OK, I may as well admit it, I am not only disappointed, I am downright upset. After waiting a year to join the rarified list of Fig Growers Anonymous, or at least cause a modicum of jealousy in other fig lovers, I must admit defeat.
I envisioned bright shiny jars of dark sweet jam lined up on my pantry shelves. After a bit of mashing, boiling with a little sugar, and packing in cute little glass jars, this exotic fruit would ensure my reputation as a figmaster.
After a burgeoning beginning this spring, I watched frequently for signs of immature green figs, but throughout the summer, they never grew any larger! Finally, at a large family garden party I spied one ripe fig! I asked my Chicago grandson standing nearby if he liked figs. I was shocked to find that he had never tasted one, so I gave it to him. Turns out, it was the only one it had! And I don’t know if he even liked it.
I should have known he had never eaten one, because while in Paris a few years ago with his mother and her sister, I bought three of the largest, most decadent looking figs from a neighborhood produce market, and they refused them, showing me they never introduced their children to one of life’s most delectable treats. Of course, I admit, I probably had told them they were poison, (just like the avacado) just so I could eat them all myself. What goes round comes round as they say.
During my transient childhood in southern California, there seemed to be a fig tree in every garden. I learned early that they were easy to climb, and a good place to avoid chores while stuffing myself with fruit.
Tomatoes and oranges are ripe now, and begging to be picked. I do wish the squirrels would eat the ones they knock off the tree though. I think they sit up in the trees watching me rake up all the split fruit on the ground and wait until dark to knock off some more.
There’s always next year for figs, and meanwhile, a neighbor picks bushels every day and leaves a plate for me.
“I once had a garden filled with flowers that grew only on dark thoughts, but they need constant attention & one day I decided I had better things to do.” Brian Andreas