When to pinch pj fig

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When to pinch pj fig

Postby Nocebo » February 13th, 2018, 7:06 pm

Have my first port jackson fig that has been repotted and all the long spindly branches cut back. It is now just starting to get new shoots. Bit confused on how long I should wait before pinching to get more back budding?
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Re: When to pinch pj fig

Postby Bougy Fan » February 13th, 2018, 7:16 pm

I would let it leaf out and grow some branches first. Defoliating will only slow down the development - you should only be doing it when you are nearing a finished tree. Give it lots of water and fertiliser.
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Re: When to pinch pj fig

Postby shibui » February 13th, 2018, 7:52 pm

There are lots of variations in the way that people grow figs.
Before you pinch the new shoots you need some shoots to pinch so let it grow a bit.
I don't think you will get any more buds at this stage. The hard pruning you have already given it will have stimulated plenty already. Now it is time to let them grow a bit. You will probably need to remove some shoots that are growing in undesirable spots. You can rub off the tiny shoots with your finger or cut them right at the base if they are bigger or too strong to rub off. Best to only have one side shoot at each place so if you see clusters of buds growing you will need to decide which one to keep and pull/cut off the others.

Most fig shoots will just grow long with very few side branches. To make them ramify to create density and plenty of side shoots on each of the new branches you will need to prune.
In development phase allow shoots to grow 4-6 leaves then cut back to 2 or 3 which will cause side shoots. repeat until density is achieved. This is a long term project so keep at it.

Agree with Bougy Fan - plenty of water and fertiliser will make it grow quicker.
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Re: When to pinch pj fig

Postby dansai » February 13th, 2018, 8:21 pm

Agree with the above to let it grow some. I see you have your location as Australia. Australia is a big place with lots of different climates.

I'm on the Mid North Coast of NSW. We should have warm temperatures here for a few months yet with a mild winter. I have just repotted some of my figs and have defoliated one that I know will produce good back budding. Another different species I have cut back to 2 or 3 leaves and have cut each leaf still on the tree down to 1/2 or less. The reason I have done this is because when defoliating this tree in the past I have lost a lot of small branches.

This works well for these trees in my climate. If I was in a climate that has cold winters I would just let this tree grow now until spring, only removing buds where multiples are growing from the same place as shibui said. If you are in a warmer climate then you may be able to do a bit of pruning in a month or so depending on growth.

The growth I see on the tree at the moment looks like it may be juvenile growth. This will produce softy leaves with soft stems. If you let this grow out, removing excess buds as suggested, you can then wire the new shoots in a month or so, let them grow for the rest of the season and remove wire and do some pruning in spring once the weather warms up. Actual timing will depend on your climate. If you update your location with even a general area we can give more specific advice.
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Re: When to pinch pj fig

Postby dansai » February 13th, 2018, 8:32 pm

The figs in question.

IMG_1737.jpg


This one I will probably trim any shoots after they have grown 3 to 5 leaves back to 2 as I want to increase shoot density.

IMG_1729.jpg


This one I will cut back the top and any branches that are well developed once or twice before winter and let the areas that I want to thicken just grow until spring.
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Re: When to pinch pj fig

Postby Nocebo » February 13th, 2018, 9:20 pm

Awesome thanks for the info guys.
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