Figs are harvested and stored by being cut off the tree as soon as they begin to feel soft, being dried out naturally in the sun or eaten fresh like an apple. Keep dried figs in jars and fresh figs in the refrigerator with advice from a sustainable gardener in this free video on gardening.
Hi, this is Yolanda Vanveen and in this segment we're going to talk about how to harvest and store figs. Now fig trees are really easy to grow, and when I lived in Portland we had a community garden where we had a beautiful fig tree that produced figs all summer long. And they're really easy to harvest. And you'll find if you have a fig tree you actually get two crops of figs. You'll get the first crop in June/July, and that is off of last year's growth because they'll set buds. And you'll have figs off of last year's growth first. A lot of times those aren't as sweet because they haven't had a lot of sun. The best figs are the ones that come into August and September, into the fall. And those are usually the figs from this year's growth. And they'll be very, very sweet and tender. And the best time to actually harvest them is when they start drooping, or they start looking a little bit on the soft side. They'll look like a really hard apple at first, and they'll kind of turn a little bit purple and get a little softer, and if you feel them and they feel a little bit spongy then you know it's time to harvest. And so you can just pull them off of cut them off, but I've found it's easier to actually kind of cut them off because they don't alway fall right off. But then at the same time, they naturally just fall off the tree when they're ripe anyway. But at that point they're usually too ripe so it's best to get them in that in between time. And you can keep them fresh, and you can eat them fresh just like you can an apple. They're very stringy, very sweet fruit. But, my neighbor would always dry them out just like prunes, and she would have the dried figs. And just lay them out on paper or glass in the hot full sun, and you'll find that they'll dry up and you can just cut them up into pieces. And at that point, if you want to dry them, it's easy to store. You just store them in a paper bag or a plastic bag, or if you're storing them fresh you can just leave them like an apple in your refrigerator and they'll last for a quite a while--up to a month or two months even. But the easiest way is to dry them and then turn around and either put them in a jar or a paper bag, and that way you can enjoy them all winter long.