I peeked under the laundry bag which had protected my Chicago Hardy fig from any light in the basement this winter, and was shocked to see that it had leaves, it had buds, it had broken dormancy. Crud. (no pictures, I seem to have misplaced my camera, again) It is warm out, but too cold at night to expose tender new growth. I had also been planning to transplant it into a bigger pot with a self watering resevoir in the bottom, but I don’t think I’ll be able to manhandle it out of the current pot, root prune it, then stick it in the new pot without killing the thing. Or myself.
But it is such a cool plant! Big biblical leaves, dark and shiny in the summer, and last year, it actually produced 2 real live figs- they tasted just like Newtons, except without the cookie part. I think in a bigger pot, with more reliable water, it can produce even more. Here in zone 5, it is not likely to be hardy in the ground, so I am struggling with the pot, and the dormancy.
I know, some people buy figs at the grocery store. Or they just don’t eat them. Or, they don’t complain about their trees. From what I have read, though, figs have a long history of people messing with them- I’ve read about Italian immigrants in the Northeast wrapping their fig trees in tarpaper and straw. So, my plan is, wait two weeks, bring it upstairs and put it on the covered porch- it will get more sun, a little cold, but not enough to freeze the new growth, we hope. Next step, ask for help in the transplant process, so I’m not dragging it around myself.