Hardy Chicago (Ficus carica)
How do you think figs entered into our lives? Well there is an Italian in the wood pile. Diane's Father buried the figs over winter in Chicago (zone 5).
What a good time he had when he moved to zone 8 near Memphis, he had figs everywhere. So that is how we got started, cuttings, pass along plants, getting excited and collecting varieties from nurseries and friends. Here are some of our selections.
This plant was acquired this variety from an Italian grower in Chicago a number of years ago and shared it with fig enthusiasts. It now has also become a commercial variety and proven to be excellent fig. Hardy Chicago does resemble Brown Turkey a lot, but the leaves and fruit are distinguishable.
It is much hardier than other figs. The fruit is small to medium with blackish/purple skin and strawberry pulp. Small eye. Very good fresh, dried or in preserves. Responds well to oiling (a method of inducing ripening of immature fruit in late Fall). Well-adapted in the Eastern U.S. and deserves trials in the Northwest.
For us this one sometimes dies back to the ground but still produces on new wood the same year. The debate will go on about the hardiness of figs. We are zone 7 and all our potted figs have survived the last couple of winters here pretty much unprotected in containers. Of course there always can come the unforeseen killer frost that will wipe them all out. So love them and grow them till that happens, then start over with new varieties.
SORRY CANNOT SHIP TO CA.