NJ is known for its fresh produce … good luck finding these
We grow a lot of great fruits and veggies in New Jersey, but one fruit that is very hard to grow here is figs.
There are some old-timers who grow them in their backyards.
In many Italian neighborhoods in New Jersey, you will find a prized fig tree or two or seven or eight.
My dad grew them from cutting a tree his father brought over when he emigrated from Calabria, Italy.
The climate is not really conducive to their growth and flourishing. Many people cut the trees way back in the fall and cover them for winter.
It's a special process and my dad went to great lengths to ensure they made it through every winter.
This time of year you will notice them at specialty markets in California and at some local farmers markets you can get lucky enough to find some from small local growers.
It's a fruit that most people around here are not used to and may be considered an acquired taste. If you grew up eating them, they are a precious commodity.
There is one guy in New Jersey that is the king of figs and fig growers. His name is Bill Muzychko from Flemington and he gives classes on how to grow the trees in large pots and how to store them in your garage over the winter.
I visited him about 10 years ago at his place.
If you want to know anything about figs or how to grow them, Bill is THE number one source in New Jersey. He is a retired New Jersey State employee who has turned his passion into a virtual Fig University.
If you want to grow your own, don't do anything until you see Bill Muzychko. If you want fresh figs, check your local farm markets right now. They are coming ripe and should only last about another month. Enjoy!
NJ is known for its fresh produce...good luck finding these
Opinions expressed in the post above are those of New Jersey 101.5 talk show host Dennis Malloy only.
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