Fig (Ficus Carica), For Figs With High Nutritional Value

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Fig (Ficus carica), for figs with high nutritional value

The fig tree is a fruit tree of great longevity, not very hardy, its branches not resistant to a cold descending under -10° C. This very beautiful tree is ornamental with its cut foliage, dark brilliant green and leaves up to 20 to 30 cm long, alternate, webbed and deeply lobed.

It has been cultivated in the Mediterranean basin since ancient times for its edible fruits: figs, not quite fruits. In fact, the inflorescence or sycone, forms a fleshy receptacle at the top of which there is a small opening, called the eye; the tiny unisexual flowers of the sycone turn into granular fruits that are what we think are seeds inside the fig. These are the fig wasps (Blastophaga psenes) that fertilize the flowers by growing inside. When cutting a branch or harvesting a fig, a white latex escapes that is quite caustic: besides, it was used to eradicate corns and warts.

Figs can be purple, green or white. Most fig trees are biferent, that is to say they give fruit in July and September, except in colder regions where they give in autumn. Other fig trees, fewer in number, are uniform and only fruit once in June.

They have an interesting nutritional value with a supply of vitamin B, fiber and minerals, especially potassium.

  • Family: Moraceae
  • Type: fruit tree
  • Origin: Afghanistan, Syria
  • seedling: no
  • cutting: Yes
  • Planting: spring
  • Harvest: June to November
  • Height: up to 10 m

Ideal soil and exposure for planting a fig tree in the garden

All soils are suitable for this tree, preferably draining, light and warm. However, the exposure must be sunny, warm and sheltered from winter icy winds.

Date of planting and cutting of the fig tree

The planting is done in spring, against a wall exposed to the south in cold region. Add well-decomposed compost and pebbles or sand to the bottom of the hole to improve drainage. Propagation is done by cutting branches in summer.

Advice of maintenance and culture of the fig tree

In hot climate, water abundantly as soon as the fruits start to grow. The size is essential to promote the branching, it is done at the end of the winter before the recovery of the buds.

  • See the file on the size of the fig tree

Harvesting, conservation and use of the fig

The fig does not ripen once it is picked. It is harvested at maturity (colored, flexible, detaching well) and is consumed quickly because it can not be kept more than two days in the refrigerator.

It is consumed raw, cooked, roasted, poached, accompanied with poultry, and also in jams, compotes, wines, fig alcohol or dried.

Diseases, pests and parasites of fig trees

Mosaic, gray rot, coral disease, and most importantly, the fig mealybug (Rusci Ceroplasts) and the fig blackfly (Lonchaea aristella) are pests of the fig tree.

Location and favorable association of the fig tree

The fig tree will be well against a sunny wall sheltered from the wind. It can also be planted in a large pot or tray to green a terrace.

Among the unified varieties, you will find 'Violet of sollies' with red flesh, 'Parisian' large flat fruits of slate blue color, 'Blanquette' with pink flesh...

The Bifer varieties are more numerous: 'Drop of gold' rustic and productive, with big golden fruits, 'Blanche d'Argenteuil', an old variety that is suitable in the colder regions where it will yield fruit than in September, as 'Osborn Prolific' cold-resistant with large yellow fruits with pink and sweet flesh, 'Madeleine of the two seasons' with smaller figs...

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Video: Health Benefits of Fig Leaves (Ficus Carica).

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