Monday, July 28, 2008

What's in your yard?

One of the basic items I have in my yard is fig trees. Figs have been around a very long time and with good reason. They are easily grown from cuttings and usually produce at least two crops per year and in warmer climates may even produce a third crop. I’m currently fixing to harvest my second fig crop this year. Figs need to be harvested when ripe and eaten right away. They may also be dried or canned and stored for later use. They make an excellent jam. A fig paste made with a mixture of figs, wheat and corn flour, milk, and oil makes an excellent cake. They also have a variety of medicinal uses. The variety of figs I grow is the Texas Everbearing or Brown Turkey fig using the stool type method.

More information on growing and cultivating figs is available at:

http://aggie-horticulture.tamu.edu/extension/homefruit/fig/fig.html

Additional information on canning figs is available at:

http://generalhorticulture.tamu.edu/prof/Recipes/FigsCanned/FigsCanned.html

Figs contain as much as 80% water with high levels of natural sugar (dextrose). Figs are also rich in calcium, iron, magnesium, phosphorus, potassium and vitamins B and C. Figs also have high fiber content and have the most mineral content of the more common fruits. Add to these basic qualities the fact that figs are also fat-free, sodium-free and free of cholesterol and you have a combination that is hard to beat.

Additional nutrition information can be found here:

http://meccagold.com/nutrition.htm

Or here:

http://tonytantillo.com/fruits/figs.html

Figs also have numerous health benefits.

1.) The interior of figs are soft and fleshy tissue that can be used to treat dental abscesses.

2.) The milky looking juice from the stems of figs can be used to treat or remove warts. Caution: You may also need to wear gloves when harvesting your figs to prevent skin irritations from the sap or leaves.

3.) The high fiber content of figs can also help with weight loss, constipation, and the treatment of hemorrhoids.

4.) Figs are also very good for your eyesight. The main cause of vision loss in elderly persons is age-related macular degeneration or ARMD. Several servings of figs a day will help lower your risk of this disease.

5.) Figs are also a good source of calcium and are ideal for children and for individuals suffering from osteoporosis. Figs also contain potassium which helps to reduce calcium loss in the urine caused by diets high in salt.

6.) Figs also contain the nutrient called tryptophan that will promote healthy sleep. Tryptophan also aids in the circulation of the blood.

7.) Figs because of their high iron content are also good for treating people suffering from anemia (lack of iron).

Additional information can be found here:

http://www.hort.purdue.edu/newcrop/morton/fig.html

Figs have been in use for a very long time and have numerous benefits. If you haven’t planted any fig trees in your yard you may want to consider adding them.

Stay above the water line!

Riverwalker

16 comments:

Marine 83 said...

Great post. Question, how many trees do you have and what is your average yield? I am always curious about yield for survival purposes. Thanks.

riverwalker said...

To: marine 83

I have a large tree (16 feet / 12+ years old) and two smaller ones (8 feet / 5+ years old) grown from cuttings of the larger one. The small ones usually gives us about two buckets full with enough to make 10 or 12 pints of jam. There are only two of us at home now and we don't use all they produce. I really haven't kept track of their production, as we've always had more than enough from what we do get that we can even give some to the neighbors.

RW

Marine 83 said...

Thanks for the info.

Kim said...

I love figs. I had no idea just how good for they are for you. Great info!

riverwalker said...

To: marine 83

You're welcome.

BTW,The birds really like them too.

RW

riverwalker said...

To: kim

Thanks.

I remember eating "Fig Newtons" a lot when I was a kid.

RW

Marie said...

We don't have fig trees in our backyard, but from the sounds of it they'd be wonderful to have. We do have raspberries that are finally getting ripe, and a few strawberry plants that aren't very high-yield. Hoping for more next year...

Mayberry said...

I FIGgered as much. Ha ha ha ha ha!
Great post RW.

Kenneth H. said...

I am a big fan of the fig although I never considered it. Always something we over look. Give me something to read up on and learn about. Thanks!

riverwalker said...

To: marie

The wife has tried strawberries but not much luck in growing them. We have raspbery bushes but there not doing too good right now with the lack of rain. Thanks marie!

RW

riverwalker said...

To: mayberry
Good to see you ain't lost your sense of humour!

RW

riverwalker said...

To: kenneth h.

Hope this was a good reminder. Appreciate the comment!

RW

Patricia said...

Wow--terrific post, RW. I really appreciate information like this! Wish we had some fig trees. We do have persimmon trees and a walnut with lots of nuts on it...
Thanks,
Handmaiden

riverwalker said...

To: patricia

Fig trees can be container grown or grown in a greenhouse for those who are subject to colder climates.

Thanks patricia!

RW

fallout11 said...

Excellent post, sir! I have two turkey fig trees growing in my yard, but just learned a lot about them.
They have done well here, which is more than I can say for the raspberries (died) or blueberries (mostly dead).

riverwalker said...

To: fallout11

Don't feel like the Lone Ranger! My berry vines died also due to lack of rain and the heat. The figs are doing good with a little watering. Thanks for commenting!

RW

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