Winterizing Plants in Pots
Hi Kim, I attended one of your classes at the Brooklyn Botanic Garden, I hope you don’t mind my asking you a question.
Just returned from traveling in South America and missed timely wrapping the fig tree growing since this summer on my terrace in a pot. In the meantime there were numerous sub-freezing temperatures. Is it too late to wrap the fig i.e. is the damage done or would wrapping still be useful? Would appreciate your input.
Thanks for contacting me. I hope you enjoyed your trip to South America, even if your fig tree didn’t get to come along to enjoy the warmer weather!
I am no expert on fig trees, my expertise is with native plants, however, there are some basic principles which apply here. By wrapping, you are trying to create a warmer micro-climate for a plant which is not hardy in your region. Essentially you are trying to prevent the plant from freezing above and below ground, which would kill this tropical/subtropical plant. Since the tree has already gone unprotected through several sub-freezing temperatures, it may be too late, and the damage may be done, but why not try to save the plant? You have nothing to lose.
I would wrap the plant asap, heel the pot into a nice deep pile of mulch, and follow the tips in these articles on winterizing fig trees in northern climates:
Good luck! Let me know if you are successful, come spring.
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