Thursday, June 29, 2017

My Plant Journal: Figs

Olympian Fig plants on Amazon
Last week, at The Shack, I planted several trees and shrubs. One of those plants was a Fig. I am not familiar with Figs (other than the famous dancing Fig in the cookie commercials) and I am not an organized gardener. Due to those two things, I am recording the beginning of my Fig adventure here.

Why Figs?

I decided to plant a Fig for the simple reason that a friend loves the fruit and swears that I'll enjoy having the fresh figs. Recently, every time I follow recommendations about fruit (i.e. PawPaws) I have been thrilled with what has been recommended. Also, I want to plant a large variety of fruit on my land.  During this camping trip to The Shack, I was already planning on planting PawPaws, a Persimmon, and a Japanese Maple. I had plenty of room to plant other plants, so I grabbed up a little Fig plant at a local big box, home and garden store.

After all, there is no harm in giving Figs a try. My planting technique up there is a little bit like throwing one of each and seeing what sticks.

Olympian Fig Information

I had no idea there were so many varieties of Fig. Fortunately, what I blindly chose was an Olympian Fig. Now that I've studied a bit more about Fig varieties, I am pleased that I have the Olympian variety. If that goes well, I'd like to add a few other varieties just for fun. But for now, the Olympian Fig seems to be a good variety for my place in West Virginia for these reasons:

  • grows in a small, dwarf, habit
  • grows 4-8 feet
  • hardy to zone 6
  • self-pollinator (I don't need a second plant for pollination)
  • like PawPaws, Fig plants are reportedly deer resistant

My Olympian Fig

Since the Fig variety I chose is a dwarf variety, I planted it in what is to be my "flower bed".  Flower bed is stretching it - a very kind and gentle way to describe this area of my yard.

My land is steep and rocky land on a ridge in West Virginia. So far my "gardening" requires the use of a pickaxe. I apologize that the quality of lighting in this photo isn't the best. I had taken this photo while I was working at my plantings and headed back home to my apartment before taking a better photo.

I planted the Fig in this area - between the lilac bush and the rose bush. And I placed the little garden flag very close to the Fig. While some plants are listed as "deer resistant", we all know that deer really seem to find any leaf a delicious appetizer. I am hoping the fluttering of the flag will help keep the deer away.

What will I do with the figs - if I am successful at growing them? I will find ways to prepare them and I will share them with people who love them. As I do my research, I am finding that there are many people who enjoy eating them.

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  1. I love figs. I think you made a wise choice in what you are plating. The wildlife will love you.

    1. Thank you for your supportive comments. And yes, I think the wildlife will definitely be pleased with more fruit on the land.

  2. I'm trying to think of a good place to put a fig plant/tree in our yard. Love the idea of having one. My husband loves figs and I'm pretty sure that they do grow well around here. Ah, I'm picturing a spot off the end of the front porch that might be perfect. You're inspiring me, Dawn Rae!

    1. I've seen some folks who keep the figs in containers. That may be an option also. If you grow a fig, please let me know how it goes.

  3. When we brought our first house it had a massive fig tree out the front of the property - we didn't realize what it was at first and so the birds got to all the figs before we could!
    I should look at a dwarf variety in this house because I do like figs, I look forward to seeing how yours grows.

  4. How lucky for you that everything worked out as it should. I have never grown figs but do like them. I wish you every success and hope the deers leave your trees alone. I'm looking forward to updates.....

  5. In spite of the fact that the Fig Newton is my all time favorite cookie, I have never planted a fig plant, nor have I even tried eating just the fig. I can hardly wait to see if you like it! Nothing like discovering a new fruit to add to our diets.

  6. Wishing you success with your fig plant at the shack, and all your plantings to date. You are getting a good start to cultivating your land for edible fruits & vegetables. I look forward to future reports of your gardening on a mountain ridge! Excellent that you are keeping a gardening journal to follow your progress.