The Q&A Archives: Peter's Honey Tree

Question: To Whom It May Concern,
I have been trying for the past month to get information about a fig tree that I purchased from Civano Nursery in Tucson, Arizona that was supplied by your company. No one at this store has been able to supply me answers.

I purchased a Peter's Honey Fig tree last summer from Civano Nursery. One of the main reasons I decided to buy this tree is that the label on the tree said it is cold hardy from 0 to 10 degrees and I had been wanting a fig tree for several years. I planted the tree in my yard in Tombstone, Arizona. It was growing well until winter came. We have had the mildest winter in quite a few years. so I was surprised when the tree froze. My lemon tree, which is not cold hardy, made it fine through the winter because I covered it. If I had known to do this for the fig tree I would have done so.

I waited and waited this spring for the tree to bud out and it did not do so, even though other fig trees in Tombstone were flourishing. I was advised by someone at Civano Nursey to cut the tree back until I cut into green growth. All I cut into was dead tree trunk and branches. I figured the tree was gone. Last weekend I happened to notice some green leaves coming out of the trunk close to the ground. My main questions are has this tree been grafted and will it produce fruit?

I would appreciate any information your company can give me on this tree since I am unable to get any from Civano Nursery. The product code on the tree I purchased is 1494936745. Another number on the tag is 036745 Product of USA. It name is Ficus carica

Answer: The Honey Fig tree you purchased was cutting grown so it was not grafted onto a rootstock. Therefore, any sprouts from the roots will be Peter's Honey Fig. It's unfortunate your tree died back during the winter months, but it happens all the time with figs, unless they are protected during their first few years in the ground. If you decide to replace the tree, the varieties most successfully grown here in Tucson are the ?Brown Turkey' and ?Black Mission' fig. Both are common fig varieties that do not require pollination to produce mature fruit.

Brown Turkey produces medium-sized, flavorful fruit with mahogany brown to purple skin. The fruit is best eaten fresh and is not good for canning or drying. For best fruiting, Brown Turkey requires heavy annual pruning to encourage maximum fruit production. Prune in the Winter when the tree is dormant and it is easy to see the overall form.

Black Mission produces larger, purplish-black fruit with excellent flavor, that can be eaten fresh, dried or canned. Only light pruning is generally recommended to provide a uniform shape and encourage good fruit production. Heavier pruning may be done to control size.

Best wishes with your fig trees!

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