Edible Common Fig Tree / Ficus Carica (Half Standard)
The fig tree (Ficus carica) is an eye-catching Mediterranean plant that makes a brilliant centrepiece for any garden, with its smooth grey-barked trunk and lush foliage. Its attractive large leaves have 3-5 lobes and are known for their pleasant fragrance.
The fig tree is a deciduous tree which originates in the Middle East and is native to Syria and Persia where it grows among rocks and scrub on hot dry soils. However fig trees have been cultivated in the UK for over 2000 years since Roman times and the fig tree is well adapted to our climate to the extent that it can self-propagate in the mild SW regions. Ficus carica is resistant to frost and will re-grow from root level in spring if hard frost damage cause it to die back.
The fig tree grows best in an area that is sheltered but receives plenty of sun, which is why many gardeners successfully plant figs near or next to a South-facing wall in the UK. Fig trees need well-drained soil and wont do well in shade.
Most fig trees benefit from starting off in pots before being introduced to garden beds when they are strong enough and are starting to outgrow their constricted environment. When potted it is essential to water your plant regularly but avoid over-watering. Once mature the fig tree will thrive in moist or dry soil and can tolerate drought.
The fig tree usually bears fruits from early summer to September producing abundant dark violet, green or black figs in hot summers. Ficus carica is ideal for container cultivation as it needs to have its roots restricted for optimum fruit crop; otherwise it will bear more leaves than fruit.
HEIGHT & SPREAD
Eventual Height: 6m but can be kept at any desired height by an annual pruning
Eventual Spread: 4.5 m