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9 Best Fig Trees To Grow For Fruit In Less Time (1st Year)

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Home » Fruit Trees » 9 Best Fig Trees To Grow For Fruit In Less Time (1st Year)

I have seven fig trees in my garden and I believe they should be a staple fruit tree for all.

Figs are great as they fruit very quickly so you don’t have to wait too long to eat your rewards.

Most of the options below fruit in the first year after planting with the rest in the second.

Take a look at the Fig tree options below that cover different USDA planting zones and also different looking and tasting fruit.

Find the Fig tree perfect for your yard today!

Beautiful Fig Trees That Produce Fruit Quickly

1. Chicago Hardy – Ficus carica ‘Chicago Hardy’

The Chicago Hardy Fig tree is an exceptional choice for fruit tree enthusiasts, especially those in colder climates seeking a hardy and prolific producer.

With its resilience to cold temperatures, dropping as low as 10 degrees Fahrenheit, this variety ensures a bountiful harvest of medium-sized, sweet figs with dark mahogany exteriors and rich purple interiors.

Adaptable to both ground planting and container culture, it promises a generous yield, potentially over 100 pints of figs, from late summer into early fall.

Its rapid growth and easy maintenance, coupled with the fact that it can bear fruit in its first year, make the Chicago Hardy Fig a must-have for gardeners aiming for both ornamental beauty and practical yield.

  • USDA Growing Zones: 5-10 Outside, 3-11 Patio
  • Mature Tree Size: 10 – 30 ft tall, 10-30 ft wide
  • Time to Bear First Fruit: Can Fruit 1st Year
  • Avg Growth Rate: Moderate-Fast
  • Chill Hours: None Required
  • Self Fertile: Yes

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2. Brown Turkey – Ficus carica ‘Brown Turkey’

The Brown Turkey Fig tree is a versatile and resilient addition to home gardens, offering a bounty of medium-sized, sweet figs ideal for a variety of culinary uses.

Cold-hardy in USDA zones 5-9, this variety stands out for its adaptability to cooler climates, unlike its Mediterranean counterparts.

The tree’s attractive deciduous nature, combined with its magnificent light-green leaves and smooth gray bark, adds ornamental value year-round.

Whether planted in the ground or grown in a container for regions with harsh winters, the Brown Turkey Fig promises easy maintenance, fast growth, and delicious fruit that can be harvested in the first year.

  • USDA Growing Zones: 5-9 Outside, 3-11 Patio
  • Mature Tree Size: 10-30 ft tall, 12-25 ft wide
  • Time to Bear First Fruit: Can Fruit 1st Year
  • Avg Growth Rate: Moderate-Fast
  • Chill Hours: None Required
  • Self Fertile: Yes

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3. LSU Purple – Ficus carica ‘LSU Purple’

The LSU Purple Fig tree, a result of meticulous breeding at Louisiana State University, offers a bounty of sweet, lush purple figs.

A vigorous grower with an upright habit, the LSU Purple is pest and disease-resistant, self-pollinating, and thrives in heat.

Ideal for growing in USDA zones 7-10, this fig tree can bear fruit in its first year, making it a fast-growing, productive choice for fig enthusiasts.

It adapts well to container gardening, allowing those in colder regions to enjoy its delicious fruit by moving it indoors during winter.

  • USDA Growing Zones: 7-10 Outside, 3-11 Patio
  • Mature Tree Size: 8-10 ft tall, 8-10 ft wide
  • Time to Bear First Fruit: Can Fruit 1st Year
  • Avg Growth Rate: Moderate-Fast
  • Chill Hours: None Required
  • Self Fertile: Yes

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4. Little Miss Figgy™ – Ficus carica ‘Little Miss Figgy’

The Little Miss Figgy™ is the ideal choice for those with limited space who desire a bountiful fig harvest.

Despite its compact size, this tree is a prolific producer of delicious figs, offering fruit in the very first year.

Perfect for colder climates, it thrives in containers and can be moved indoors during winter, needing only a sunny window to continue thriving.

The Little Miss Figgy™ delivers sweet, strawberry-red fleshed figs with minimal care, making it an excellent addition for home gardeners seeking fresh figs for eating, baking, or drying.

  • USDA Growing Zones: 7-11 Outside
  • Mature Tree Size: 4-6 ft tall, 3-4 ft wide
  • Time to Bear First Fruit: Can Fruit 1st Year
  • Avg Growth Rate: Moderate
  • Chill Hours: None Required
  • Self Fertile: Yes

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5. Celeste Fig – Ficus carica ‘Celeste’

The Celeste Fig tree, affectionately known as the “sugar fig,” offers home gardeners a delightfully sweet harvest with minimal effort.

This variety stands out with its violet-skinned fruit and rose-colored flesh, known for its rich flavor.

It is a low-maintenance choice suitable for container gardening or small spaces due to its compact size.

Requiring full sun and well-drained soil, the Celeste Fig thrives in a broad range of climates and is cold-hardy, pest, and disease-resistant, including resilience against fig rust.

With its self-fertile nature, gardeners can expect fruit in the very first year without the need for cross-pollination.

  • USDA Growing Zones: 6-10 Outside, 3-11 Patio
  • Mature Tree Size: 5-15 ft tall, 5-15 ft wide
  • Time to Bear First Fruit: Can Fruit 1st Year
  • Avg Growth Rate: Medium-Fast
  • Chill Hours: None Required
  • Self Fertile: Yes

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6. Black Mission – Ficus carica ‘Black Mission’

The Black Mission Fig tree, hailing from Spain, is cherished for its exceptionally sweet fruits.

With its striking purplish-black skin and vibrant red flesh, it’s not only a treat for the taste buds but also a feast for the eyes.

This tree thrives in sunny spots and generously offers its bounty twice a year, making it perfect for fresh snacking, jam-making, or drying for later enjoyment.

Ideally suited for small gardens or container living, this fig tree is self-sufficient, producing fruit all on its own, though having a few more around can boost your harvest.

  • USDA Growing Zones: 7-10 Outside, 3-11 Patio
  • Mature Tree Size: 10-30 ft tall, 10-15 ft wide
  • Time to Bear First Fruit: Can Fruit 1st Year
  • Avg Growth Rate: Moderate
  • Chill Hours: None Required
  • Self Fertile: Yes

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7. Violette de Bordeaux – Ficus carica ‘Violette de Bordeaux’

The Violette de Bordeaux Fig tree, also known as the Negronne Fig, is prized for its sweet, richly flavored fruits that are perfect fresh or dried.

This heirloom variety, considered one of the best figs, produces purple-black skin and deep red fleshed fruits, offering two crops a year: an early breba crop and a main crop in fall.

Its compact nature makes it ideal for small spaces and container gardening, thriving in both coastal areas and regions with deer and pests.

Low maintenance and self-pollinating, the Violette de Bordeaux is a delightful addition to any garden, promising delectable figs with minimal effort.

  • USDA Growing Zones: 5-10
  • Mature Tree Size: 6-10 ft tall, 4-8 ft wide
  • Time to Bear First Fruit: Can Fruit 1st Year
  • Avg Growth Rate: Moderate
  • Chill Hours: None Required
  • Self Fertile: Yes

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Fast-Growing-Trees or Nature Hills

8. Italian Honey Fig – Ficus carica ‘Lattarula’

The Italian Honey Fig tree is a sweet delight, offering pale chartreuse-skinned fruits with luscious amber flesh, celebrated for its honey-like taste.

Perfect for fresh consumption or drying, this variety boasts a “closed eye” when ripe, enhancing its resistance to splitting and souring.

With minimal pruning requirements and suitability for container growth, it’s both heat and drought-tolerant, though appreciative of consistent moisture. Deer tend to pass this variety by, and in warmer zones, you might enjoy two crops a year.

Self-fertile and easy to overwinter in cooler climates, the Italian Honey Fig promises sweetness with simplicity.

  • USDA Growing Zones: 7-10
  • Mature Tree Size: 8-10 ft tall, 8-10 ft wide
  • Time to Bear First Fruit: Can Fruit 1st Year
  • Avg Growth Rate: Moderate
  • Chill Hours: None Required
  • Self Fertile: Yes

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9. LSU Gold Fig – Ficus carica ‘LSU Gold’

The LSU Gold Fig is a luscious addition to any garden, boasting large, golden fruits that hint at ruby undertones and transition from light green to yellow as they ripen.

Its flesh, ranging from light red to pink, offers an exceptionally sweet flavor, making it perfect for both fresh consumption and drying.

Originating from Louisiana State University’s horticultural efforts, this vigorous tree thrives in the heat, performs well in containers, and is self-fertile, guaranteeing a harvest by July.

Whether you’re looking to enjoy its fruits immediately or turn them into delightful preserves, the LSU Gold Fig is a great choice that promises excellent yields, especially in the southern climates.

  • USDA Growing Zones: 7-10
  • Mature Tree Size: 8-10 ft tall, 8-10 ft wide
  • Time to Bear First Fruit: 2-3 Years
  • Avg Growth Rate: Moderate
  • Chill Hours: None Required
  • Self Fertile: Yes

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Before Purchasing

When considering a fig tree for your garden, it’s important to note that nurseries might vary in their cultivation methods, including the use of different rootstocks and techniques.

This means the same fig variety may be recommended for different growing zones depending on the nursery. It also means that some varieties of fig will not grow as tall and wide as the same variety at another nursery.

Before purchasing any fruit tree, it is crucial to choose a tree that aligns with your local climate and gardening size for the best results.

Do Fig Trees Need Chill Hours?

Fig trees do not require chill hours to survive or produce fruit, contrary to some widespread beliefs.

While dormancy can be advantageous for fig trees, offering certain biological benefits, it is not a strict requirement for their growth or fruit production.

This means that fig growers, especially those in frost-free climates, can successfully cultivate fig trees without the natural cold period typically associated with dormancy.

Comparing Fig Trees

Tree NameUSDA Growing ZonesMature Tree SizeTime to Bear First FruitAvg Growth RateChill HoursSelf Fertile
Chicago Hardy5-10 Outside, 3-11 Patio10-30 ft tall, 10-30 ft wideCan Fruit 1st YearModerate-FastNone RequiredYes
Brown Turkey5-9 Outside, 3-11 Patio10-30 ft tall, 12-25 ft wideCan Fruit 1st YearModerate-FastNone RequiredYes
LSU Purple7-10 Outside, 3-11 Patio8-10 ft tall, 8-10 ft wideCan Fruit 1st YearModerate-FastNone RequiredYes
Little Miss Figgy7-11 Outside4-6 ft tall, 3-4 ft wideCan Fruit 1st YearModerateNone RequiredYes
Celeste Fig6-10 Outside, 3-11 Patio5-15 ft tall, 5-15 ft wideCan Fruit 1st YearMedium-FastNone RequiredYes
Black Mission7-10 Outside, 3-11 Patio10-30 ft tall, 10-15 ft wideCan Fruit 1st YearModerateNone RequiredYes
Violette de Bordeaux5-106-10 ft tall, 4-8 ft wideCan Fruit 1st YearModerateNone RequiredYes
Italian Honey Fig7-108-10 ft tall, 8-10 ft wideCan Fruit 1st YearModerateNone RequiredYes
LSU Gold Fig7-108-10 ft tall, 8-10 ft wide2-3 YearsModerateNone RequiredYes
*Growth & fruiting rates are approximations; actual performance varies with climate, soil, and care.

Other Quick Fruiting Trees

Why not complement your fig garden with quick-to-fruit varieties like these apricot, pear, peach, apple, cherry, avocado and lemon trees?

These fruit trees not only diversify your orchard but ensure a continuous supply of delicious fruits.

Happy Planting!

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Fern Berg - Founder

Expert Gardener & Horticulturist in Training

Fern has planted and currently cares for over 100 different native and exotic fruit, nut, and ornamental trees. She also cultivates an extensive vegetable garden, several flower gardens and cares for an ever-growing happy family of indoor plants. Fern has a special interest in biodynamic farming, food production and closed loop agriculture. Fern founded Tree Vitalize to help guide others with an interest in tree planting, identification and care.