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Fig - Ficus carica

Figs are considered to be one of the first crops humans cultivated and are prized for their nutrition, flavour and versatility. Growing your own fig tree is still the best way to provide a supply of fruit as they are not widely commercially grown, due to their fragility and poor storage qualities. Figs are wonderful fruit  enjoyed fresh, preserved or dried.

Although considered a subtropical tree, fig trees are quite hardy during their dormant period over winter, and can tolerate temperatures as low as -10°C (extended periods of low temperatures can cause stem damage). In order for the fruit to ripen, good warm weather during late summer is required. In most areas of New Zealand, any fig variety should generally grow and produce well. If you live in south of Nelson, go for early-ripening varieties, as temperatures later in the season will get too cool for later-ripening types.
Fig trees will grow in a range of soil types, including clay, but they hate having wet feet for long periods so free draining is recommended. Poorer soils can sometimes actually be better for figs, as it helps to keep their vigour manageable.
They will benefit from a general fruit tree fertiliser and regular watering, especially when the crop is ripening, but otherwise, figs are generally considered easy care and shouldn't require spraying.

Figs can be grown in large containers, such as a barrel but use good potting mix and keep them well watered. An added benefit of growing figs in pots is that the trees won't get too big, so you can easily cover them with netting to stop birds getting the crop before you. IIt also allows those in marginal regions (such as Canterbury and Otago), to move the pots into the warmest spot to allow the fruit to fully ripen. 

Fig Varieties

Click on a row, or scroll right, to view more information. To look up your climate zone click here.

Fruit Type
Months Harvest
Good Keeper
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