27. February 2019

Propagating figs with cuttings

Growing figs at home is a real luxury if you live as far north as I do. I can't get enough of figs now. Propagating figs with the help of cuttings is easy. This is how I do it.

Kruka med flera sticklingar nedstuckna längs krukans kant. Propagating figs, a pot with cuttings

Propagating figs with cuttings is really easy. These summer cuttings have just started to root in this pot.


Propagating figs is really easy if you use cuttings. A brand new fig plant is a really great going away gift too. Any friends interested in gardening would be happy to get a nice little fig plant! There's something exotic about figs and having your own plant at home makes you dream about harvesting these sweet unusual fruits at home. Just imagine!


Take cuttings in winter

Winter is the perfect time to start propagating figs. The plants are resting this time of the year. If you cut your plants in late winter or spring, the figs are said to "bleed". It's supposed to be easier to cut them in summer. I have honestly not had any issues cutting them throughout the year though. Try it and see what works for you.

Take cuttings (not too thick) and cut them into around 8 inch (20 centimeter) long pieces. Cut them right above a little bud where a leaf was growing. A new little stem will start to grow from this point.

Put the cutting in a pot filled with moist soil and leave it there. New shoots will start to grow from this cutting.

Put the cutting somewhere cool in winter and let it "wake up" to warmer temperatures in its own time. So, don't put the cutting in room temperature during winter. If you want the plant to get going sooner though, you could always leave it under a grow light. This will help stimulate growth and root development. Don't forget to keep the soil moist!


En genomskinlig låda med fyra krukor med kala pinnar i jord. Propagating figs, a see-through box with four pots.

Little buds are developing on my winter cuttings. I put them in a cool space under a grow light .


Take cuttings in summer

Cut off the parts that you want to remove anyway and then cut them into smaller pieces. Put them along the edges of a pot filled with soil. Keep the soil moist all the time, the cuttings will dry out if you don't. It's easier if you keep the cuttings in a spot with shade.


Read more about cuttings here: Basil cuttings


Närbild på en kruka med små sticklingar. Propagating figs, close-up of a pot with cuttings.

The figs start to root quickly when the soil is warm. Every stem will turn into an individual little plant in notime. Propagating figs is easy!


Put the fig cuttings in water

Fig cuttings can develop roots if you put them in a regular glass of water too. But this method is a bit more difficult in winter since the plants are resting and shouldn't have full access to water. You can do this in summer though.


Prune the fig plant

The fig plant might grow really tall and leggy after the roots develop. Make sure to cut the shoot off a few buds above the ground so that the plant can branch off. You can use these cuttings to get yet another plant if you want to. You might want to take care of the plant by almost "sculpting" it the way you want. Prune it or let it grow like a little bush.

If you are completely new to figs, there are a few things you need to know. The first is that fig leaves can smell a bit like cat urine! So if you don't have cats and feel confused about what that smell is all about, it's probably the figs.

I'm going to write a bit more about figs here on the blog, specifically how I'm growing them in my polytunnel. Good luck propagating figs!
/Sara Bäckmo


3 responses to “Propagating figs with cuttings”

  1. Stephen Wilson says:

    Thanks for the article. I've never tried rooting fig cuttings in water in the summer. Only cuttings in winter when the tree is dormant. A good trick is to place a heat mat under the cuttings in winter, to trigger root growth before the plant starts to leaf out when warmer temps arrive. Then when the plant leafs out the roots can handle the growth.

  2. Alita says:

    With regard to the smell of the plants, I have discovered that some people think that they smell like cat wee and others think that they smell of coconuts. I am one of the latter, I love going into my polytunnel on a warm day and experiencing all the different plant smells. . 🙂

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