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Subject: Excel(lent) X 2 Replies: 7
Posted By: GeorgiaFig Views: 1,941
 
More observations on the Excel:

No fig is perfect I guess, and here's a downside to Excel: It seems more prone to splitting than some of our other figs, some of which have never split.  The Excel does though.  After several dry weeks we got a heavy rain last night, and some of the figs were split this morning.  Also, it seems to be more effected by FMV than some of the other figs.

I'm still very happy to have this fig in our collection, and would recommend it to others, because of the sweet flavor, exceptionally high productivity, growing fine in ground unprotected (Zone 7b; despite an exceptionally cold winter last year with signficant snow) and birds don't seem to bother it (because of the green/yellow color), but it's a good, solid fig, not our best overall all things considered.

I don't want to discourage anyone from trying an Excel, as it is a good fig, and if ours died I would start another, but just wanted you to know everything good and less than good in selecting your collection.

Best wishes to all.

John
North Georgia Piedmont
Zone 7b

Subject: Strawberry Verte 2010 & 2012 Replies: 16
Posted By: GeorgiaFig Views: 4,152
 
Hi JD.  Congratulations, and I am certain that this is just the beginning of great success with your fig orchard.

We should have our first Strawberry Verte next season hopefully, but it's rooted well and growing strong this season.

While I of course defer to my colleagues with far more experience on the general question of how age of the tree affects flavor, I can tell you that our LSU Purple (about 8 years total in ground) just gets better every year.  It's gone from good the first few years, to outstanding, with the sweetness and flavor dramatically improving this year especially.  I've gone from enjoying the LSU Purples, to great excitement in picking every single one.  It has been very productive this year, and yet with our family of 5 not one LSU Purple is going to waste.  They are becoming that good!  I hope it will be the same with all your figs, including this Strawberry Verte, that it will get better every year.

In just the few years I have been growing figs it is becoming obvious that there are great variations in flavor even from the same tree, depending on many factors including heat, rain, age of the tree, sunlight, soil quality, and no doubt many other factors as well.

Best wishes.

John
North Georgia Piedmont
Zone 7b

Subject: LSU Purple Power! Replies: 54
Posted By: GeorgiaFig Views: 5,836
 
Hi Martin.  The VDB is the best fig I have ever tasted.

But HC is of course just as good as ever, it's just that to my surprise VDB is even better.  I love the HCs so much, it was hard to imagine a better fig.  And this summer, I would put our LSU Purple a very close third as they have been outstanding.  Any of these figs are excellent.

The LSU Purple is definately better this summer than ever before.  I think it is about 8 years in ground here.  It may be drawing more nutrients and sun to improve flavor, maybe it is the exceptionally hot summer, maybe both, but the LSU Purple's flavor has been very impressive this summer, and highly productive.

But the VDB: WOW!  I was quite surprised at the depth and complexity of the flavor, the rich dark color, even the texture was different and quite remarkable.

We used to love the Fall in the Great Lakes area, but it is also a little sad to see summer go given the tough winters there.  Here in the South though, we are happy to see summer go and welcome some cooler weather and a break from the 90s and 100s.

Take care good friend.

John

Subject: LSU Purple Power! Replies: 54
Posted By: GeorgiaFig Views: 5,836
 
Hi again Martin.  We just tried our first VDB and WOW!  Those are really something special.  We love HC, but the VDB is extraordinary!  Can't wait until we have more.

It's tough to beat HC, but VDB just did!  ;-)

Take care good friend.

John

Subject: LSU Purple Power! Replies: 54
Posted By: GeorgiaFig Views: 5,836
 
Hi Martin.  Figs are in the same plant family as mulberries, so I guess it would not be surprising at all to have some mulberry/berry flavors in a fig.

I will get home late tonight, but provided no bird has figured out a way around the VDB net, we will try this one tonight, and I will be very happy to report what everyone thinks.  It's one fig (the first one) but I will carefully cut it into fourths for me and my three boys (ages 12, 10, and 7).  My wife keeps saying that she really isn't crazy about figs, so she won't want any.  Other that this obvious flaw, however, she is perfect!  ;-)

I will let you know later tonight.

Hope you are well my friend.

Best wishes.

John

Subject: LSU Purple Power! Replies: 54
Posted By: GeorgiaFig Views: 5,836
 
Hi Susan.  It really is a small world.  There are lots of IU-Bloomington grads down here.  There's even an "IU" themed sports bar in Atlanta (so I have been told!).  ;-)

The Piedmont area here looks just like Bloomington, so much so that they filmed part of "Breaking Away" in Athens, GA.  Bloomington has more Maple trees, and not as much red clay (there's some red clay in the Bloomington area too), but otherwise, they are very similar.

Hope you can enjoy a trip to Brown County this fall, very beautiful.

Best wishes.

John
North Georgia Piedmont
Zone 7b

Subject: LSU Purple Power! Replies: 54
Posted By: GeorgiaFig Views: 5,836
 
Hi Martin.  I checked the VDB this morning and it was almost fully ripe.  It's netted, so I hope it will be there tonight and we will try it.

HC is definately my favorite, and everyone's favorite here at our house, so I think we have very similar taste to you.  I have a Dark Portugese from Bass, and it will probably have fruit next year.  And a Sal's ("Gene") from Ed, and a Sal's (Corleone) from George.  Do you think these are similar in taste to HC as well?  Our HCs have been fantastic this summer, and very, very productive.

The LSU Purples have been great too, and every one I eat I like them better and better.

But the VDBs are just starting to ripen.  We will do the taste test tonight and I will let you know.

Hope you are enjoying the summer.

Best wishes.

John


Subject: LSU Purple Power! Replies: 54
Posted By: GeorgiaFig Views: 5,836
 
Hi Dennis.  Keep a close eye on the birds.  The purple color seems to really attract them, but I netted our tree and problem solved.

And Noss, the first couple years our LSU Purple wasn't nearly as good as it is now.  I don't know why the flavor improves over time, but now it's really outstanding.  Maybe a more mature tree can draw more nutriets and sun, but whatever it is, this tree seems to get better every year, and this year it has great flavor, top notch.

Best wishes to all.

John

Subject: LSU Purple Power! Replies: 54
Posted By: GeorgiaFig Views: 5,836
 
Hi Paully.  I think our LSU Purple is about 8 years old in ground, that's my best guess.  And that's probably pretty close.  It's been long enough that I'm not 100% sure how many years, or even where I got it, but I think Raintree Nursery probably.

It does just fine in ground here in Zone 7b.  We had our coldest winter last winter, with lots of snow and cold, and it didn't even put a dent in this fig.  I don't know how far you can go North with it though, but it's fine in ground here.

Hope you are having a great summer.

Best wishes.

John

Subject: LSU Purple Power! Replies: 54
Posted By: GeorgiaFig Views: 5,836
 
Hi Will.  As you can see, so far no signs of FMV on our LSU purple, and it's been in ground for about 8 years or so.  I don' know whether FMV is something it can catch, or whether it comes from the mother tree, but our mother tree seems to be FMV free or at least non-symptomatic showing no signs of infection.  It is a vigorous grower.

And Ottawan, I don't know if LSU Purple will be productive that far North.  It is a later fig, which doesn't help that far North with the shorter season.  I would say though that the productivity and flavor of the LSU Purple seems to increase dramatically with age.  At first I thought the figs of the LSU Purple were good, but each year they seem to have gotten even better.  Now it's a close second only to the Chicago Hardy, which is everyone's favorite here right now.  We will try our first VDB tommorow though, and I here those are pretty good too.

So maybe next year is the year for your LSU I hope.  Hope your other figs are more than making up the difference this year and that you are having a good summer.

Best wishes.

John
North Georgia Piedmont
Zone 7b

Subject: Ronde de Bordeaux Figs Starting Replies: 14
Posted By: GeorgiaFig Views: 4,039
 
Hi again Martin.  Sorry to bother you, but how do you get your name on your picture like that?  That is a very nice touch.  I finally got a digital camera, and I have even posted a few pictures now, but I have no idea how to do that.

Best wishes.

John


Subject: Ronde de Bordeaux Figs Starting Replies: 14
Posted By: GeorgiaFig Views: 4,039
 
Hi Martin.  That is a fantastic looking fig.

I'd have to take out a loan to afford one though!  Wow!  ;-)

These were selling for a very impressive price on ebay.  It is definately a very beautiful fig though.  Thank you for sharing this great pictures.

Hope you are well my friend, and hope you are having a great summer.

Best wishes.

John
North Georgia Piedmont
Zone 7b

Subject: LSU Purple Power! Replies: 54
Posted By: GeorgiaFig Views: 5,836
 
So far this has been our best fig season ever, and the LSU Purples are outstanding as well.

We had the first ripe main crop LSU Purples around the first of August, but they are just now really hitting their stride and producing heavy.

The flavor is outstanding as well.  Everyone has been eating so many LSU figs that the ones I picked this morning for the pictures weren't as ripe as I like them ideally, but they were still very sweet and juicy even when still just a little firm.

These root very easily, and I have already shared many young trees with my neighbors.  We aren't from LSU (we are IU-Bloomington grads), but our LSU grad neighbors really love these, not only because of the great flavor and productivity (they will continue producing right up to a hard freeze), but they love the Purple/Gold color.  I guess LSU has a football team or something . . . never heard of them though (just kidding!).  ;-)

Hey, but even if they can't beat the Bulldogs, the people at LSU definately put out some great figs!

Best wishes to all.

John
North Georgia Piedmont
Zone 7b

Attached Images
jpeg LSU_Purple.jpg (1008.32 KB, 378 views)
jpeg LSU_Purple_2.jpg (844.73 KB, 415 views)
jpeg LSU_Purple_3.jpg (510.67 KB, 379 views)


Subject: Confirming ID for Yellow Unknown Replies: 19
Posted By: GeorgiaFig Views: 1,900
 
Thank you Peg.  These are very interesting and I look forward to checking these out.  I am learning a lot in the process.

If the one you have ripening now is anything like this one, you will really enjoy it.

Thanks for the input Peg, and hope you are having a great summer.

Best wishes.

John
North Georgia Piedmont
Zone 7b

Subject: Excel(lent) X 2 Replies: 7
Posted By: GeorgiaFig Views: 1,941
 
Hi Tom.  I also got a VDB and a Texas Giant from Raintree, and both look good so far.  The VDB should have it's first ripe fig in a week or so.

The Excel has grown slower than many other figs, but for someone with a small space that could be a plus, and per square foot the Execl probably out produces most other varieties by far.

Hope you are having a great summer up there in Boston.

My brother back in Bangor is starting a fig collection also.  That will be a challenge in Maine, but I'm always very impressed with what Northern growers can achieve with figs.

Best wishes to all.

John
North Georgia Piedmont
Zone 7b

Subject: Excel(lent) X 2 Replies: 7
Posted By: GeorgiaFig Views: 1,941
 
Thank you Herman.

I have learned, through experience (the hard way too many times), that when you buy a fig tree from a nursery you are gambling, and sometimes you win, sometimes not.

This time it does look like the fig was labeled correctly and this is definately an Excel.  Raintree seems to do a pretty good job with this, at least so far all of their trees were true to type for us.

This isn't our best flavored fig, but I would say it is above average and the high productivity makes it a very good fig.

Probably a good addition to most collections.

Best wishes to all.

John


Subject: Confirming ID for Yellow Unknown Replies: 19
Posted By: GeorgiaFig Views: 1,900
 
Thank you for the information Herman.  I greatly value your expertise on these matters.

You are correct.  It does have a closed eye.  And I have never lost even one of these figs to souring or spliting.

It may not have a name, but it is a very good fig, one of our favorites.

Hope you are well my friend.

Best wishes to all.

John


Subject: Raspberry Latte Replies: 9
Posted By: GeorgiaFig Views: 1,575
 
Hi Susan.  We are growing these in ground, fertilized (Spring only) with kelp and fish meal, and we had a very warm, very wet summer, so everything grew like weeds.

Sounds like you are doing all the right things though, and getting great success.

Hope you are having a good summer.

Best wishes.

John


Subject: Confirming ID for Yellow Unknown Replies: 19
Posted By: GeorgiaFig Views: 1,900
 
Hi everyone.  We bought this fig at a local nursery (North Georgia) about 10 years ago.  It was labeled "Celeste" but it obviously isn't a Celeste, and we knew that when it had its first fruit, we just didn't know what it really was, and still don't know for sure.

It has been, however, a very pleasant surprise.  Of the figs we have fruiting now, Hardy Chicago is everyone's favorite for flavor, but this fig is a very close second.  And it is far superior in earliness (there is a light breba crop and the first of the main crop is ripe by mid-July), great productivity, and vigorous growth.  It also roots very easy, and grows in-ground here (zone 7b) with little (first year or two) or no freeze back (once established).  Last year was our coldest winter in 20 years and no freeze back.

The flavor is sugar sweet and very juicy, the figs are large, and very productive.  There is no souring or spliting, and because of the green/yellow color the birds have never bothered it, so no netting is needed.

I have had a few people look at it, and the suggestions are Marseilles mostly, maybe Latte, maybe Italian Honey (which was my guess), but on closer look the leaves don't look right.  And the F4F info suggests there may be little or no real difference among these any way.

I would like to share cuttings with otherrs, but I would also like them to know what they are getting if possible, so your thoughs would be most welcomed.

Best wishes to all.

John
North Georgia Piedmont
Zone 7b

Attached Images
jpeg yellowunknown.jpg (443.80 KB, 141 views)
jpeg yellowunknown2.jpg (603.22 KB, 153 views)
jpeg yellowunknown3.jpg (812.68 KB, 141 views)


Subject: Raspberry Latte Replies: 9
Posted By: GeorgiaFig Views: 1,575
 
Hi Susan.  I had 100% success with the Raspberry Lattes also.  And they have been very strong, aggressive growers all summer.  Even in part shade and with pinching back they are over 4 feet tall now.

I am anxious to see how they over winter here in ground in zone 7b.  I will provide protection for the RLs this first season or two (which I have never done for any fig before here; but I want to be extra cautious as the cold hardiness is unknown).

But in a couple years it will be survival of the fittest for all of the figs. 

All of our figs are in ground and unprotected, and so far they are doing great.  It's not unusual for them to freeze back to the ground the first few years, but they always bounce back from the roots, and after they get well established and acclimate they all seem to do just fine.  So in a few years we will know how cold hardy the Raspberry Latte is.  It will be great if it holds up, and if it doesn't, I will leave these to my warmer climate friends. 

Sounds like a great fig though, so it's definately worth a try.  One of the joys of gardening is pushing the limits and succeeding at things others told you couldn't be done, like those of you that grow figs so successfully in Michigan, Cananda, etc.  That's got to be a pretty good feeling and a lot of fun to show people figs growing in your yard that far north.

Growing figs here in the South really isn't much of challenge.  They pretty much grow like weeds, so no one is really that impressed locally.  But I'm growing the figs to eat, not to impress the neighbors!  ;-)

Best wishes to all.

John
North Georgia Piedmont
Zone 7b

Subject: Excel(lent) X 2 Replies: 7
Posted By: GeorgiaFig Views: 1,941
 
Hi Tom.  It does turn yellow.  And when it's really ripe (with the best and sweetest flavor) it also has little tiny brown spots.  The interior is amber and very juicy.  And the eye is sealed with a tiny drop of resin.

This fig is an Excel from Raintree Nursury.  And while the flavor is pretty good, the greatest feature is the productivity.  For a new fig, it really produced a lot, a fig on every node and sometimes two as in the photo.  And while some people have been known to use a chemical to induce this type of productivity, this fig has been inground and totally organic for two years, so no chemicals, and no fertilizer other than a little kelp and fish meal in the Spring. 

On the pictures, the first problem I had was that the files were too big to post here.  Keep in mind my tech skills are basically Amish, but I finally figured out how to crop it down to size and that decreased the file size enough to post.

It's going to be a process of trial and error, but at least now I can start sharing some pictures with everyone.

I would suggest checking with Herman on the fig you are trying to I.D.  If anyone knows it will be Herman.

Hope you are having a great summer Tom.

Best wishes to all.

John
North Georgia Piedmont
Zone 7b

Subject: Excel(lent) X 2 Replies: 7
Posted By: GeorgiaFig Views: 1,941
 
Hi everyone.  This is my first attempt at using a digital camera and attaching any photo, but if it works, I wanted to show you that our Excel had two ripe figs on one node.  And overall this new fig tree was loaded with excellent figs.

The flavor is very good (not CH good; but very good), very sweet, and very productive.  A major plus also is that the birds did not bother these figs at all because they are yellow/green and not red/purple.

Best wishes to all.

John
North Georgia Piedmont
Zone 7b

Attached Images
jpeg Excel_x_2.jpg (539.48 KB, 121 views)


Subject: Long Brown Honey fig. Replies: 34
Posted By: GeorgiaFig Views: 3,323
 
Our children ages 11, 9, and 7 have a much better sense of taste than I do, and I am always very interested in what they think of the various varieties of figs.

In general children have much more sensitive taste and smell than adults (which is why they generally don't like many of the strong flavors adults prefer), but they also have much more limited tasting experiences and vocabularies.

So it sounds like your granddaughter tasted an outstanding, full and complex flavor, much more than just sweet, reminding her of some of her favorite flavors, and that is the way she described it.

She is obviously a very bright child and quite precocious for her age, as most 4 year olds would just say "good!"

The bottom line though, is that this is a really good tasting fig!  ;-)

A definate keeper Herman.

Best wishes.

John


Subject: Long Brown Honey fig. Replies: 34
Posted By: GeorgiaFig Views: 3,323
 
Hi Herman.  This sounds like a real winner!

Great find.

And I am most impressed by your granddaughter's assessment.

Children so young always say exactly what they think, and a fig that is so pleasing to children is a real winner.

I am planting lots of figs in our orchard, but also giving a lot away to friends, family, and neighbors, because children really do love figs, and these are far more healthy than the candy, etc., they might otherwise be eating.

When the plant has reached sufficient size, hope you might be willing to offer a few cuttings sometime of this great new find. 

Best wishes.

John


Subject: Violet de Bordeaux Starting Replies: 5
Posted By: GeorgiaFig Views: 797
 
Hi Martin.

Those look fantastic.  Our VDBs are still in progress.

I actually think our HCs are outstanding, but we haven't tried a VDB yet.

Had our third ripe Excel this morning, and it was quite good, very sweet and better taste than the first two that came in the middle of heavy rains.  Having the better part of a week to dry out really helped.

I have an LSU something (uncertain other than it's an LSU) that is turning out to be a much better fig than expected in both productivity and taste.

We just got a digital camera (yes; I know; we are practically Amish) and when I figure out how to use it (hopefully this weekend) I will post pictures.

Hope you are well my friend.

John
North Georgia Piedmont
Zone 7b

Subject: Fig hunting....and reading.... Replies: 3
Posted By: GeorgiaFig Views: 628
 
Hi Matti.  I'm only about a year or so ahead of you in this process (long-term gardener/orcharder; new to figs), and in the Southern U.S., so while I probably don't have anything that would help you, I did want to say: 1) You have come to the right place, the people here are real experts; 2) I wish you great success; and 3) I'm certain you will have fun and find growing figs very rewarding.

Welcome and best wishes.

John
North Georgia Piedmont
Zone 7b

Subject: Please tell me how to get rid of 1 smart chipmunk Replies: 21
Posted By: GeorgiaFig Views: 3,688
 
Hi Dennis.  The Havahart Trap worked for us.

Also, a cat just showed up, stayed, and so far no more chipmunks.

Subject: Revised Thinking about growing in pot! Replies: 6
Posted By: GeorgiaFig Views: 1,021
 
Hi Herman.

Much of the information on many topics, including agriculture, comes from universities.  I have been a professor for 20 years now (in law), and there is a lot of very important and useful research coming from our universities.

But there is also an ever present pressure to conform toward existing orthodoxy, and to get externally funded grants frequently supported by the industries the professors are researching.

Not surprisingly, much of this industry funded research ends up supporting conclusions that are financially beneficial for the industry funding the research.

And while this research is still often useful, and should be considered, it is no substitute for actual field experience and knowledge from those who are engaged in field work. 

When I first decided to grow some figs here, I was actually told by "experts" that the only viable choices in this area were BT and Celeste.  I have no doubt that's what the book said.  So I planted those, but then discovered from people with experience in the field here at the Fig Forum that there were many, many more and better choices.

So although your conclusions may be contrary to current orthodoxy Herman, I am also 100% certain you are correct.  And if we do not challenge and test existing orthodoxy, we will never find better ways leading to greater success.

Thank you for sharing this information Herman.  My brother is starting a collection in Maine (in pots), so I will forward this to him as well.

Best wishes to all.

John
North Georgia Piedmont
Zone 7b

Subject: Great visit with a figgy friend. Replies: 5
Posted By: GeorgiaFig Views: 875
 
Hi Gene.  Here's to many, many more happy and healthy years.

Happy gardening, and I hope you are having a great summer.

Best wishes.

John
North Georgia Piedmont
Zone 7b

Subject: Excel 2010 Replies: 12
Posted By: GeorgiaFig Views: 1,364
 
Our Excel looks just like Mario's also: Same leaves; medium sized yellow fruit, light amber interior; sweet and good flavor.

Our seems to be highly productive too.  It is loaded with figs on every node, and even has two figs on one node, which I had never seen before.

I just picked the first ripe fruit from our two year old tree, and while the flavor was good, it may be even better with less rain.  With the two inches of rain we just got, and the previous 5 inches, we are now up to 7 inches of rain in just over a week.  We are up high so it drains pretty well here, but still the soil is saturated.

Best wishes to all.

John
North Georgia Piedmont
Zone 7b

Subject: Violet de Bordeaux Starting Replies: 5
Posted By: GeorgiaFig Views: 797
 
Hi Martin.

All is fair in love and war . . . or when you love figs and live in Zone 5!  ;-)

We have never had a VDB, this will be our first this year, but I have heard very positive reports on the taste of VDB.

Our VDB is loaded, probably well over 20, maybe 30 figs on a 3 foot tall 4 branched plant.

It may be good ours aren't ripening yet though, as we have had a good 5 inches of rain now in just over a week.  The ground is really saturated with water right now.

That's making the new in ground figs grow like weeds, but it probably wouldn't do much for the flavor of the VDBs.

Hope you are doing well my friend.

John


Subject: Violet de Bordeaux Starting Replies: 5
Posted By: GeorgiaFig Views: 797
 
Hi Martin.  Your VDB is ahead of ours here in Georgia.

This is the first year in ground for our VDB, that may have slowed it a bit, and it's been really hot up there in Chicago.

Whatever the reason, your VDB is clearly ahead of ours here, even though we are in Zone 7b.

Looks fantastic.  Hope it will taste as good as it looks for you.

Best wishes.

John
North Georgia Piedmont
Zone 7b

Subject: LSU Gold,Atreano,and Lindhurst White ripe fruits pix. Replies: 6
Posted By: GeorgiaFig Views: 901
 
Thanks for the great pictures Herman.  Those figs look fantastic.

It is very interesting to learn about the histories of figs and the varies strains of the same varieties.

But a the famous chef and gourmet Justin Wilson once said about wine: The best kind of wine is the kind you like.

Same with figs.  The best fig is the fig you like.

Best wishes to all.

John
North Georgia Piedmont
Zone 7b

Subject: shipping rooted plants this time of year? Replies: 7
Posted By: GeorgiaFig Views: 682
 
Hi Jason.

I'm no shipping pro, so I would definately defer to their advice on this, but I can say that I received many rooted figs throughout the summer, ranging from quart to 2 gallon size from Bass (PA) and Ed (NY) and they all arrived here in Georgia just fine.

But  I would suggest a very important part of keeping the plants healthy is on the end of the receiver.  The fig plant is going to fine on the shippers end, and probably fine through transit, but if it sets in a metal mailbox or even in full sun on a hot concrete drive, sidewalk, or front step all day it will be toasted on a 90 plus day.

So it's important that the receiver know it's coming and be ready to open the box right away, get it in the shade, and water it.

Hope you are well my friend.

John
North Georgia Piedmont
Zone 7b

Subject: figs in Pennsylvania Replies: 24
Posted By: GeorgiaFig Views: 4,881
 
Hi Bass.

That sounds like a great day, and lots of fun.

I know of several places around here where they have perfectly good figs that are just left to drop to the ground and rot.

That really bothers me, when they could be enjoyed fresh, made into preserves, etc., but it's their figs to do with as they wish of course.

I can tell you that not one fig goes to waste in our orchard though.

I greatly enjoyed reading this post Bass.

Thanks.

John
North Georgia Piedmont
Zone 7b

Subject: Hardy Chicago 2nd year pic Replies: 12
Posted By: GeorgiaFig Views: 3,034
 
Hi Martin.  I remember that heat wave in 1988.  We were still living in Indiana, and it was very dry that year also.  Even at night it didn't cool down.  A tough summer.

And Ottawan, I don't know much about your zone 5, but I do remember in Indiana/Illinois zone 5 the season changes were quite distinct and dramatic.

Martin wasn't kidding: Heat and humidity that can equal the South, and then BAM! snow and cold like the North.  Spring and Fall can be pretty short some years there, but it is a beautiful time, even if too brief.

Best wishes to all.

John


Subject: Hardy Chicago 2nd year pic Replies: 12
Posted By: GeorgiaFig Views: 3,034
 
p.s.   I wonder if the color variation is at least in part related to how much sunlight the fruit is exposed to, with the darker figs receiving more direct sunlight than the lighter colored ones.

Subject: Hardy Chicago 2nd year pic Replies: 12
Posted By: GeorgiaFig Views: 3,034
 
Hi Martin, and thank you.  That was very interesting and helpful.

I am still pretty new at this, as I mentioned above, but I am learning a lot fast it seems.

One thing I am discovering is that figs seem to be very much like wine: Every year the end product is different.  The amount of rain, heat, pruning, all seem to greatly affect the taste and quality of the figs.

And while that creates a considerable degree of uncertainty about the outcome every year, that also makes it endlessly interesting.

Our HCs have been great this year, but we haven't gotten excessive rain like you have up there (interesting that even the shape of your HCs was affected).  We've actually been a little on the dry side, but not bad, which is probably just about right for figs.

I grew up in Northern Indiana, and my Mom still lives there.  It has been a very hot and wet summer in that area, lots of rain, heat, and even some bad storms and flooding here and there unfortunately.

As Fall approaches though, you should enjoy some really nice weather.  The Great Lakes area is beautiful in the Fall, with all the Maple trees.

Hope you are well my friend.

John
North Georgia Piedmont
Zone 7b

Subject: Hardy Chicago 2nd year pic Replies: 12
Posted By: GeorgiaFig Views: 3,034
 
Hi again everyone: Please disregard my question posted above.

I recalled all of our HCs being darker purple, and most are, but I just went outside and did a thorough comparison in full sunlight, and we have both color variations on the same plant.

And it's not a function of ripeness.  One of the lighter HCs was dead ripe too, so ripe it fell off when I removed the net (and was delicious).

So yes both color variations occur, even on the same plant, and there is no difference in taste, as it's the same fig from the same plant.

I'm still pretty new at this, so I am going to ask some dumb questions.

My apologies, and I appreciate your patience.

Best wishes.

John

Subject: Hardy Chicago 2nd year pic Replies: 12
Posted By: GeorgiaFig Views: 3,034
 
Hi Tom and everyone. 

Our HCs are dark purple/reddish like yours Tom, but I have seen pictures of others that are lighter colored and more brownish tinted in appearance, but thes are pictures from people who really know their figs and identified them as HCs.

Has anyone else seen this different coloration in HCs (darker/purple reddish vs. lighter brownish tinted) or is this just an illusion of the cameras?

If they are different, is one strain better than the other?

Best wishes to all

John
North Georgia Piedmont
Zone 7b

Subject: Figoin Replies: 7
Posted By: GeorgiaFig Views: 1,764
 
Hi Bass.  

Those look great, and sound great from the description.

And the colors are quite beautiful also, the red interior with that light colored skin.

Italians definately know their figs, and have produced some great ones.

Looks like a real winner.

Best wishes.

John


Subject: My front porch Third year Gino fig Replies: 8
Posted By: GeorgiaFig Views: 1,013
 
Hi Herman.  You have a remarkable collection.

The colors on this fig are exceptionally vivid, very beautiful.

This fig seems to have held up to the cold weather just fine, and is producing a very good looking crop this year.

Hope they taste as good for you as they look.

Thank you for sharing these great pictures.

Best wishes.

John

Subject: Hardy Chicago 2nd year pic Replies: 12
Posted By: GeorgiaFig Views: 3,034
 
Wow Tim!  That looks fantastic!

And I would certainly second your comments on the Forum, Jon, and everyone that makes this such a fun and informative website.

I learn something every time I come here. 

Some of these guys and gals are real experts, and provide a level of expertise you couldn't even buy locally, because no one locally has the knowledge and years of experience they have.  Herman is pretty amazing, for example, but there are lots of extremely knowledgeable people here.  And importantly, you quickly find that figs really are a lot of fun.

Your Hardy Chicago just looks fantastic for such a young plant.  You must be doing all the right things.

Our Hardy Chicago figs have been exceptionally tasty this year, and very productive.  Hope yours will be too.

Best wishes.

John
North Georgia Piedmont
Zone 7b

Subject: Brooklyn White ???? Replies: 2
Posted By: GeorgiaFig Views: 703
 
Hi Bass.

I really need to get a camera and start posting pictures.  Sorry I don't have a picture.

But the Brooklyn White you sent has been a very strong grower.  In just a couple months it has increased 4 or 5 times in size.  And it's not even in an ideal location, as getting it later in the season, I had to put it toward the back of the bed, and it's not getting as much light as is ideal. 

Nonetheless, it is growing strong and looking most promising for a good first crop next year.

Hope you are well my friend.

John
North Georgia Piedmont
Zone 7b

Subject: How Big Can a BT Get? Replies: 5
Posted By: GeorgiaFig Views: 783
 
Hi Dennis.  We are in the same climate zone, and probably have very similar weather too.  We are in Northeast Georgia zone 7b.

Do you grow your figs in ground?

We grow them all in ground, even start our cuttings outside in ground, and although we get some freeze back, and sometimes all the way to the ground for the newer figs, they always bounce back it seems.

Do you have a variety that is doing especially well for you?  Most of our figs are still pretty new, from cuttings this Spring, but our established Marseilles and Hardy Chicago are doing great this year, very productive and outstanding flavor.

Hope you are having a great summer Dennis.

Best wishes.

John
North Georgia Piedmont
Zone 7b

Subject: How Big Can a BT Get? Replies: 5
Posted By: GeorgiaFig Views: 783
 
p.s.  I'm sure you are correct about the climate as a factor too Herman.

It's been an exceptionally long hot summer this year, even by North Georgia standards, so this may have enhanced the sugar content and taste of these BTs.

Our Chicago Hardys have been exceptional this year as well, seeming to really benefit from the extended hot summer, good size, very productive, and great taste, exceptionally sweet and figgy this year.

Our BT here on the homestead may just be a sad case, beyond hope even in a good year.

Fortunately, however, it looks like I have found a great replacement BT.

Thanks Herman, and best wishes to all.

John

Subject: How Big Can a BT Get? Replies: 5
Posted By: GeorgiaFig Views: 783
 
Thank you Herman.  I greatly appreciate your expertise.

My wife has an electronic camera, so she took pictures, but it's an older electronic camera and neither of us has a clue how to post here, a little embarrassing, but an honest answer.  I've just never been interested in technology, prefering simple things, reading, being out doors, etc., and not fighting with technology.  But I will see if I can get  someone to help with this.

But three quick points:

1) Fig #2 is a very good fig, well worth growing, and almost certainly a variety of BT as you say, but a very large strain, and maybe extra large in our climate.  And most important, quite tasty.

2) I will look further to see what Fig #1 might be.

3) Whatever fig #1 is, it did make outstanding fig jam.  I used your recipe Herman, and it was the best jam ever.  The very dark purple/black of these figs also gave the jam a beautiful color.

I greatly appreciate your help Herman.  I still don't know much, but I am learning.  Thank you my friend.

John


Subject: How Big Can a BT Get? Replies: 5
Posted By: GeorgiaFig Views: 783
 
Hi everyone.  Sorry I don't have a picture.

But here's the story: A friend asked if  I wanted to pick his figs, saying he had too many.  I have never had that problem (too many figs) so I was happy to help, make some fig jam, and share it with him.

He had two beautiful fig trees:

Tree #1) I'm almost certain is a Celeste, but the figs were exceptionally large and dark; a huge tree with a thick trunk and big enough to safely climb (and I'm 6 feet and 200 pounds; so that's a strong tree); the tree was a good 25 feet tall and loaded with ripe figs; figs were good but not great; but the virtue of this tree was the very abundant crop;

Tree #2) A much smaller tree (and easier to pick) with figs that matched the BT photos on the Figs4fun varieties section, but these were absolutely huge, the size of small to medium apples, and had an outstanding flavor; very sweet; good figgy flavor; good crunch from small seeds.

Our BT is pretty sad compared to this one, and I'm pretty sure it's a BT, I've just never seen one that big: 2.5 and up to 3.0 inches at the widest part on the largest figs.  And the taste was far superior to our BT.

When the weather cools, I'm digging up our BT and I have a start from his to replace it.

As I said, I'm pretty sure it's a BT (he said he bought it locally; but didn't know what it was; most sold locally are BT or Celeste), but if it is a BT (and probably is) the variation among BTs is astounding.

Best wishes to all.

John
North Georgia Piedmont
Zone 7b

Subject: Dark Portuguese Replies: 12
Posted By: GeorgiaFig Views: 1,536
 
This has been most interesting Martin.

Thank you for sharing this.

The Hardy Chicagos are pretty tough to beat.  Ours have been outstanding this year.  Even with lots of rain the past two weeks (nearly 4 inches), the Hardy Chicagos have been super sweet and very rich flavored.  And very productive this year.

So even not surpassing the Hardy Chicago in flavor, that can still be a pretty tasty fig.

Best wishes.

John
North Georgia Piedmont
Zone 7b

Subject: my best tasting fig so far Replies: 32
Posted By: GeorgiaFig Views: 2,281
 
Hi Bass.

I have to say, the suspense is killing me: What type of fig is this, and where can all 644 of us get one?  ;-)

Hope you are well my friend, and when you do have any of these available, definately count me in.  Looks like a real winner.

John
North Georgia Piedmont
Zone 7b

 

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