Grow Your Own Garden of Eden

 

 

 The first Bikini.  You would have reached for a fig leaf too, those apple tree types wouldn’t have covered much.

 You know the story, whether you’re a former Sunday-school kid or just an average consumer of western culture:  Adam and Eve’s underwear, still available after all these years.

 The real prize on this tree is the fruit.  In the photo above the fruit is unripe, not a little soft to the touch or colored out. 

 You don’t have to be an  expert to recognize a ripe fig.  This is the Brown Turkey fig and there is a darker one, the Black Mission fig (black, right?).

  There is a white Kadota fig that,  in my opinion, has less sunny flavor. 

 The fig has been in gardens since time began so there are multiple varieties in every country warm enough to produce them.

 And on the inside:

 If you like the taste of the fruit-filled Fig Newton cookie, you’ll like dried figs.

 The tree is so generous that two crops a year are produced.  The spring crop is borne on last year’s wood, the main crop, usually the most productive, comes in the fall on new wood.

 The trees are easy to grow and are beautiful.  There are no blossoms, the fruit is the blossom!  Once the fruit ripens it must be picked or in just  days it will split and fall to the ground. And they don’t keep well, so they must be eaten within a day or two after picking.  This fresh  fruit is not usually sold in produce markets for just this reason.

Kids love to harvest them. The tree sap is a little irritating, so long sleeves for the harvester, if the skin is sensitive.

 To root a new tree from and old one,  take a low growing branch and scratch up the underside, then anchor it to the ground so that the raw branch touches the soil.  After it takes root, clip it off and plant in a sunny place.

 Health benefits from eating this delicious fruit are legend.  They contain more calcium than milk! The fig is mentioned in the Bible of course, and the Koran, and throughout historical literature. Mmmm, good!

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~ by dottiedoright on January 23, 2010.

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