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  • Gene Hosey

    I've been searching the forums for more information on Mr. Hosey, does anyone know the story of his fig collection? Specifically, I was wondering if he shifted his inventory to a nursery in the area or if the collection is gone for good. I wonder what lucky person purchased his land!
    Zone 7a in Virginia

  • #2
    I don't know the background, but he got out of figs and moved to New England doing cattle or something.

    He sold parts of his collection to a couple f4f forum members, the rest was supposedly killed by the new owners of the house. Most of his collection lives on through us.
    https://www.figbid.com/Listing/Browse?Seller=Kelby
    SE PA
    Zone 6

    Comment


    • Rafaelissimmo
      Rafaelissimmo commented
      Editing a comment
      Its goats in upstate NY Kelby!

    • Kelby
      Kelby commented
      Editing a comment
      Well, at they are both cloven footed animals!

  • #3
    Oh my gosh, that's terrible that the new owners did that! 😕
    Zone 7a in Virginia

    Comment


    • #4
      He became a goat farmer. Michael in WV bought most of his stuff, I believe.
      My fig photos <> My fig cuttings (starts late January) <> My Youtube Videos

      Comment


      • Kelby
        Kelby commented
        Editing a comment
        Just regular Virginia

      • HarveyC
        HarveyC commented
        Editing a comment
        At least I didn't call goats cattle!

      • Kelby
        Kelby commented
        Editing a comment
        Touche!

    • #5
      He lived in DC and had a fig orchard in southern Maryland up to about 2001. He now lives in upstate NY. I gave him a Takoma Violet to grow up there in a pot but it is borderline up there for figs unless you have a green house. His orchard still exists, or at least the land does. Nearly all the fig trees have died and it is now overgrown with brambles and saplings. He was really kind to me when I was establishing my collection of trees and allowed me to get cuttings from many different varieties while the orchard was still mostly intact.
      Steve
      D-i-c-k-e-r-s-o-n, MD; zone 7a
      WL: Nantes Maroc

      Comment


      • Rewton
        Rewton commented
        Editing a comment
        Edit: the above post should read 2011, not 2001 - sorry for the typo.

    • #6
      With Gene's permission Byron did his best to collect & propagate variants collected from Gene's orchard. I
      am nor sure how successful Byron efforts were.

      Comment


      • #7
        Thank you for all of the responses!
        Zone 7a in Virginia

        Comment


        • #8
          As Paul mentioned above, with permission I did collect most of the varieties that he was growing at his orchard during the time of his transition. At this time I do not know the status of that orchard. He had amassed an impressive collection. I am not prepared for any level of distribution at this time although some have been shared to back up my collection. (that may change in the future) I'm purposely keeping most of them very small due to current space limitations. If you have not already searched this resource, I'd recommend going on the Internet Archive (Way Back Machine) and looking up the old URL http://www.eastcoastfigs.com/ and looking at the resources he had put together.

          Byron (Ingevald)
          Byron - Zone 6a - northeast KS

          Comment


          • ross
            ross commented
            Editing a comment
            Tried the way back machine, and couldn't find anything on the varieties he's growing. Did he have any lesser known standout varieties? Does anyone have a list of varieties he introduce to the community perhaps?

          • Rewton
            Rewton commented
            Editing a comment
            Try this link:
            https://web.archive.org/web/20130313.../orchlist.html

            Once it opens scroll down. That is not all of the varieties he had but it is a good sampling. As I noted in post #5 above the orchard is basically kaput except for a very small number of trees that are still hanging on as the forest slowly reclaims the land.

          • HarveyC
            HarveyC commented
            Editing a comment
            I backed up/recreated his pages in early 2014, maybe they can be hosted here?

        • #9
          I bought the trees at his house in DC. It was maybe 60 trees all told. The source Kathleen's Black is there along with a few in ground trees the new owner would not let me dig up. But with the exception of just 2 or 3 extras I bought everything I could.

          HarveyC I live in Virginia. thx mgg
          Last edited by mgginva; 04-08-2016, 09:49 AM.

          Comment


          • HarveyC
            HarveyC commented
            Editing a comment
            Yes, sorry for the mistake, Kelby already pointed that out. I need to reformat my brain to clear out some other garbage data.

          • mgginva
            mgginva commented
            Editing a comment
            HarveyC
            No problem. I find a small pressure washer works for me.

        • #10
          Kelby started a topic with a list of his figs.

          http://www.ourfigs.com/forum/figs-ho...e-hosey-s-figs
          Kevin (Eastern MA - Zone 5b/6a)

          Comment


          • #11
            Originally posted by mgginva View Post
            I bought the trees at his house in DC. It was maybe 60 trees all told. The source Kathleen's Black is there along with a few in ground trees the new owner would not let me dig up. But with the exception of just 2 or 3 extras I bought everything I could.

            HarveyC I live in Virginia. thx mgg
            You still haven't figured out what the mystery Gene Hosey Green fig you sent me is, Michael. I can't figure it out either. It doesn't appear to match up with any of Gene's figs on his old site, at least none with enough of a description to get a good idea about. It remains one of the few honey figs in my collection that I'll end up keeping along with LSU Gold, Atreano and maybe Beall. Right now the rest in that class and almost all my sugar figs are looking at purgatory as soon as the end of 2016 unless they show me something this year. That ought to cull about 30 from my collection and make my wife very happy.
            Neil
            Reno, 6b

            Comment


            • cis4elk
              cis4elk commented
              Editing a comment
              LOL,
              My wife keeps asking &quot; Why do we need 40 fig trees?&quot; I keep telling her &quot;..it's a process..&quot; which she doesn't understand. It's funny, nobody outside of the forums understand how hard it is to narrow a collection down to 20 keepers...So limiting!

            • mgginva
              mgginva commented
              Editing a comment
              Neil,
              Geeez we never talk any more and my memory has dropped that chunk of info right out - probably into a glass of tequila or on to my pillow. Can you refresh my memory? Pic.s would certainly help.
              thx,
              mgg

          • #12
            Neil, you mentioned beall fig. What about it do you like?

            Comment


            • Posturedoc
              Posturedoc commented
              Editing a comment
              It remains the sweetest fig I've eaten, or at least the sweetest fig that has a clean finish rather than a really dense, ball of sugar like you sometimes get with a super ripe Celeste or other sugar fig. It's not complex, but there's just something to it that appeals to me. I admit it's dropped in my honey + sugar fig rankings, but that's because it hasn't been very productive for me compared to the others I like, so I'm waffling on whether or not to keep it.

          • #13
            I went to Gene's old orchard today, I assume for the last time. Out of hundreds of varieties that were growing there around 2011-12 today I could only find about 8 figs that were just barely hanging on. Unfortunately, none were ones that I wanted to collect cuttings from. Nature has moved in very quickly and outcompeted the figs, starving them of light. That, and the cold winters and rodent damage finished off nearly all the figs. I did find one fig with a ripe breba on it and took pics. I believe it was an Aldo's. The breba was excellent. I don't have this variety but I do have another Sal'sC family so didn't bother getting cuttings.
            You may only view thumbnails in this gallery. This gallery has 4 photos.
            Steve
            D-i-c-k-e-r-s-o-n, MD; zone 7a
            WL: Nantes Maroc

            Comment


            • mountainfigs
              mountainfigs commented
              Editing a comment
              So can we conclude of this variety compared to the many others: a) more robust, b) planted in a more favorable spot, c) got lucky versus rodents, d) some or all of the preceding?

            • Rewton
              Rewton commented
              Editing a comment
              Yes, we can definitely conclude that it is more cold hardy than most. But I think a lot has to do with the spot it was planted in which drained well and for some reason wasn't overtaken as quickly by native shrubs/trees. I have Sicilian Red which is supposed to be a closely related fig in the same family. It is quite cold hardy too.

          • #14
            I wish it was the time of year for snipping I would like to have one of his figs just for the joy of saying this was from Gene's Nursery good bad or indifferent Of course I am not to the stage that I am culling figs from my collection and husband is not rolling his eyes back in his head. since I don't smoke, survived the 60's with my mental facilities intact, growing figs not too bad of an addiction. Where do we go for rehab.....Harvey's or Bass. LOL good story Steve but sad. For every wonderful discovered fig, we lose some wonderful trees to ignorance and neglect. Passing them on to one another like we do keeps memories alive. I only hope we continue to find young peeps and teach them about figs so they can continue our work.

            Comment


            • Rewton
              Rewton commented
              Editing a comment
              Yeah sorry I didn't have better news but orchards don't take care of themselves unfortunately. The good thing is that most of the varieties are being grown by various people in the fig community.

            • DBJohnson
              DBJohnson commented
              Editing a comment
              To that point (about orchards taking care of themselves), I've been reading lot about companion planting and permaculture. I'm having thoughts of making my place a big food forest with some open area set up as a fig orchard (no overstory).

            • mountainfigs
              mountainfigs commented
              Editing a comment
              Real value in a food forest, companion planting and so on. Can be quite an adventure. Some initial companion planting, small swales, chop and drop proving very effective here. Really helps battle and maximize the elements. A fun creative endeavor too.
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