When Spring Came, I Cut My Fig Tree Down. Then, God Took Over…

Celeste-Fig-2010

In the year of Our Lord, 2010…

A couple of years back, I shared a post here about my love of figs and how my experience with a fig tree kinda, sorta, mirrored the parable found in Luke’s gospel. Remember it? Good times.

Two seasons later, in May of this year, I had to cut it down. The winter of 2013 was pretty hard on it, I reckon. When the snows finally melted for good, and the sun started shining more, and April moved into May, the little fig that could, didn’t. Didn’t leaf out, that is.

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And then I noticed it appeared to have sprung a leak.

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Lots of leaks.

Turns out it was attacked by Asian ambrosia beetles. I learned that they like to bore into trees that are weakened, and my fig, having survived a serious pelting in a hail storm in 2011, was probably marginal despite its healthy appearance before last year’s record setting winter arrived.

This is the beetle’s sawdust mark.

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How about a close up?

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So I did the only thing that I could do, as once they are inside a tree, it’s done for. I cut it down, sort of like how Old Yeller had to go when he got rabid.

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I noticed some green shoots down low, though, so I protected them with a board while cutting away the main trunk.

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Shel Silverstein, eat your heart out!

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I trimmed back those two runners until I could see green on their trunks (when wet) as well. And then I figured I’d just let nature take its course. By my count, the remnant had about twelve runners. This time around, I was hoping my fig tree would become a fig bush.

Now it’s time for the amazing part. The little fig bush grew.

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and grew,

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higher,

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and lusher,

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and taller.

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Round about this time, the spring showers gave way to summer thunderstorms, and the fledgling green trunks needed a little support to withstand the hard rain that falls.

Human intervention time. The prophet Amos would be proud!

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The chicken wire would serve as a backbone until the green trunks started to bark over, you see? Growth continued apace.

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Time for a photograph with the guy who didn’t have much to do with all this, but is happy to witness it all the same.

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So far, there is no evidence that any fruit is forthcoming. I hope that will be the case next year.

I do have 5 little figs coming off of a runner that I air layered off the main trunk last season.

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In fact, I have two air layered trees, one which almost died, and one that spent the winter in my garage. The 5 little figs are from the garaged tree that I planted this past spring.

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There is a parable in all of this, don’t you think?

God is good.

From stump to this, in three months.

From stump to this, in three months.


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