Sunday, June 21, 2009

More than one of each

The single almond and apricot were, truth be told, disappointing. But the figs are a different story. I don't believe that anything much can go wrong with the figs. And there are more than one.

The fig in the photo below is the 'Banane' variety. If you're thinking of planting a fig, this is one type I strongly recommend. As you can see, the plant is small, but even last year it bore two delicious, sweet figs. This year, it's set to bear more, and it has weathered the drought very well without wilting. If it does well this year, I may even pull out some of my Japanese varieties and replace them with more Banane. I daresay these figs when dried would be fantastic.

One of my bigger fig trees is populated by miniature praying mantises. I learned the other day that figs in Japan are traditionally planted next to the privy. This is because the big rough leaves make a very good bottom-wiping medium in the absence of toilet paper. This is also the reason why figs are not typically planted close to any other part of the house. This 'fact' has been intimated to me by countless people before, and whenever I asked if it was because the roots might undermine the foundations, I always got a cocked head and a long "Mmmmmm...." in response. I'm glad at last to have met a gardening lady who is not squeamish about mentioning bottom-wiping.

Praying not to be 'wiped out'?


Luke said...

Excellent post. I'm getting more and more intrigued to grow my own fig. Is that variety self-fertile?

Rod said...

As far as I know, all cultivated figs are self-fertile.

This variety might suit you;

The other beauty of figs is the sesame-like aroma that the whole tree gives off.

Luke said...

Thanks for the link! As I was reading on some other sites about figs, my jaw almost dropped when I saw just how many varieties there are. Astounding.