Pruning Fig Trees

One of my favorite jobs in the garden is pruning young trees. Last year, one of my first blog posts was about pruning the figs at my dad’s house. It’s nearly a year later, and it’s time to prune the figs again.

It’s also fun to look back on photos from last year and see how the trees have grown. Here is one of the fig trees in March 2020:

And the same tree this year:

This next tree is in the front yard, and I don’t have a photo of it from 2020:

Lastly, another tree from 2020:

And the same tree a year later:

Hmm….okay…not quite as dramatic a difference as I was hoping. It doesn’t help that I didn’t take the photo from the same angle.

I noticed, as I was pruning, that where we made the “stubbing” cuts last year, the trees seem to have sent out water sprouts….

The stubbing cuts were supposed to keep the tree from getting too tall, and to encourage more sideways growing branches…this is the exact opposite of what we wanted to happen. Did we do the stubbing cuts wrong? Is there something I’m missing?

One thought on “Pruning Fig Trees”

  1. Yes, a cut should be made as flush as possible next to a future bud, leaving no stub at all. On side branches, you should be able to see a ‘cushion’, a slight swelling beneath the branch, where the cambium grows. Cut the branch right above that cushion, which will eventually grow and heal the wound. If a cut is large, a special anti-fungal horticultural paint is recommended to seal the wound.

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