Photo by Melody

PlantFiles: Common Fig, Edible Fig, Higo, Mission Fig
Ficus carica

Family: Moraceae (mor-AY-see-ee) (Info)
Genus: Ficus (FY-kus) (Info)
Species: carica (KAIR-ih-kuh) (Info)

6 vendors have this plant for sale.

24 members have or want this plant for trade.

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6-8 ft. (1.8-2.4 m)

Unknown - Tell us

USDA Zone 7a: to -17.7 C (0 F)
USDA Zone 7b: to -14.9 C (5 F)
USDA Zone 8a: to -12.2 C (10 F)
USDA Zone 8b: to -9.4 C (15 F)
USDA Zone 9a: to -6.6 C (20 F)
USDA Zone 9b: to -3.8 C (25 F)
USDA Zone 10a: to -1.1 C (30 F)
USDA Zone 10b: to 1.7 C (35 F)

Sun Exposure:
Full Sun

Handling plant may cause skin irritation or allergic reaction

Bloom Color:

Bloom Time:
Unknown - Tell us


Other details:
This plant is suitable for growing indoors
Average Water Needs; Water regularly; do not overwater
This plant is resistant to deer

Soil pH requirements:
6.6 to 7.5 (neutral)
7.6 to 7.8 (mildly alkaline)
7.9 to 8.5 (alkaline)

Patent Information:

Propagation Methods:
From hardwood cuttings
By grafting
By budding

Seed Collecting:
N/A: plant does not set seed, flowers are sterile, or plants will not come true from seed

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There are a total of 13 photos.
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8 positives
7 neutrals
1 negative

Gardeners' Notes:

Neutral Dan796 On Apr 22, 2012, Dan796 from Eccles, WV wrote:

I've just purchaced a small pittiful looking one gallon sized `Chicago Hardy` fig from clearance at my local Lowe's.
My very first fig tree!
It's not but a very small twig at this point with but one branch on it still alive. But I'm hopeful it will survive, and will do well through our West Virginia winters.
Can anyone possibly suggest and/or maybe even share some cuttings of other varieties that will grow in zone 6a?
Apparently, after checking with a number of big box stores, and garden centers, `Chicago Hardy ` is the only variety I can find in my area, even though there must be other varieties available for culture in my zone ! ? !
Dan Near Beckley WV

Positive johnnydo On Nov 28, 2011, johnnydo from Loxahatchee, FL (Zone 10a) wrote:

Here on Roosevelt Island in New York City we have several fig trees in our community garden. They grow very tall 10+ feet. We have green and brown varieties. They can be cut back every year and still come back and bear fruit. Some years we can get a lot of fruit.
It seems the green and brown varieties respond to the weather differently as conditions will either favor one or the other year to year.
Most have been started by a garden club member from Lebanon who takes cuttings every year in the fall and spreads them thru the garden and else where (I have 2 of his growing in Loxahatchee Florida). They root very easily from cuttings. just place in water over the winter and plant in the spring. I actually kept them for over a year in the water in the house and finally got them to Florida where they are doing quite well in pots outside.

Neutral clue_less On Nov 11, 2011, clue_less from Santee, CA wrote:

My neighbor planted a fig tree about 3 feet away from our house. The tree is growing rapidly and now its branches are touching our house and growing above it. We love this tree but we are concerned that it may be negatively affecting the foundation of our home. Is this possible? Does the tree need to be removed for this reason? Any thoughts would be greatly appreciated.

Positive RobertMD On Jan 15, 2011, RobertMD from Taylor, AZ wrote:

I live at 6500 ft elevation in Northern Arizona. Each winter I haul this fig tree in for the winter where it sits in its 14" pot in a saucer. I water it every other week. Late afternoon sun hits the leaves for about a half hour each day. Any remaining immature fruit drop, and there is some leaf drop through the winter. However, each spring it is lively and ready to be taken outside in full sun. I always have lots of little (brown turkey?) figs, but the days get short and the nights get cold before they soften enough to eat.

Positive peggytheplantlady On Apr 23, 2010, peggytheplantlady from El Prado, NM wrote:

I am growing a Fig as a houseplant in Zone 5b, here in Northern New Mexico - it bears fruit usually every year although the fruit is quite small. What should I feed this tree to get larger fruit? I have about 14 figs on my plant right now and it's only about 2' tall with 5-7 stems bearing fruit. It's quite attractive as a houseplant! Doesn't get bugs either!

Neutral purplesun On Apr 13, 2009, purplesun from Krapets
Bulgaria (Zone 8a) wrote:

Common figs are really common in Bulgaria. They are cultivated widely, even in places that are supposed to be too cold for them, and have escaped and naturalised in dry, stony, steep, or infertile places. They don't germinate on fertile soil overgrown with grass, and certainly not in shade.
Here, in Krapets, figs are grown in almost every garden, and they tend to be killed to the ground in particularly severe winters. As one is moving south, however, they get bigger and bigger, until they reach tree-like proportions in places such as Sozopol or Achtopol; there, they don't get damaged at all and look rather robust.
I have a lukewarm attitude to this species because it doesn't really have any great ornamental value. The fruit is great though. And the scent on a hot, sunny day can be enthralling. Otherwise, very tough. We have what is actually just a stump, growing in the shade of two English Walnuts, and it keeps sending lanky shoots every year.
This tree definitely possesses some character, with those large lobed leaves and smooth bark.

Negative Turtlegaby On Jul 7, 2008, Turtlegaby from Decatur, AL (Zone 8a) wrote:

I would consider a fig tree to be invasive. I had a huge one growing on the side of the house when I bought it. It had multiple stems (appr. 30) The roots have been enormous and spreading all over the place, as much as 15 feet away from the tree. They had grown under the foundation of the house and I had to get the tree professionally removed by a company to prevent a serious damage to the house foundation. Even though the company grinded all the roots down to far below ground level, a year later I have shoots popping up everywhere. I need to permanentely remove them and still get long deep roots out for the ground on a daily basis.

Do not plant this tree close to your house and be aware that it will take over with the roots above ground level in a distance of more than 15 feet away from the tree, where nothing else can be planted. Definately not a good choice of tree for a small yard.

Positive tmccullo On Aug 14, 2006, tmccullo from Houston, TX (Zone 9a) wrote:

We bought a celeste fig tree last summer. It was about 3 foot tall. This summer it has a good size trunk and has grown to over 8 foot tall and very bushy. It produces a lot of fruit and attracts bees and birds. We bought a plastic owl to keep the birds from stealing our figs before we could get to them, but these birds here are not one bit afraid of our owl. So we have to fight the birds for our fruit. Oh well, we have plenty of it to share with them. Anyway, this tree does well in our heavy clay soil, loves lots of water and does very well in 95+ degrees and high humidity. The leaves are huge, much bigger than my hand. We have not seen any in our area with leaves this big.

Neutral jessicalujiang On Oct 18, 2005, jessicalujiang from San Jose, CA wrote:

Hi, I just got a fig tree. Upon reading the recommendation from varies sites on the internet, it sounds I should use a concrete pot or indoor pot with the fig tree, I am wondering if it is still ok to plant it right at my back yard. I already have a persimmon and pear tree in my back yard, and concerned if the "Strong root" of a fig tree would damage underground pipes or the foundation of my house. What would you recommend? Thank you!

Positive washingtonia On Sep 29, 2005, washingtonia from Oklahoma City, OK wrote:

In 1973 I planted a small fig tree on the south side of my house in Oklahoma City. For twenty years it didn't do much, frequently dying back to the ground in winter and producing few figs. However, beginning in the mid-nineties, at the same time we installed a lawn sprinkler system, it began to grow appreciably larger. Also, whether due to milder winters or some other reason, it ceased dying back in winter, merely dropping its leaves in the fall. Today it is a sizeable tree and produces a bushel or more of delicious figs each season, more than we can eat. It elicits more comment from visitors than any other plant we have. Each year it grows taller and broader, and we wonder what might be the limits of its growth.

Neutral daylilypender On Jul 22, 2005, daylilypender from Pender Island
Canada wrote:

Re fig resistance to deer: I wish it were true. Deer in my area of Pacific Northwest have done major damage to young fig trees. I have five varieties and hope for some harvest this year when our new 8-foot fence should give protection for the first time.

Neutral codetrance On Apr 5, 2005, codetrance from Great Falls, VA wrote:

My mom has a fig in 7a as well. (nothern VA) and they can be touchy to grow. She has it against a south facing wall next to our driveway, as they like the heat.

It can grow pretty well for a few years, but if you get a really hard freeze, it will kill it back down to the ground and you you have to wait for it to grow back to producing size again.

We never got more than a few figs every year.

Good Luck :)

Positive aviator8188 On Jul 23, 2004, aviator8188 from Murphysboro, IL (Zone 7a) wrote:

I too enjoy fig trees. There are several fig trees throughout my area. Figs are hardy here in zone 7a, with no problem at all. Fig trees are also somewhat attractive around harvesting time!

Positive palmbob On Oct 7, 2003, palmbob from Acton, CA (Zone 8b) wrote:

I am surprised by the lack of comments on fig trees... so many folks here in So Cal have one. They are extremely common in the landscape here in Los Angeles, and are great to have in your yard. We have grown several varieties and they are pretty easy growers. There don't require much in the way of water, and other than invading ants, bird pets and fig beetles (these huge, buzzin, irridescent green scarabeid beetles that terrify most people but are totally harmless... except to figs), these are pretty easy trees to keep. Only problem is soft wood and associated limb collapse now and then. Some of these become enormous, and can drop hundreds of pounds of figs in the summer, making a sticky mess. They also come in some ornamental varieties (see the photos of the variegated ones).

Positive Stonebec On Apr 29, 2003, Stonebec from Fort Worth, TX (Zone 7b) wrote:

We found 2 fig trees growing in our yard when we moved in 10 years ago. After trying 3 times to get rid of one (including pulling up by the roots and covering with the compost pile for a year) we let it stay. They are very hardy and the only problem we have is the birds getting to them before we harvest. Fruit is ready when juice beads form on bloom end. This attracts the birds, I have not had luck picking early to let ripen off tree. Pruning is needed only to eliminate crossing branches. New branches form each year in a ring around older branches. My fruit is a light brown, I do not know which variety this is. Fruit is sweet and sticky - great for preserves. Milky white sap from leaves and fruit stems may irritate skin. One tree is shielded on the north by a pine tree and the other by a privacy fence. We rarely give additional water, rain only. Best kind of fruit tree, almost no care and lots of fruit.

Neutral Horseshoe On Aug 22, 2001, Horseshoe from Efland, NC (Zone 7a) wrote:

Originating from W. Asia and the Eastern Mediterranean area this plant is considered a tropical. A deciduous tree or shrub with 3- or 5-lobed rounded leaves approximately 4 to 10 inches long and somewhat heart-shaped at the base. The fruit are borne singly, can get to 4 inches long and, depending on the variety, mature to a dark green, brown or purple.

Figs flourish on poor soil but it must be well drained and in full sun. Protection from winter wind will also benefit this plant. (It is often recommended to plant against a south-facing wall for its added warmth.) When planting you can add a bit of compost to the soil for additional humus but remember, as mentioned above, figs do better on poor soil so don't overdo it. (As an aside, figs grown on rich soil usually must have their roots confined to bear fruit. This can be accomplished by planting in a concrete box or the like and being sure to allow for drainage.)

For growing figs indoors, plants should be in containers of at least 5 gallon size, be placed in a south-facing window with plenty of light. If preferred the fig can be kept trimmed to 3 or 4 ft in height and will still bear fruit.


This plant has been said to grow in the following regions:

Decatur, Alabama
Midland City, Alabama
New Market, Alabama
Phoenix, Arizona
Taylor, Arizona
Playa Del Rey, California
Santee, California
Thousand Oaks, California
Bradenton, Florida
Brooksville, Florida
Jacksonville, Florida
Kissimmee, Florida
Lakeland, Florida
Lecanto, Florida
Loxahatchee, Florida
Pensacola, Florida
Saint Petersburg, Florida
Sarasota, Florida
Spring Hill, Florida
Lawrenceville, Georgia
Murphysboro, Illinois
Covington, Kentucky
Hessmer, Louisiana
Slaughter, Louisiana
Vacherie, Louisiana
Saucier, Mississippi
El Prado, New Mexico
New York City, New York
Durham, North Carolina
Elizabeth City, North Carolina
Wake Forest, North Carolina
Mannford, Oklahoma
Oklahoma City, Oklahoma
Portland, Oregon
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Brownsville, Texas
Cibolo, Texas
Dallas, Texas
Fort Worth, Texas
Grand Prairie, Texas
Houston, Texas (2 reports)
Mcallen, Texas
Red Oak, Texas
Rice, Texas
Issaquah, Washington
Kirkland, Washington
Eccles, West Virginia
Eglon, West Virginia

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