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Back in May of 2014 the grandkids and I planted some fig trees. They did not make it through the summer of 2015.


This past weekend my girlfriend and I planted 2 nectarine trees and 2 fig trees.


The new trees have a larger root system than the original trees. Hopefully I can keep them watered enough to keep them alive this summer.

I ended up buying a brown turkey fig and a celeste fig. Not sure of the nectarine tree types.

While planting the trees we used miracle grow potting soil and 10-10-10 fertilizer mixed in. About a half gallon of water was applied to each tree while planting.
 
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The problem with potting soil is its too light and drys out too quickly even in the ground. You should be able to grow many types of Figs in Texas.
I'm in Va. and the last 2 years in a row my figs froze to the ground. They come back but there is no first "breba" crop which is born on the old wood. When they freeze to the ground the new growth gets a late start and the second main crop is also late and much of it doesn't ripen. I have about 15 figs in my yard. When they don't freeze we get figs from June to Nov. I have tried to get a variety so they come off at different times. I had planned to sell some because fresh figs can't be found for sale here. I have not sold any though because we are a large family.
I'm not sure how they would work in your growth zone but I suggest you look into Oriental Persimmons. When the damned squirrels leave my tree alone I get 80 to 100 tomato sized persimmons on a tree only 6' tall and a few years old.
We covered 5 of the figs a few days ago when the temp dropped to 12 degrees. 10 degrees was predicted. I put my wood stove ash clean out bucket with hot ashes in it near a 6th tree. I hope we don't have a total loss again this Winter. So far I think we have not.
 

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I'm not sure how they would work in your growth zone but I suggest you look into Oriental Persimmons. When the damned squirrels leave my tree alone I get 80 to 100 tomato sized persimmons on a tree only 6' tall and a few years old.
In zone 8b NW FL persimmons do well. East texas does in the most southern areas go up to at least Zone 9 which I think is fine for persimmons, but I am not sure. Just fruits and exotics lists Persimmons to zone 9. I can grow persimmons, but not figs. It is not the climate, it is what ever I am doing or not doing. My friends grow figs just fine, but I think it is my soil and I am told that a lot of compost would help. There is a .22 in the future for my squirrel population. I shoot them over a baited squirrel feeder. For raccoons and possums I hope my dogs will keep them out of the persimmon trees.
 

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kev, sometimes tree roots will not get well established if the soil in the planting hole is really rich. The roots won't reach out past the potting soil, and tend to remain in the pot-like environment. If you do add potting soil, make sure there is a gradual transition with no layers. Dig deep enough for good drainage and to loosen any soil compaction.

Also, young trees need a little extra water until they are established.
 

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Are figs sensitive to hot temps?

Maybe they need part-shade.
Friends in southern Louisiana and Mississippi grow them and so do neighbors that are near me in NW FL. They generally have problems in extremely cold places. There is a Chicago fig that is stated to survive from Zone Range 5 - 10. Stark Brothers states
Regardless of how or where you grow them, these trees are typically heat-tolerant, drought-tolerant, hardy and low-maintenance
 

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Kev, I have several mature figs, and I agree that the miracle gro will dry out quickly. In east Tx (you are not too far from where I am in the Big Thicket) figs really don't need amended soil. The soil in your video looks typical of east Tx, sandy loam probably with deep clay. I hate to suggest it, but you might consider taking the trees up and simply planting them in the native soil, without amendments. The native soil will stay moist longer and doesn't have peat in it, which once it dries out is hard to re-wet.

Figs really aren't massive feeders either, they're not like peach, pear, plum or other fruits that require regular fertilization. Figs originated in Western Asia and the edible fig Ficus carica especially in the middle east and mediterrenean where soils are sandy and somewhat poor.

I basically never feed mine except when I feed the lawn a couple times a year with a hose end sprayer, I'll spray around the trees. Some experts recommend raking leaves up under the trees in the fall and letting them settle and turn to compost for nutrition. I do that with oak leaves. In the wild, that's pretty much what happens with their leaves anyway.

One last suggestion---1/2 gal. water at planting time isn't enough. The surrounding soil will absorb most of that water. When you plant, you should fill the hole with water first, let it all soak in, and then put in your tree and back fill with soil and then water again. And in hot or windy weather (the breezy, windy, low humidity weather we've been having the last few weeks has been horrible in drying things out) you may need to water every day.

Just my suggestions. I've been growing figs for many years and had what was at the time one of the largest collection of edible fig varieties in the state. I had 67 separate and distinct varieties growing and all but about six were mature and fruiting. Unfortunately, the drought of 2010-2013 coincided with me being in an accident that caused severe injuries and I was not able to take care of the orchard and lost quite a few.

Of all of them, I never planted any in amended soil unless it was in order to make the soil more porous by adding sharp sand for a few varieties that were native to Afghanistan, Iraq and that general area and which needed immediate drainage the way olive trees do.

Anyway, just my suggestions.
 

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Friends in southern Louisiana and Mississippi grow them and so do neighbors that are near me in NW FL. They generally have problems in extremely cold places. There is a Chicago fig that is stated to survive from Zone Range 5 - 10. Stark Brothers states
I have a bunch of fig trees and last summer I attended a workshop presented by a guy that got a NRCS grant to study commercial fig production here in Maine [zone 4/5]. They had found a nursery in NH that stocks over 40 varieties of figs.

So I am familiar with growing figs here. But I was curious about how they handle heat, maybe they need a lot more water.
 

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I have a bunch of fig trees and last summer I attended a workshop presented by a guy that got a NRCS grant to study commercial fig production here in Maine [zone 4/5]. They had found a nursery in NH that stocks over 40 varieties of figs.

So I am familiar with growing figs here. But I was curious about how they handle heat, maybe they need a lot more water.
I am wondering about the water thing, maybe to much much water could be my problem. I am on a hill with a hard pan and we get about 60 inches of rain. Maybe planting figs on compost constructed mounds might be better relative to possible water logs soil.
 

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gophers like fig roots. I had to put chicken wire cages in the ground to protect the roots. I trap gophers constantly. I dress the ground around all my fruit trees each fall with llama manure and again in spring once the blossoms fall. I use a drip system on my trees with a fan sprayer on the larger trees. My only problem is gophers. My traps and cats work overtime but still have problems.
 

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I have zero experience growing in TX. I always use root stimulator when planting new trees shrubs and have had excellent results for many years. I always dig out and down(The deeper the roots the better) twice the size of the pot size.

I would use a DIY bucket or bag to hold more water and release longer in the heat.

I did find this:

http://aggie-horticulture.tamu.edu/fruit-nut/files/2010/10/figs.pdf
 

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gophers like fig roots. I had to put chicken wire cages in the ground to protect the roots. I trap gophers constantly. I dress the ground around all my fruit trees each fall with llama manure and again in spring once the blossoms fall. I use a drip system on my trees with a fan sprayer on the larger trees. My only problem is gophers. My traps and cats work overtime but still have problems.
wonder if they would like strangler fig roots as well?
 

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Figs are drought tolerant shrubs/trees that thrive in dry and sunny areas, with deep and healthy soil.

They thrive here... I believe California produces most of the fresh and dried figs in the nation.

Cooler weather will slow potential... both growth and harvests.
"King" would be a good choice for cool cultivation.

I cultivate "black mission", and "calimyrna".
 

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LeftCoastGrower, do you mean 'Desert King', which is currently being sold by Dave Wilson Nursery as simply 'King'? If so, this variety is not particularly well adapted to hot, humid southeast Texas. Desert King/King (light skin, pink flesh, closed eye then semi open later in the season) is more adapted to cooler coastal climates like California, Oregon, etc.

It did not do well here and was one I culled out years ago. The fruit would split badly in high rainfall and the eye tended to be semi open which allows tiny insects---can't think of the proper name right now-- to enter the fruit and cause it to sour and ferment.

Varieties with closed eyes that tolerate high temps do best here. There isn't much cool season fruit setting here because sometimes the main crop (not the breba) sets late enough that it freezes off the tree before it ripens. A few of the Italian varieties do that.
 

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The "king" I am thinking about is a cross between "desert king" and "Chicago hardy".
I've heard it called "Chicago king"

Cold weather and humidity are huge negatives for most varieties in general.
Figs follow much of the same care and feed as date trees.

Too much water, or a large influx in irrigation will "balloon" the flesh and rip open the skin.

Mold, rot, and blight are most common ailments.
Mites and june beatles are the bugs that attack most.
 

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I can't see the videos....

Ditto on needing to water more... And not replacing the soil in the planting hole. The extension service tells us that replacing the soil, or adding arganics to the planting hole in clay.... Means that the soil in the hole stays muddy all winter, and is the first thing to dry out in summer.... Plus the difficulty of being able to send roots into the native soil.... Far better to just turn a large patch of soil... And top dress with a bunch of organic material.

When I can use the hose.... I water all the soil will hold. When limited to buckets of rainwater... I still give at least a bucket (5 gal) of water per tree... In the winter while the soil is moist, and it's raining a lot.... I just transplanted a buncha Osage orange last week...

Kev.... What is your soil like?

In my area, figs do very well in clay. At my house in the sand hills, the figs do poorly. I've gotten fruit, but very little of it.... And the trees are stunted...
 

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LeftCoastGrower, I can't say I've ever had issues with mold or blight on my figs, even in my high humity area. Rust is endemic but usually only shows up late summer/early fall anyway and has no effect on fruiting. But molds or blights, I've never had here. Maybe it's a regional thing?

I've also not had an issue with mites on the foliage, or june beetles (june bugs?) on the trees, and I don't spray them with anything.

I wonder if the soil/climate is that different where you are from where I am that would cause mold, mites and june beetles to bother the trees?

STON3, if your trees are stunted on sandy soil, dig up some of the roots and you'll likely find knots on the roots from root knot nematodes. They're the bane of figs on sandy soil. About all you can do is grow varieties that aren't bothered too much by rkn.
 

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TxHannah; said:
STON3, if your trees are stunted on sandy soil, dig up some of the roots and you'll likely find knots on the roots from root knot nematodes. They're the bane of figs on sandy soil. About all you can do is grow varieties that aren't bothered too much by rkn.
Actually... This sounds likely... Plenty of those...
Any suggestions.... Re varieties?

I've not actually purchased fig trees... Just dug rooted cuttings from people I garden for...

It's so difficult to grow anything in the Sandhills, that I'd rather not waste good money on stuff that doesn't have a chance of survival.
 

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LeftCoastGrower, I can't say I've ever had issues with mold or blight on my figs, even in my high humity area. Rust is endemic but usually only shows up late summer/early fall anyway and has no effect on fruiting. But molds or blights, I've never had here. Maybe it's a regional thing?

I've also not had an issue with mites on the foliage, or june beetles (june bugs?) on the trees, and I don't spray them with anything.

I wonder if the soil/climate is that different where you are from where I am that would cause mold, mites and june beetles to bother the trees
A fig grower in the next valley has those problems.
He grows "brown turkey" and the tiny "black jack".
It's the black jack that seems immune deficient. Maybe a problem with the strain.

I keep the beds under the canopies thick and nutrient filled, and prune as needed.
I think just keeping it clean and healthy keeps the trees happy.
That and a bunch of hens roaming about, keeping any bugs at bay...
 
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