Shade tree which gives edible fruits with medicinal value.
SPECIALTY OF ISRAEL FIG
There are more than 700 identified varieties of figs. Among very few varieties are popular in India. The Israel Fig is an average size fig and having good taste compared to other varieties. The leaves are small compared to other varieties and much suitable for commercial plantation. The productivity of Israel fig is much better and the fruit having a slightly red and black color when it ripens.
ABOUT A FIG TREE (athi pazham)
Fig (Ficus carica) is an Asian species that is from the mulberry family. It is an important crop in those areas where it is grown commercially. The origin of Fig fruit is from the Middle East and Western Asia. It has been sought out and cultivated since ancient times and is now widely grown throughout the world, both for its fruit and as an ornamental and shade plant.
Also, these shade trees keeping the sun off of our homes and windows during the summer can end up saving us both money and energy, because we can avoid some of the heating effects and keep our homes cooler, to begin with, so less energy is required to keep them comfortable. And one of the best ways to do that is by planting shade trees in the right location around our home, where they can block the sun from streaming in our windows and heating our walls and roofs during certain times of the day.
Growing space both above and below ground should be considered when selecting a tree to plant. Too often allowances are not made for the increased size of the tree when it matures. Most problems can be avoided by selecting the proper tree species for the available planting space.
- Dig a hole/pit 3 to 4 times wider than the container (Normally 60cm X 60cm X 60cm is recommended). Fill the pit with top fertile soil to allow for proper root growth. Avoid clay type soil to refill the pit.
- Add 250 gm Rock Phosphate or Born Meal and 3 to 5 kg Cow dung or compost in the topsoil of the pit and mix it thoroughly (Thorough mixing of manure with soil is very important because direct contact of manure with the roots of the plant will cause the damage of roots and plant).
- Make a small hole in the pit and carefully remove the plant from the container/pot or polybag keeping the soil around the roots intact. Don‘t yank the plant out of the pot or polybag as this can separate the roots from the tree. Polybags can be easily removed by cutting it by a knife and pots can be removed easily by hitting slightly at the top edge of the pot.
- Set the plant in the middle of the hole. Avoid planting the tree too deep. Keep the base of the trunk is slightly above ground level. Using some soil, secure the tree in a straight position, then fill and firmly pack the hole with the original soil, making sure there aren‘t any air pockets.
- If the plant is Grafted or Budded make sure the grafted or budded portion of the plant is above the soil. Do not allow to touch the grafted or budded portion in the soil as it burns the skin of the plant.
- Create a water-holding basin around the pit and give the plant a good watering. After the water has soaked in, spread protective mulch 2–4 inches deep in a 3-foot diameter area around the base of the tree, but not touching the trunk. Also provide a stich as a support for the plant, if needed.
- The soil and mulch around your plant should be kept moist but not soggy. During dry weather, initially water the plant once in two days and after one month of planting water every 7 to 10 days during the first year.
- Remove any tags and labels from the tree as these will affect the tree as it grows. You may need to prune any broken or dead branches. For Budded or Grafted plants, it is very important that do not allow the growth of offshoots under the grafted/budded portion. Allow the growth of budded/grafted scions only.
- Do not use chemical fertilizer or any other chemicals on your newly planted trees. Such products will kill your young trees. If needed you can add chemical fertilizers in small quantity (generally below 100gm) after two to three months of planting with sufficient irrigation.
- Do not overwater or allow rainwater so much that you see standing water in the pit area of the plant. It will damage the plant’s roots and results in the die of your plant.