Thursday, October 20, 2011

Germinating the Strawberry Fig (Ficus auriculata)

    So I'm sick today. I have a really sore throat and runny red eyes. There's been a cold going around for weeks and I think I finally have it. I'm going to take it easy today so hopefully I feel a bit better by tomorrow. At least I have my blog to keep me busy. :)

    This is one of two plants I ordered, that I've tried to germinate previously.  For some reason the last time I tried, I didn't get a single sprout.  I'm not entirely sure what happened but I'm thinking I didn't keep them wet enough.  Figs are definitely one of my favourite genus of plants.  The species are very diverse, vigorous, adaptable, respond well to pruning and almost always make attractive plants.  I love that Ficus auriculata has huge leaves and produces large numbers of figs that taste similar to strawberries.  If it isn't obvious already, figs are also some of my favourite fruit!

    I have found the easiest way to germinate any species of fig is to fill an old sushi or Chinese food tray with soil and sprinkle the seeds over the surface (seeds are extremely tiny).  Most figs need light to germinate so be sure to put them in a south or west facing window.  Keep the seeds relatively moist but not wet.  They can take a tonne of water when older but damping off can be a problem for seedlings.  Then just put on the clear lid that came with the food tray and wait.  Within less than a week the first sprouts should appear with a very high germination rate after a week.  Room temperature is fine for the first few weeks, but ideally give these plants some heat and they'll grow like crazy!

    Tomorrow I move onto the Fishtail Palm (Caryota urens).


  1. Hi Andrew,
    Hope you feel better. I'm feeling a bit under the weather today as well. Yesterday I went out in the garden to fix some solar lights and got bit up by some evil insects...very painful right now. Figs are amazing. This year unfortuneatly the birds got to them before I could!! Great tips on the germination. The seeds are super super tiny. Good luck and feel better.

  2. Good tips for germinating the tiny fig seeds. Hope you are feeling better now. Thanks for stopping by my blog.

  3. @Rohrerbot hopefully you start to feel better as well. I woke up with a weird pressure in my ear, but my eyes and throat seem a bit better. I really hope they sprout these are my favourite figs.

    @lotusleaf thanks, it worked before so I hope it works again. Thanks for stopping by my blog. :)


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