nordland, MBvs, LSU Gold, O'Rourke, Paradiso, Hanc's BT, Laradek's EBT) seem to be running roughly even but I won't know for sure until they ripen.

                      • #23
                        Picked these this afternoon:

                        1. Champagne. This variety has given me fits in the past but I think I'm doing better with it this year. I'm very happy to have it ripening this early.

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                        2. Neveralla / Osborn Prolific. This variety is reportedly genetically different than all my other figs, and I haven't quite figured out how to manage it. It does live up to it's name -- it sets a lot of figs. But in my garden, it drops a lot too. And I have a hard time figuring out when it's ripe. The fig that I picked (see below) felt ripe -- and it fell off in my hand -- but it didn't look ripe. Nevertheless, the flesh was soft and sweet.

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                        Last edited by jrdewhirst; 09-04-2019, 05:32 PM.
                        Joe, Z6B, RI.

                        Comment


                        • #24
                          Today I picked a 1st fig on the Mt Etna, Natalina. Last year this was my earliest Mt Etna variety, roughly even with Salem Dark.

                          More important, I also picked one on Nero 600M. Also, the related variety Valle Negra has a fig that seems ~1 day away. I'm very happy to have these varieties ripening so early -- basically even with the later Mt Etna's.

                          Finally, in a hint of things to come, there is color on one fig on each of two in-ground varieties -- Nordland and Hanc's BT. I'll have to double-check but I did not notice color on my potted trees from these two varieties. There is also a hint of color on a potted Hative d'Argenteuil.

                          1. Florea...............................08/18
                          2. Ronde de Bordeaux.........08/19
                          3. Malta Black.......................08/20
                          4. Improved Celeste.............08/22
                          5. Salem Dark......................08/23
                          6. St Rita..............................08/26
                          7. Danny's Delight................08/26
                          8. Red Lebanese Bekaa......08/26
                          9. Norella.............................08/31
                          10. Black Greek.....................09/01
                          11. Black Bethlehem..............09/01
                          12. LSU Purple......................09/03
                          13. Sal's EL............................09/03
                          14. Smith................................09/03
                          15. Champagne.....................09/03
                          16. Neveralla.........................09/03
                          17. Natalina...........................09/04
                          18. Nero 600M.......................09/04
                          19. Valle Negra......................09/05
                          20. Marseilles Black vs..........09/05
                          21. Hanc's BT.........................09/06
                          22. Hative d'Argenteuil...........09/07
                          Last edited by jrdewhirst; 09-08-2019, 06:58 PM.
                          Joe, Z6B, RI.

                          Comment


                          • Slavi
                            Slavi commented
                            Editing a comment
                            And based on
                            1 test
                            2 early
                            3 productivity
                            You winner is?

                          • jrdewhirst
                            jrdewhirst commented
                            Editing a comment
                            Ronde de Bordeaux.

                        • #25
                          Well, today I picked and ate a 2nd ripe fig from Nero 600M and a 1st ripe fig from Valle Negra. Also (surprise!) I picked a very ripe fig from my in-ground Marseilles Black vs. I hadn't noticed the fig before, maybe because I was looking lower on the branch.

                          1. A representative Nero 600M, or maybe a little bigger than average, not the one I ate:

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                          2. Valle Negra:

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                          3. Marseilles Black vs:

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                          The list above has been updated to reflect.

                          p.s. The only Mt Etna names that have not yet ripened for me are (1) potted Takoma Violet, (2) potted ME Unknown, and (3) in-ground Hardy Chicago. FWIW, the first two seem to be consistently later than other ME varieties.

                          p.p.s. A varmint has evidently harvested what was going to be my first ripe Hanc's BT. I assume it was a deer because the fig, which was positioned ~2' off the ground, was completely gone and the stem was bitten cleanly through.
                          Last edited by jrdewhirst; 09-05-2019, 05:40 PM.
                          Joe, Z6B, RI.

                          Comment


                          • ginamcd
                            ginamcd commented
                            Editing a comment
                            I've been wondering about the coloring on the stagnant figs on my first year Valle Negra tree. Now I see it's normal! They certainly are the prettiest immature figs among all my trees this year!

                            And sorry about the Hanc's BT. Isn't archery season starting soon...?

                          • jrdewhirst
                            jrdewhirst commented
                            Editing a comment
                            10 days.
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