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Subject: Today's samplings Replies: 8
Posted By: Mescalito Views: 871
Hey Gene, glad to see you have been enjoying the Mead fig (aka "Meade"). My late Aunt would be happy to know this plant survives in the hands of fig enthusiasts. Unfortunately, the mother plants at her old home have been removed by the new owners, due to fear of bees. I'm so glad I shared cuttings with Gene and others here.

Anyone else tasted this fig yet?

Subject: Sal's Blk Uk, Mead, Vincenzo Replies: 14
Posted By: Mescalito Views: 1,392
Hey Gene, it's nice to see a ripe Mead fig, and to know that you are enjoying them. I really like them extra ripe. None of the figs on my plants have ripened yet, though I expect the mother trees will have ripe figs by the end of this month. My late Aunt Sarah Mead's house has been sold, and the young lady who bought the house says she doesn't like figs and plans to have the trees cut down. She said I could dig them up. Of course there is no way to move these two trees, they are at least 15' tall with many trunks. I asked her if she had ever had a fresh fig, and as I suspected, she has only had Fig Newtons. I talked her in to holding off on cutting the trees down until I picked a properly ripened fig for her to try. She already feels guilty as the trees are well loved by many in the area. I mentioned that she could cut the old growth to the ground this winter and allow regrowth, cutting back every year to maintain a smaller size. Hope she loves this fig as much as I do. I'm glad Gene and others here are growing my Aunt's fig in new areas. I look forward to hearing more reports. Any guess as to what variety this actually is would be welcome.

One note on the Mead fig, when I first posted my thread about it, I spelled my Aunt's name "Meade", when it is actually spelled "Mead". So I think Gene was the only person I shared this with until now.

Zone 7
Hanover, VA

Subject: Heat wave this week what to do with pots Replies: 45
Posted By: Mescalito Views: 2,514
I put potted figs in a tight group and wrap around the outside with weed barrier fabric or an old sheet. Keeps the soil cool. I have also put potted figs into a larger pot, similar to what Ken does. You can also bury the pots.

I've often wondered why most nursery pots are black, it seems to cause real heat problems during the summer. Painting them white is a great idea, but I guess I like the extra warmth a black pot can absorb during the cool months.

There is a product called Azactrol that is a refined neem extract, not just oil like many seem to be. It is used as a antifeedant, systemic/contact pesticide and fungicide. I have found it much more effective than all other neem products I have tried, though i've not used it as a fungicide. It's expensive, but I believe it is fully organic.


Subject: Cactus pears Replies: 108
Posted By: Mescalito Views: 8,116
I think the picture Bass posted of the purple fruited hardy is Opuntia cacanapa, fairly common in gardens on the East coast.

Subject: Cactus pears Replies: 108
Posted By: Mescalito Views: 8,116
The USDA has or had an impressive collection of Opuntia ficus-indica. There are 133 accessions described and pictured. Unfortunatly the list is for historical records and are not available for distribution. The source of each plant is listed, so it may be possible to track down a desired clone.

I found someone selling a supposed superior clone with orangish-red tunas on eBay, but the person never sent it after I purchased it. It seems only about half of the people who bought this cactus ever received anything. I'm still on the search for a tasty Opunitia variety to grow my own tunas. I have a local wild Opuntia humifusa clone that is spineless except for glochids. It's young pads are tasty fried up, but the tunas are small and seedy, though they taste pretty good. I believe many of the hardy prickly pears found in gardens with the large reddish-purple tunas are Opuntia engelmanni.

Subject: Sad day for me Replies: 37
Posted By: Mescalito Views: 1,418
Gene, we haven't talked for a while, and I'm sad to hear of your Mom's passing. My thoughts and prayers are with you and your family.


Subject: Syrian fig Replies: 30
Posted By: Mescalito Views: 3,891
I enjoy your pictures and descriptions of the flavor Bass. That's a pretty fig. It looks glaucus grey over golden skin with reddish tints.

I wanted a fig with a molasses flavor, and had read that Zidi had this flavor, so now I have one. Too bad I will never tastes it's figs.

Subject: Hollier Sweetness - Worst to First Replies: 25
Posted By: Mescalito Views: 9,617
Gorgi, I got a greenish fig from the Hollier-not you sent me. It was small but pretty sweet. It should get better as the plant is young and root bound.

Subject: Maltese Falcon Replies: 6
Posted By: Mescalito Views: 2,597
I can see why you picked it, as it looks like a bird was already tasting it.

I've got this plant and the Malta purple-red. One was previously called GM-1 and the other GM-5, but I can't recall which was which. They both are supposed to be select figs from Gorgi's large numbered collection. Glad to hear such good reviews on the Maltese Falcon.

Subject: ucdavis fig collection Replies: 22
Posted By: Mescalito Views: 1,675
Where most of the figs you ate fully ripened? Where there weather conditions that could have watered down some of them?

I'm still hoping you guys are wrong about Zidi needing the wasp. Richard Watts said it didn't...

Subject: my best tasting fig so far Replies: 32
Posted By: Mescalito Views: 2,281
Reminds me of LSU purple, along with the description of the crunch. I might have my first one of the season ripe for me when I get home.

Subject: This is why I like Pro-mix BX Replies: 22
Posted By: Mescalito Views: 2,082
That's some fast vegetative growth on the Ababareira. I just bought 2 bales of Pro-Mix BX- I have lots of plants to pot up, and it really seems to work better than most of my homemade mixes. I started mixing 3/4 perlite to one part Pro-Mix for my fig cuttings. I think I would still lose some cuttings early on if I didn't lighten up the Pro-Mix. So far so good with the new mix and cups with air holes on the sides- healthy, fast growing white roots.

Subject: The First TIme Ever I Saw... Replies: 13
Posted By: Mescalito Views: 1,108
John, I believe you hit the nail on the head, I'm going to add more perlite since it really only holds some moisture on the surface, not absorbent like the floor dry. 

Subject: The First TIme Ever I Saw... Replies: 13
Posted By: Mescalito Views: 1,108
Beautiful roots JD, it's a secure feeling when you see that. Those are like the roots I'm seeing using 1/2 Pro-Mix BX, 1/2 Floor dry (diatomite). I'm still losing some cuttings though, and I'm thinking it is because the mix is a bit too moist. I don't water the cutting until the roots really get going other than mist when the top starts to dry. I'm thinking of doing what JD has done, add one part perlite, and put some holes on the sides of the cup. Hopefully the improved air flow will stop the rot. Probably need to keep my mix drier too. JD, do you water your cuttings after you put them in cups?

Subject: Salelm White Cuttings Replies: 10
Posted By: Mescalito Views: 1,040
I've seen similar results as Nelson. I've been moving my bag rooted cuttings into 1/2 Pro-Mix BX, 1/2 Napa floor dry (diatomite), and the roots are looking much better than the same cuttings put into half and half perlite/vermiculite. Also, I was having trouble with moisture regulation of the perlite/vermiculite, and lost too many to rotting or desication.  Now the cuttings are producing abundant white, thick roots. I think the mycorrhizal fungi are partly responsible for the improved success. It is supposed to help with disease control and improve root development. The diatomite is also probably helping. It is supposed to be one of the better mediums for hydroponics due to the excellent water and air storage, and also the silica it is composed of. 

Subject: Cuttings List posted 10:00 PST today Replies: 62
Posted By: Mescalito Views: 3,973
I'm cofused where it says to ignore the pricing code letter, but Jon's example still has the letter in front of the number. Should I keep the pricing code or remove it?

Subject: Cuttings List posted 10:00 PST today Replies: 62
Posted By: Mescalito Views: 3,973
Great list Jon, lots of desirable varieties. Placing the order in numerical order is difficult to say the least. I hope I am doing it right...

Subject: Any Takers? Replies: 12
Posted By: Mescalito Views: 1,009
I think pawpaws are delicious, so I would probably enjoy this fig ;)

Subject: violette de bordeaux/ early violet Replies: 8
Posted By: Mescalito Views: 820
Mr. Robin told me he stopped offering Early Violet. I think he told me it leafed out too early in the spring and could be damaged by frost...

Mike  z7, Richmond, VA

Subject: a fig you wish you have Replies: 8
Posted By: Mescalito Views: 810
The color reminds me of the fruit of a prickly pear cactus. It sure looks tasty.

Subject: I think I got Punked !! Replies: 92
Posted By: Mescalito Views: 3,579
I read an older post a while back either here or gardenweb where someone in New York was selling two mature Brooklyn White and one Celeste. I thought that might have been the possible source of the cuts sold on eBay.

Subject: What do Ya make of this? (pic) Replies: 14
Posted By: Mescalito Views: 894
Cecil, I guess it could be since figs will sucker, and root cuttings work with figs. It has the color of a new fig leaf, but then again it could be a seedling of something else. 

Subject: I think I got Punked !! Replies: 92
Posted By: Mescalito Views: 3,579
Nelson, I got some of those cuttings from ebay, and they arrived pretty quick here in the US. The seller was new and wanted to get good feedback and wrote me when it took me a while to post my feedback. So I would think they would not want a negative so early on. I don't know why they would slack on getting back with you to let you know what is up. Hope they arrive soon for you.

Subject: Adam Replies: 4
Posted By: Mescalito Views: 1,030
That is a colorful fig, like a beautiful sunset. The splitting problem would keep me from trying it, too wet and humid here.

Subject: Eve's Black Cherry fig photos Replies: 16
Posted By: Mescalito Views: 2,041
That's a good looking fig. It's a shame the breba crop is so large and no good. I wonder if the second crop needs the fig wasp?

Subject: Meade fig Replies: 11
Posted By: Mescalito Views: 1,735
Paully, thanks, I really slow down and savor the flavor of this fig. I have a hard time not eating all I pick.

Maggie, I can only imagine the connection you and others have with a fig that has been with the family for generations. I was touched by the stories in Nelson's thread of being able to reunite a family member with a fig after a move overseas. Hopefully my kids will have the same passion for gardening and figs when they are older, and can keep these plants going.

I am living in my Aunts house for a while, but we will have to sell the house soon. I hope the new owners will want to keep the figs. I have cuttings and layered plants I'm going to pass to the neighbors and other people who have enjoyed the figs, so the plant will survive that way.

Subject: Besides figs Replies: 13
Posted By: Mescalito Views: 1,042
I've been eating pawpaws nearly daily for close to a month, they are delicious! These are wild fruit, found along the James river. I have three varieties of Peterson pawpaws coming my way, they were supposed to be shipped Sept 15 but I've not seen them yet.  I wonder how much tastier can they get, the wild ones are so good, and the Peterson varieties I chose are top rated for flavor of the many cultivars out there.

Subject: Meade fig Replies: 11
Posted By: Mescalito Views: 1,735
Martin, yes the plant mostly has the three lobed leaf, though it does produce another more complex, deeply lobed leaf. A sucker plant at my parents place has only produced this leaf form. I'll try to get a photo of it. Perhaps our family figs are related.

Tim, this is a fantastic forum to learn and share ideas. I've been lurking for a while, and I've done many searches on topics that crossed my mind. 

As far as the flavor of the Meade fig, it's my favorite of the 10 or so I have tried. In early maturity, it is a little more acid, peachy with raspberry notes. At full maturity, it is syrupy in the middle with a richly flavored strawberry jam taste. The skin is very tender and has a great texture, and is sweet too. It will often produce a clear sweet resin in the eye, and I have never found ants in the figs, except those that have started eating from the side, and those never make it too far and can be brushed away.  The plant is very productive and starts producing usually in late July. This year it started later, after the first week of August. It is still producing some figs, but I think the best ones were in the heat of the summer.

Subject: Meade fig Replies: 11
Posted By: Mescalito Views: 1,735
Thanks for looking Martin and Gene. When I have a chance to resize my photos I'll post more. These were all taken with a phone, so the quality is not very good. In the last group of pictures is a photo of an unripe fig. At that time, I was competing with everyone who yearly picked the figs clean, and the birds. The pictures of the ripe figs were after I started wrapping them with newspaper so they could ripen without being eaten. In the picture of the tree against the house, you can still see newspaper in the tree, though this was taken after peak fruiting.

Subject: Meade fig Replies: 11
Posted By: Mescalito Views: 1,735
Well, that was my first attempt at posting pics on the web, sorry for the double pic. Here are a few more.

Attached Images
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Subject: Meade fig Replies: 11
Posted By: Mescalito Views: 1,735
Here is a fig given to my Aunt Sarah Meade some 35 years ago by some Italian friends after a return visit to Italy. She got two fig plants, both the same variety. This fig is hardy here in zone 7, and is very tasty when fully ripe. I don't know what the variety is, so until I do, I will call it Meade in honor of my late Aunt.

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Subject: Clone Bubbler Question Replies: 15
Posted By: Mescalito Views: 2,414
Nelson, I've used a bubbler cloner to root plants. Sometimes it worked well, and sometimes a slimy bacteria would grow. I found that it was good to move the cuttings to a solid medium as soon as roots started, because water roots are different that soil roots. It works great for elderberries.

Dieseler, sad to lose a pet, especially a friendly one you've had for so long. Your story reminded me about something I saw on TV the other day- A guy would snorkel or scuba dive and feed this one moray eel sausages. It became very tame eating them out of his hand, then one day it grabbed his thumb instead, and ate it! The guy had to have one of his toes grafted onto his hand.


Subject: Volunteer Figs Replies: 11
Posted By: Mescalito Views: 1,065
Wow Kern, what a beautiful variety of wild figs. I wish there were wild patches like that in Virginia, I'd enjoy looking for new clones to add to my garden. 

Bass, how do you suppose the Wild PA plant in your collection got there?

Subject: The Queen of Trees on PBS Replies: 4
Posted By: Mescalito Views: 872
Tonight at 8 pm EST on PBS, the show Nature will be re-running The Queen of Trees, about the sycomore fig and it's relationship with the fig wasp that fertilizes the fruit. It also shows how many animals rely on that fig. 

PBS has different programing in different areas, so check you local listing. I saw it last year and it was very interesting.   



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