Growing Figs from Seeds in a Pot

Figs (Ficus carica) are popular not just for their sweet fruits but also for their ornamental appeal. While many growers propagate figs from cuttings, growing them from seeds can be an adventurous and rewarding process. Let’s explore how to cultivate fig trees from the seeds found in fresh and dried fig fruits.

fig web

Understanding Fig Seeds:

Fresh figs naturally have a multitude of tiny seeds inside them. Dried figs, on the other hand, will still have these seeds, but the drying process may affect their germination rate. Thus, fresh fig seeds usually have a better chance at sprouting than those from dried figs. Nevertheless, it’s worth trying both if you’re up for an experiment.

Step-by-Step Guide to Growing Fig Trees from Seeds:

1. Harvesting Seeds:

  • Fresh Figs: Cut the fig in half and scoop out the seeds using a small spoon or the tip of a knife.
  • Dried Figs: Soak the dried figs in water for a few hours to soften them. Once soft, slice them open and extract the seeds.

2. Preparation for Germination:

  • Rinse the seeds under cool water to remove any pulp or residue.
  • Place the seeds on a paper towel and allow them to dry for 1-2 days.

3. Planting the Seeds:

  • Use a well-draining potting mix. Mix in some sand or perlite to enhance drainage.
  • Fill a pot with the potting mix, leaving about an inch from the top.
  • Moisten the soil but ensure it’s not soggy.
  • Place the seeds on the surface and lightly press them into the soil. You don’t need to bury them deep, just enough so they have good contact with the soil.
  • Cover the pot with clear plastic or a plastic bag to create a mini greenhouse effect.

4. Caring for the Seeds and Seedlings:

  • Place the pot in a warm location with indirect light. A temperature of around 70°F (21°C) is ideal.
  • Regularly check the soil’s moisture, ensuring it remains damp but not waterlogged.
  • After a few weeks, you should see seedlings sprouting. Once they appear, remove the plastic covering.
  • As the seedlings grow, ensure they receive adequate sunlight. Rotate the pot occasionally for even growth.

5. Transplanting Seedlings:

  • When the seedlings have at least two sets of true leaves, they’re ready to be transplanted into individual pots.
  • Use a mix of potting soil, compost, and a little sand or perlite.
  • Be gentle when transplanting to avoid damaging the delicate roots.

6. Growing and Care:

  • Figs are sun-lovers, so place them in a location where they get at least 6-8 hours of sunlight daily.
  • Water them moderately. Allow the top inch of soil to dry out before watering again.
  • Fertilize young fig trees with a balanced, water-soluble fertilizer once a month during the growing season.

Tips and Tricks:

  • Patience is Key: It might take several weeks or even months for the seeds to germinate, especially those from dried figs.
  • Pollination: Figs can be tricky when it comes to pollination. Some varieties require a specific wasp to pollinate, while others are self-fertile.
  • Pot Size: As your fig tree grows, ensure you upgrade the pot size to accommodate its growth.
a plant of figs in a pot

Growing figs from seeds can be a lengthy process but is truly rewarding. With care and patience, you’ll have a beautiful fig tree that might one day produce its own sweet fruits. Whether you’re using seeds from fresh figs or giving dried fig seeds a shot, the journey of growing a fig tree from seed is a gardening adventure worth embarking on.

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