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Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Figs Remaining on Tree During Winter is Normal

Q. Our fig tree is losing all of its leaves but still has fruit on it. What can we do?
The third crop of figs in Las Vegas does not have enough time to ripen before freezing weather. The figs remain on the tree after leaf drop, dried and inedible.
A. This time of year figs lose their leaves, it is normal. It is that time of year.
            What confuses you is that there is fruit remaining on the tree and you would like to harvest it. Figs, in our climate, have three crops each growing season but unfortunately our season is not long enough to support the third crop. So this crop is lost to winter weather.
Mixture of early figs (briba, lower. older wood) and main crop (smaller, above, new wood) coming on a little later, less mature.

            The first crop of the season grows on the wood produced last year older wood and is called the briba crop. The second and third crops are called the main crops and develops on new growth.

            What you are seeing is normal. Enjoy the first two crops and remove the third crop and put it in your compost pile to prevent possible future disease or insect problems. However, I must admit, I usually let the immature fruit from the third crop drop to the ground where it rots in the wood mulch beneath the tree with no problems.

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