Register  |   | 
 
 
 


Reply
  Author   Comment  
Rewton

Avatar / Picture

Registered:
Posts: 2,031
Reply with quote  #1 
The fig world never ceases to amaze and surprise.  So, in the Spring of 2011 I got three cuttings of what were called Hardy Chicago from a forum member.  (She hasn't posted for quite a while - Christy are you out there?)  They were not from her tree but were extra cuttings that had been sent by two other fig growers.  More specifically one or two of the cuttings was from a person who simply called it Hardy Chicago while one or two of the cuttings were from a different source who called it Hardy Chicago Mt. Etna Sicily.  My understanding from Christy was the latter strain was supposed to be the "real strain from Sicily" whereas the former strain was the common Hardy Chicago found on this side of the pond.  (Note that there are threads on the GW about what strain is the true HC.)  Back then I wasn't a complete fignut and I didn't keep track of which were which - I just assumed that the differences were so subtle that it didn't much matter.  Only one cutting was successful.

Fast forward to August, 2013.  I finally got fruit off the tree for the first time today (see images).  First of all, I've known for a while that the leaves (mostly 3 lobed and also some that have 3 lobe plus 2 minor lobes) are somewhat different than the mainly 5 lobed leaves I see others post for HC.  As the fruit swelled and ripened it started with with a distinctive striped pattern before turning mostly purple with some green close to the neck.  The fruit is larger than what expected for a HC (and larger than other Mt. Etnas I'm familiar with).  Then when I cut into it I didn't see the red pulp I expected but rather more of a amber color with a pink hue also.  It could have used a couple more days of ripening and the tree is young but it was very pleasant tasting indeed.  It had definite watermelon flavor with some honey also, not overly sweet, quite juicy, and not very much seed crunch (in contrast to my RdB).  I expect the flavor will be more intense with more ripening and an older tree.  I really like the flavor and it's a healthy plant so I'm not disappointed.

Anyway, is this a Hardy Chicago variant?  Is it even a Mt. Etna type of fig?  Any ideas what this fig is?

Attached Images
jpeg IMG_2147.jpg (103.72 KB, 89 views)
jpeg IMG_2148.jpg (78.98 KB, 95 views)
jpeg IMG_2150.jpg (80.93 KB, 96 views)
jpeg IMG_2152.jpg (34.08 KB, 100 views)
jpeg IMG_2153.jpg (23.32 KB, 100 views)
jpeg IMG_2155.jpg (32.84 KB, 96 views)


__________________
Steve MD zone 7a

Dieseler

Registered:
Posts: 8,235
Reply with quote  #2 
I one for one do not guess fig plants
but i know for certain that plant pictured is not Hardy Chicago.
Rewton

Avatar / Picture

Registered:
Posts: 2,031
Reply with quote  #3 
Thanks Martin.  It certainly is not the same as your HC and others I've seen on the forum.  I still haven't tasted very many fig varieties and for me it was a totally different taste sensation than I have had before.  I'm definitely impressed after having just one fig and am really curious if it is a known variety.
__________________
Steve MD zone 7a

susieqz

Avatar / Picture

Registered:
Posts: 1,008
Reply with quote  #4 
yup leaves not at all like my HC. i've seen figgirl's pics of her ''true'' strain and they are the same as regular HC.

you have neither.

__________________
susie,
burner of trees
 
 
persianmd2orchard

Registered:
Posts: 429
Reply with quote  #5 
I think we can all agree this is not HC... could it possibly be an Osborne Prolific/Neveralla??? The pulp color on a dark skinned fig is not too common... I have never grown OP... but I think some leaves may look a tad similar...

http://www.figtrees.ca/varieties.html under Neveralla??? Someone else is going to have to save the day...
Rewton

Avatar / Picture

Registered:
Posts: 2,031
Reply with quote  #6 
That's a good thought, Pooya.  The leaves are indeed similar.  However, Neveralla supposed to have amber to white pulp.  I've only looked at one fig so far but I'm not seeing anything close to white.  The neck of this fig is not as prominent as Neveralla as well.  So not a perfect match but something to keep an eye on.

Oh, I forgot to mention that this fig started out the season in a container and then was put in the ground in June.  So it is probably ripening a couple weeks earlier than it normally would have.

__________________
Steve MD zone 7a

Rewton

Avatar / Picture

Registered:
Posts: 2,031
Reply with quote  #7 
OK, so this thread didn't attract much interest - maybe because I wrote so much at the beginning? :)  Anyway, I emailed Herman2 and he thinks it is Sicilian Red.  That seemed familiar so I went back to my old emails and I had forgotten that, in addition to the 2 types of HC cuttings, Christy sent me a third type which she called Sicilian Red Bifara.  She said these were sent to here by another fig grower a couple weeks before and she decided to throw a couple in.  Just for kicks I did a google search and this brought up a GW thread post about a month before this time in which Marius (mnedelcu) promised to send Christy some Sicilian Red Bifara cuttings.  So my best guess is that either Christy or I mislabeled a cutting and my tree is a SRB derived from Marius' tree who in turned got it from a guy in Queens according to the GW thread.  Maybe Marius can chime in if he remembers any of this.  Anyway, the leaves and fruit really do look like the Sicilian Red/Sal's Corleone/Palermo Red/Aldo family of figs so I'm convinced.  Anyway, thanks Christy for the cuttings - I'm really happy to have this tree!
__________________
Steve MD zone 7a

musillid

Avatar / Picture

Registered:
Posts: 1,513
Reply with quote  #8 
I am glad your mystery is solved. It certainly looks and sounds worth keeping.
__________________
Dale
non compost mentis in Zone 6a
JohnnieB

Registered:
Posts: 155
Reply with quote  #9 
The leaf pattern certainly resembles a Red Sicilian that I picked up recently.
__________________
Wish List:St. Rita,LdA, and any unknown heirlooms
Rewton

Avatar / Picture

Registered:
Posts: 2,031
Reply with quote  #10 
Johnnie - thanks for the additional confirmation.  I'm still hoping to hear from Marius and Christy for some additional confirmation but in lieu of that I'm assuming Red Sicilian Bifara.
__________________
Steve MD zone 7a

PHD

Registered:
Posts: 360
Reply with quote  #11 
Rewton, I agree with Herman it does not look like any Mt Etna type fig, either Hardy Chicago, Dark Portuguese or MVS Black 

 Pete
Rewton

Avatar / Picture

Registered:
Posts: 2,031
Reply with quote  #12 
Update: I heard from Christy (a.k.a. buonnatale2u on the forum) yesterday and she agrees with my theory that this fig is Red Sicilian Bifara.  Her RSB cuttings did indeed come from Marius.  Thanks Christy for the cutting!

More importantly, she wanted you all to know that the reason she hasn't posted for a year or so is that she has had some serious health issues.  Here's hoping she has a full recovery.  Please keep her in your thoughts and prayers.

__________________
Steve MD zone 7a

Previous Topic | Next Topic
Print
Reply

Easily create a Forum Website with Website Toolbox.