What is a fig and what is remarkable about a fig tree
Fig is a medium-sized tree with a smooth crown and spreading branches, with a unique flowering and fruiting system. The plant is considered one of the oldest fruit crops and is mentioned in the Bible. It was with fig leaves that Adam and Eve covered their nakedness when they left Paradise Eden. Figs, figs or figs are the fruit of the female tree with aromatic, sweet pulp and many seeds crunching on the teeth. We will tell you everything about figs: about the tree, leaves, distribution, flowering, structure and appearance of fruits.
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What are figs and fig tree
Common fig, or fig tree (lat.Ficus carica) - deciduous tree from the genus Ficus, Mulberry family. It is also called the Carian ficus, since Caria, a mountainous area in Asia Minor, is considered its homeland. The culture is widespread in the Carpathians, Mediterranean countries, Central Asia, the Caucasus, the Crimean peninsula, the Black Sea coast - there trees are cultivated as a valuable fruit crop. In our latitudes, the plant is grown like a bush.
Fig is the oldest culture that was grown in Arabia, Phenicia, Syria and Egypt. In the 13th century, the fig tree was cultivated as a valuable agricultural crop in the kingdom of Pylos. In North and South America, the plant appeared at the end of the 16th century.
Still, are figs a fruit or a berry? According to the botanical description, neither one nor the other. Formally, the edible part of a fig is a ripe flower, so it is correct to call it a compound fruit.... In another way, figs are called "wine berry" or "fig" fruit - hence the confusion. Other names are fig, fig tree, Smyrna berry.
Figs are mentioned in the Bible and the Koran... The main book of Muslims describes how the first man, tempted by a woman, tasted the fruit of the fig tree. The Bible tells how the first people driven out of Eden shyly covered themselves with fig leaves. The expression "fig leaf" over time has acquired several meanings: unsuccessful concealment of shortcomings and a meaningless, meaningless document.
Interesting! In ancient Greece, the fig tree was considered a phallic symbol. The famous gesture fico (thumb sandwiched between the middle and forefinger) in the Middle Ages was used against the evil eye and at the same time was considered obscene.
Botanical description of the plant
A fig tree - what is it from a botanical point of view? it medium-sized tree 10-15 m high from the genus Ficus with smooth gray bark... The life span of a plant is 30-300 years. The roots of the tree are able to penetrate deeply even into the densest stone soil and take root on mountain slopes. In favorable conditions, the branches form a beautiful spreading crown with dense foliage.
Fig leaf - large, alternate, 3-5-7-palmate-lobed or separated with drooping stipules... The structure is rigid. The fig tree sheds its foliage in early winter and new buds bloom in early April.
Interesting on the site:
Short generative shoots are formed in the axils of fig leaves, giving inflorescences of two types - figs and caprifigs. Fig flowers, invisible to the eye, develop inside these shoots.
Figs grow into globular or oval formations... At the top there is an opening with an internal cavity. It contains small heterosexual flowers. Caprifigs - small inflorescences - contain flowers of the male type.
Fig fruits, with the exception of hybrid parthenocarps, have a unique type of pollination... The plant forms 3 types of inflorescences. In one, the eggs and larvae of tiny black wasps develop. Insects do the responsible job of transferring pollen from the male tree to the female tree.
Sami blastophages without figs are unable to reproduce... In the spring, the female is fertilized by a wingless male inside the male inflorescence, after which she crawls out through the upper opening and collects pollen from the male flower with her little body. Then the female looks for where to lay eggs and tries to populate the second type of inflorescences that bear fruit. However, their structure does not allow females to lay eggs in them. While the wasp is looking for a new home, it manages to pollinate the female flowers, and lays eggs in the third type of inflorescence. At the beginning of autumn, a new generation of females appears, which makes clutches in a flower house. In the spring the cycle is repeated. The pollination process is called caprification.
Interesting!Paleontological evidence suggests that this system developed 34 million years ago.
Fruiting occurs 2-3 years after planting... The plant's development cycle is slow, fruiting lasts about 9 months.
Pear-shaped, sweet and juicy inflorescences with small seeds inside are formed from female inflorescences... When chewed, they crunch on the teeth like sand. Figs are covered with a thin skin with slight pubescence. The top has a peephole - a hole covered with scales. The color of the stems depends on the variety and is yellow, dark blue, purple, black-blue and yellow-green.
What is a fig? The section shows a red flesh with many seeds. The aroma is intense, sweetish and pleasant. The taste is sweet, not sugary, unique, slightly watery. Dried figs are even sweeter and more flavorful.
Features of fruiting fig tree
Fruiting of a fig tree is impossible without caprification - a unique pollination system... For a long time, Carl Linnaeus himself puzzled over the mystery of the appearance of the fruits, but he did not manage to solve it to the end. However, the process of the appearance of fruits was unraveled by the ancient Greeks. They collected capriphages and hung them on trees with female inflorescences, like garlands on a Christmas tree. The Greeks learned to keep them at low temperatures and traded them.
The fruiting of fig trees is divided into three cycles:
- In April before the appearance of foliage, small young fruits are formed. They are called "early figs" - a symbol of the end of winter. They are not particularly juicy, but they are suitable for consumption.
- In the end of May on leafy trees juicy and extremely tasty figs with a short shelf life ripen.
- In August late figs are ripening, suitable for fresh consumption, making jam and dried fruits.
Fig is a deciduous plant native to the tropics, producing healthy, juicy and aromatic fruits. The skin color varies from yellow-green to black-blue depending on the variety. Pear-shaped fruits, called figs, figs, figs, ripen exclusively on female trees. The pollination process is impossible without blastophagous wasps that reproduce on male trees. It is these insects that carry pollen on their bodies.