Steven Biggs is the man to talk to about figs. He is growing over twenty-five varieties of figs in pots in his back yard in Toronto. I spent some time talking to him recently about how he handles growing this normally warm climate plant. He’s just written a book on his fig growing secrets this year, How To Grow Figs Where You Think You Can’t that is chock-full of technical growing info to help any gardener that wants to grow their own figs. I’m told a fresh fig right off the tree tastes like nothing else.
Leafing through his book, I realized that the information in it would be helpful for growing many other non cold-hardy plants like citrus trees and certain roses. Where there’s a will, there’s a way. Steven is growing a lemon tree in a pot and got about twenty lemons off it last summer. One of Steven’s tips is to sink his pots into the ground for the growing season. This helps regulate the temperature of the soil in the pots, and would be good for other tropical plants like oleander and hibiscus too. Keeping the pot cool underground keeps roots healthier and the plants don’t dry out as quickly as well. If you are interested in growing your own fruit tree, or permaculture, a fig might be a good place to start.