Fig

Fig

Scientific Name

Ficus carica L.

Arabic name(s)

At'Tin

English name(s)

Fig, Edible Fig

Botanic Description

Ficus carica L. is an important member of the genus Ficus. It is ordinarily deciduous and commonly referred to as “fig”. The common fig is a tree native to southwest Asia and the eastern Mediterranean, and it is one of the first plants that were cultivated by humans. The fig is an important harvest worldwide for its dry and fresh consumption. Fig trees are deciduous, fast growing, and spreading in habit, so that they tend to be greater in width than in height. Plants from cuttings or seed typically grow into single trunk trees with little training, but trees damaged by freeze or other injury may resprout from roots with multiple trunks. The wood of fig trees is low in density and breaks easily. Branches have a pithy interior. Latex, which is irritating to human skin, is produced from all broken plant structures. Tree height at maturity varies according to genotype and typically ranges from 3 to 10 m. Fig trees are very plastic in form and can be pruned to many shapes and remain productive.

Cultivars

- Adriano A superb flavor fig created by mutation. It's flavor is outstanding. Small, skin cracks when ripe and has light red stripes. - Adriana One of the best tasting figs from Italy. - Alma A high quality medium, yellow brownish, very sweet fig. Good for pots and cold resistant. - Ariane An outstanding flavored, medium to large, yellowish green fig from Portugal. Early heavy bearer. - Aldo An excellent large to medium reddish brown fig with two crops. - Barada An excellent large to medium green honey fig with two crops. - Atreano An outstanding flavored large greenish fig, Cold climate tolerant. - Bagalhouce The moonshine fig, from Pico, Azores. A small white fig, very sweet. - Barbillone A medium to large greenish violet fig, with very good quality with two crops. Brebas is large and juicy. - Barnachotte A lemon yellow skin, very sweet high quality fig. Good tree for growing in a pot. Bayenfeige Violetta A very good large reddish brown fig with two crops. Cold resistant to -20°C. - Beall An excellent medium to large purplish black fig. - Bêbera Branca A long whhitefig from Caniço, Madeira Island. - Bêbera Prêta A long black fig from Caniço, Madeira Island. Excellent. - Beneixama An excellent black top commercial fig withl 2 crops early. - Bianchi Guido A light green medium fig. Very sweet and tender. - Bifara (Italian Purple) A large sweet fig with strawberry pulp. Two crops annually. - Big Granata A large to very large fig with very good flavor. Two crops annually. - Black Jack A large purple black, high quality fig . Good pot plant. - Black Madeira Flat A large black fig from the Island of Madeira, Portugal. - Black Portugal A huge black fig. Very good flavor. - Black Marseilles A medium black fig with tender, very juicy, excellent flavor. - Lack Weeping A large, very sweet, and juicy fig. It's tree has weeping branches. - Blanche de Deux Saisons - Blanquette A very good, small, greenish yellow fig. - Brogiotto Nero (Briogiotto Fiorentino) A large reddish purple fig, more tolerant in cold weather than most. Very sweet, outstanding figs. - Brogiotto Bianco The king of all figs, a large flat white fig. Very short neck, skin cracks when ripe. Excellent quality, a delicate tasteful fig, a mix of honey surrounds the full pulp. - Brogiotto Nero Romano A super violet-purple fig with excellent flavor, very sweet and rich. A good pot plant. - Black Mission A purple black, huge, medium sweet, rich flavor fig. Quality is excellent - Brunswick A medium to large, reddish brown, sweet, rich flavor fig. - Capelas: It’s trees are slow growing and spreading, from St. Michael, Azores. One of the best figs in the North Hemisphere if planted in the ground. Good tree for growing in a pot. Fruit is large and of outstaning quality. Breba is huge. Very sweet even in cold weather. - Castanhal A medium, brown, very sweet fig from Caniço, Madeira Island. - Carne Doncella A very sweet, high quality, purplish black fig with 2 crops, very sweet. Early breba. - Col de Dame Blanche One of the best figs in our collection. A large white, very sweet, outstanding fig. - Col de Dame Grise A large purple gray fig of high quality. It's juicy and very sweet. - Col de Dame Noir A tasteful large black fig. Outstanding. - Colar A very large black, high quality fig with 2 crops. Rated the #1 commercially grown in Spain. - Conadria A large light greenish yellow fig. The eye is very tight and small. Average weight is 1.7 oz. Two crops. Very good fresh or dried with excellent flavor. - Corynth One of the best medium to large greenish yellow fig with two crops. High quality. - Doce An outstanding medium brownish fig from the Island of Madeira. - Deanna A large light greenish fig of high quality. - De Pacheco A very sweet, top commercial, high quality fig with 2 crops from Murcia. Early breba. - Dottato (Kadotta) A honey fig, medium to large, richly flavored, sweet and of excellent quality, especially if the weather is hot. - Duamane Nera A great tasting large, dark fig. - English Brown Turkey ( Laradek) An excellent flavored large fig, very hardy, -28c, from the Czech Republic. - Early White A medium to large, greenish yellow very sweet fig . Two crops. The earliest to ripe fig is good to plant in pot. - Excel: A medium to large sized yellow fig with amber pulp, very sweet and is highly resistant to splitting. A good, well-adapted tree to grow in Canada. Seems to be very hardy. Superb flavor. - Fannick's Fig A extra-large, blue, fig. Excellent. - Fico Santo Large round, greenish, red inside, very sweet fig from Italy. Top quality. - Fioroni Umbrella A large, long very sweet brownish fig. - Falicciano A medium to large fig from Italy. Light green. Very sweet. - Flanders A richly flavored, amber pulp, heavy bearer, super fig. - Fracazzano(Bianco): A lemon yellow, very sweet outstanding fig from Italy. - Fracazzano Nero A large, black, superior fig. Outstanding taste. - Fracazzano Sguro An excellent green reddish fig. two crops. - Genovese Nero: One of the very best with a special delicate taste and very juicy, you can almost eat with a spoon. Large to very large dark purple fig. It has two crops. Hardy in cold climate, it is a very good producer and a good pot plant. - Genovese Bianco A delicious yellowish fig with two crops. High quality. - Gillete A large yellow, quite sweet and very heavy bearer. Two crops. The frost never seems to injure the crop. - Gomera An excellent medium reddish brown fig from Gomera Island. - Gordal A very large, reddish, honey type fig from Spain. - Grise Olivette A very tasty, large, bluish fig from France. - Grise Saint Jean An excellent dark, small to medium fig. It's a heavy bearer with 2 crops. - Hardy Chicago A light reddish brown fig with very good flavor. Very good grower in Canada. - Hollier A very light green medium to large fig which rips even in cold weather. Sweet and excellent flavor. Good in cold climate. - Inoral A medium to large, honey fig from Spain. Very taste. - Inoral Temprana An early season , medium to large, very sweet (honey) fig from Spain - Ischia Black An outstanding, small to medium, black fig. - Isfahan A small, yellowish brown, very tasty, cold resistant fig from Iran. - Italiano A medium purple, pyriform, red flesh, of high quality, rich and sweet flavored fig. - Jurupa A huge green fig with excellent flavor. Very vigorous grower. - Kala Heera/Ghosh A rare super fig origin in Middle East. - Karachi Green A very sweet, early and prolific fig. - Kori Gol A heavy bearer, medium to large, white fig. Very good. - King: The best to grow in a north climate like Canada. It's a super fig medium to large greenish yellow, of high quality with strawberry pulp. - K- 6-5 A yellllow redish, super sweet, like jam fig. - K - 7-11 A high quality large greenish yellow fig. - Lampeira A rare fig from Portugal. - Lattarulla (Italian Honey Fig): A medium, light green fig. two crops. Second crop is flavor rich and sweet. Adapts well to container, - Los Lunas A medium to large green fig. Very good. - LSU Gold A very dependable, huge flat gold fig. Tender and exceptionally sweet. - LSU Purple A Very rigorous grower. Red to dark large fig with excellent flavor and high sugar content. Cold resistant and a good pot plant. - Mademoiselle de deux Saisons An excellent, yellow-reddish, juicy fig. Good for colder climate (-13°c). - Magnolia Malta (Sugar Fig) Small to medium fig with light brown to violet skin and strawberry pulp. Very cold hardy. Excellent fig of high quality. Excellent to cultivate in Canada. - Martineca De Cartagena A large elongated greenish yellow, very sweet fig. Early in season. - Marylane Seedless An outstanding seedless white fig with very sweet and excellent flavor. Rated high quality. It's size is from medium to large. - Maximino An excellent purplish black fig with early season and 2 crops. - Melanzana A rich flavor, super quality, reddish brown large fig from Italy. Its tree is very vigorous. - Longue d’Aout: A medium to large, green (flush violet), good quality, rich in flavor with tow crops. A lot of brebas. Ripes two weeks earlier and is sweeter than Melanzana. - Mollar Blanca A very sweet and tender white fig with 2 crops and an early season. - Monstreuse An excellent, medium to large, green-reddish fig with two crops. - Moscatel Branco A medium to large, greenish white fig with very good honey flavor. - Napolitana Blanca A medium to large, greenish white fig with very good honey flavor. Two crops and early producer. - Napolitana Negra An extra-large, black fig well known from Spain with outstanding flavor. - Native d'Argentieull An excellent quality, small violet fig. - Negra Murcianna A very good honey flavored, large black fig. - Negretta A very sweet, small black fig. - Nero(B.C.) An excellent bluish black fig. - Neveralla(Archipel): A large, very sweet, greenish purple to violet brown fig. It's slow growing but tree bears fruit heavily. - Northland (Nordland Bergfeige) A sweet, reddish very rare, cold hardy variety fig from Switzerland. Excellent for cold climate. On a protected area, it can stand the temperature of -10°c to -14°c. - Pajarera A very sweet, medium fig with great flavor, known as the bird fig. - Palito An outstanding large white flat fig from Portugal. - Panachee (Tiger) A small to medium fig with yellow stripes on the skin and stem. One of the best tasting figs, with a berry taste. It's a conversation piece.( I have a tree with 3 branches with green figs and 3 branches with yellow and greeenstripes.) - Paneta A very sweet green fig with 2 crops and early producer. - Paradiso Bianco: An excellent, cold resistant, juicy green medium to large fig. - Paradiso Nero: A brownish red medium to large fig. Second crop has excellent flavor. Good pot plant. - Pasquale (Vernino) A very heavy cropper with small dark purplish black figs. Delicious, sweet flavor, late to mature. Not hardy. - Pastiliere(Hirta du Japon) A medium to very large red purple fig from Japan, good pot plant. - Peter's Honey A medium, very sweet, lemon yellow fig. Good tree for growing in a pot. - Petite Negri A good flavorfully medium to large black fig .Good to plant in pot. - Petrelli A very sweet white fig with very large brebas. Medium main crop. It's the same as San Giovanni but rips 2 weeks early. - Pezon Largo A very sweet and early purplish black figs, elongated, with 2 crops. - Pied de Bouef A large greenish ti to light brown fig, has two crops. Early ripe and a lot of breba. - Pingo de Mel #1 A small greenish fig, high quality, very sweet honey fig from Portugal. - Pingo de Mel #2 A large to very large white fig, high quality, honey fig from Portugal. - Pope's Portuguese East Mountain: An excellent cold resistant, medium black fig - Qila Saif An outstanding medium large, brownish mahogany fig. - Qeue Longue: A black fig from Italy. - Ravin de Calce: A black medium fig from France. - Reina de Malaga (Queen of Malaga): An outstanding, high quality green purplish fig with 2 crops. Early breba. - Rojeta A very sweet and tasty reddish large fig. Very good brebas and large second crop. - Ronde de Bordeaux An excellent flavor, small, dark blue fig. Better than Violette de Bordeaux. Very sweet and cold resistant. - Rusa A very sweet white fig from Russia. Early breba. - Sal's (Corleone) A small to medium black fig, good flavor and very hardy. Good for colder climates. - San Français A gray brownish fig with only one crop. - San Giovanni A very sweet white fig with very large brebas. Medium main crop. - São João Preto An outstanding flavored large black fig from Portugal. Lots of brebas. - Santa Cruz Dark A very good, special taste, dark large fig. Brebas only. - Sierra An improved Calamyrna fig, a medium to large yellow greenish fig of high quality. - Skardu Dark A hardy dark fig from Pakistan. Good for cold climates,-10°c/-14°c - Stella: An outstanding large, green, honey fig. It's cold resistant. - Sultane: A medium to large good quality black bluish fig. Very prolific and cold resistant. - Sucre Verte (Queen): An outstanding medium greenish, honey type fig. - Sucrete (Bifere): A small green fig of excellent quality. The fruit is not very aesthetic, but has two crops and is a good pot plant. - Tena (Bifere): A small to medium green yellowish early fig. It's very sweet and of high quality. Cold resistance to -14C degrees. - Ventura: A medium to large flat green fig with excellent strawberry flavor. It's harder than most trees. It's very good in cold climates like Canada. High quality category. - Turca 2: A greenish, very sweet fig. Early brebas. - Verdal Valenciana: A very sweet green fig. Early breba. - Verdale Longue: very tasty, green reddish, medium to large fig. - Verde Passo: A very sweet greenish blue fig. It's outstanding when it shrives. - Verdeja: An excellent green fig, Early brebas . - Verdone (Adriatic): An older cultivar that produces a large, sweet, rich, green yellow, very fine flavor fig. two crops annually. High quality category from Italy. - Vern's Brown Turkey: A good quality, large brown fig. - Verte: A small green fig with excellent flavor from Spain. One of the best figs to grow in Canada. High quality. - Violette de Bordeaux: A small, super, jet black fig from Spain, considered by many to be the very best tasting fig. It's very hardy, good for cold climates. Two crops. It's highly productive in pots. Dwarf and prolific. - Vista Mission: A high quality, large, purplish black fig. - White Texas Everbearing: A medium to large, extraordinary sweet and flavorful fig. It's very productive and hardy. A seedling that was discovered in a Celeste fig orchard near Austin Texas. It's a smudgy-amber colored fig with solid gold pulp. - Wuhan: A unique fig from China with horizontal, weeping growth. - Zingarella: A high quality fig. - Zuchini: A very sweet, long green fig.

Planting time

October to March

Soil requirements

Soil should consists of one- third peat- based pot ting mix, one third composted manure, and one -third com post, with some added perlite dolomitic limestone, and vermiculite. Repot every three to five years, drilling extra drainage holes along the bottom couple of inches of the pot.

Temperature requirements

Fig is especially well adapted to Mediterranean environments, with cool winters and hot, dry summers, but can be grown in more humid regions, including the tropics and subtropics, where they will experience more fruit splitting and disease.

Water requirements

During the summer, potted figs require lots of water, but when dormant or growing slowly, over watering are the most common cause for failure. If water doesn’t soak into a root-bound pot, insert a large nail into the soil, then fill the resulting hole with sand, providing a channel for water to enter the soil.

Flowering

Wild figs produce both functional male and female flowers within the syconium. Fruiting cultivars produce functional female flowers with abortive hermaphroditic flowers ringing the ostiole (Beck and Lord, 1988), but vary in their need for pollination.

Fruiting

Fig’s "fruit" is technically a synconium: a fleshy, hollow receptacle with a small opening at the apex partly closed by small scales. This synconium may be obovoid, turbinate, or pear-shaped, 1 to 4 inches long, and varies in color from yellowish-green to coppery, bronze, or dark-purple. Tiny flowers are massed on the inside wall. In the case of the common fig the flowers are all female and need no pollination.

Tree management

Pruning

Fig trees are productive with or without heavy pruning. It is essential only during the initial years. Trees should be trained with a low crown for fig collection and to avoid trunk-breaking limb weight. Since the crop is borne on terminals of previous year's wood, once the tree form is established, avoid heavy winter pruning, which causes loss of the following year's crop. It is better to prune immediately after the main crop is harvested, or with late-ripening cultivars, summer prune half the branches and prune the remainder the following summer.

Yield

fig shape is usually obovoid, turbinate or pear-shaped, its size may range from 2.5 to 10 cm in length, fig fruit color varies depending on the cultivar; some of the typical colors of matured fruit are yellow, green-yellow, copper color, red and purple, the skin is tender and thin, and the wall of the syconium is fleshy and either pale yellow, amber, light pink, red or purple (Morton, 2000)

Other Notes

Fig tree plantations cover 426.244 hectare area worldwide with an overall yield of 1.070.676 million tones. The largest fig producing countries are Turkey, Egypt, Iran, Greece and Algeria (FAOSTAT, 2006) The planting of the species occurs predominantly with vegetatively propagated plants, especially by the rooting of cuttings. This fact contributes significantly to the dissemination of pathogens which affect the yield potential of the crop.

References

• Condit I. 1932. The structure and development of flowers in Ficus carica L. Hilgardia 6(14):443-481. DOI:10.3733/hilg.v06n14p443 • Stover, E., Aradhya, M., Ferguson, L., & Crisosto, C. H. (2007). The fig: overview of an ancient fruit. HortScience, 42(5), 1083-1087.‏ • http:// www.adrianosfigtrees.com/varieties.html

Arboretum Database