Can figs grow from seed?

Answered by Frank Schwing

Growing figs from seed is indeed possible, but it’s important to note that not all fig trees grown from seed will produce fruit. This is because fig trees have both male and female varieties, and only the female trees produce edible figs. Therefore, when growing figs from seed, there is a chance that you may end up with a male tree that does not bear fruit.

To start growing figs from seed, you will need viable seeds. These can be collected from ripe fig fruits or purchased from a reputable seed supplier. It’s important to ensure that the seeds are fresh and have not been treated with any chemicals or preservatives.

Once you have obtained the seeds, you can begin the germination process. One method is to soak the seeds in water for 24 hours prior to planting. This helps to soften the seed coat and improve germination rates. After soaking, plant the seeds in a well-draining potting mix, covering them with a thin layer of soil.

Maintaining the right conditions is crucial for successful germination. Fig seeds require warmth and humidity to sprout. It is recommended to keep the pots in a warm location, ideally around 70-80°F (21-27°C). Placing the pots in a greenhouse or using a heating mat can help maintain the required temperature.

To create a humid environment, cover the pots with a plastic bag or place them inside a propagator. This helps to retain moisture and promote germination. However, it’s important to monitor the moisture levels and avoid excessive watering, as this can lead to rotting.

Germination time can vary, but typically fig seeds take around 2-4 weeks to sprout. Once the seedlings emerge, remove the plastic cover and provide them with ample sunlight. Fig trees thrive in full sun, so placing them in a sunny location or using grow lights can help them grow strong and healthy.

As the seedlings grow, it’s important to provide proper care and attention. Transplant them into larger pots as they outgrow their containers, ensuring they have enough space for their roots to develop. Use a well-draining potting mix and water the plants regularly, allowing the soil to dry out slightly between waterings.

It’s worth noting that fig trees grown from seed may not produce fruit for several years, as it takes time for them to mature. Additionally, there is no guarantee that a seed-grown fig tree will produce quality fruit, as the characteristics can vary. For more consistent and reliable fruit production, it is generally recommended to grow fig trees from cuttings taken from established, fruit-bearing trees.

While fig trees can be grown from seed, it’s important to be aware that not all seedlings will produce edible figs. However, if you enjoy the process of growing plants from seed and are willing to wait and see what type of tree you end up with, it can be a rewarding endeavor. Just remember to provide the right conditions, be patient, and enjoy the journey of nurturing your fig tree from a tiny seedling to a mature plant.