Fig tree care - Knowledgebase Question

Staten Island, NY (Zone 6B)
Avatar for jraggi
Question by jraggi
March 27, 2007
I successfully started a fig tree in my garden from my grandfather's tree. It bears black figs. My figs take a long time to ripen and are not very large. I lose most of my figs in the fall when it gets cold, because they haven't ripened. My tree is now in it's fifth season and I cover it every winter. My question has 2 parts. How can I get a better crop of figs and sooner in the season? What is the best way to keep the birds from eating my figs? Nets, shiny objects and fake owls don't work for me.

Thank you.

Answer from NGA
March 27, 2007
Unfortunately, your local growing season is on the short side for figs. If you grew the fig in a container you might be able to extend the season a bit by taking it outside on mild days and bringing it indoors at night to protect it from the cold, but this may not be practical.

If netting is not working (it should be installed to the ground so they can't get in under it), you could try enclosing it in a wire mesh cage to keep the birds out with the mesh held out from the tree so they can't peck the fruit by reaching through the mesh. Or, you might experiment with the monofilament technigue explained at the following web site.

Good luck with your fig crop this year!

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