How long does it take for a sycamore tree to grow

Full Sycamore Tree Timeline (Growth Rate Explained)

The American Sycamore tree is one of the most popular deciduous shade trees in the Eastern United States. It’s a common choice for urban developers and new homeowners because it’s fast-growing, easy to care for, and great at rehabilitating less-than-ideal soils.

In the right growing conditions, the American Sycamore growth rate is about 2 feet per year and will reach anywhere from 75 to 100 feet tall. Sycamores will flower at about 6 years, start seeding at 10 years and will start bearing fruit close to 25 years.

That’s a pretty basic estimation of the American Sycamore’s lifespan, so we’ll provide a full Sycamore tree timeline below. Plus, read more about the desirable traits of P. occidentalis, where to plant it, and common variations. Let’s get to it!

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Complete Sycamore Tree Timeline From Day 1

American sycamore trees are coveted as shade trees throughout the Eastern US and perform well in zones 4 through 9. According to Clemson University’s Home & Garden Information Center, American sycamores can grow to be 10-14 feet in diameter.

It will take sycamore trees centuries to get that large, and if we planted one from seed today, most of us probably won’t be around to see it reach its full glory. However, sycamore trees can bear figs and seeds in as little as 10 years, which is a pretty attainable timeline. Here’s a step-by-step growth timeframe for the American sycamore:

Day 0: From Seed, Clipping, or Nursery

There are a couple of ways to get your hands on a sycamore tree. The simplest–and fastest–method is to head to your local nursery or greenhouse and buy a seedling. (Seedlings are any sycamore less than 10 years old).

Typically, you’re going to pay more for a larger tree. Very small seedlings can range anywhere from $8 to $20, but you’re usually only getting a 1-2ft seedling.

We recommend spending a bit more money to get a seedling that’s at least 6-7ft tall, which might cost anywhere from $80 to $100.

If you can’t find sycamore plants near you, or just aren’t willing to spend the money, there are a few other methods you can use to get a sycamore tree for your yard.

Propagate From a Clipping

It’s possible to propagate a sycamore tree from a softwood cutting from an adult sycamore tree, but it is more labor intensive. The first step is to gather the necessary equipment:

  • Pair of pruning shears (like the Felco F5 Pruning Shears)
  • Propagation tray with a clear lid
  • Spray bottle with distilled water
  • Rooting hormone (something like Hormex Vitamin B1 Rooting Hormone Concentrate works well)

You want to select a softwood branch from the end of an adult sycamore tree limb. The cutting should have a few pairs of leaves on it, as well as at least one set of buds. Only harvest a cutting on a warm sunny day during the mid-summer months. Taking cuttings in the spring or fall can decrease your chances of successfully propagating the sycamore.

(You can find sycamore trees in many parks across the United States, and if not, look around your neighborhood. Make sure to always ask the property owner before taking a cutting.)

Once you have an 8-inch cutting, dip the end in your rooting concentrate and keep it in the propagation tray. Mist the cuttings daily and keep them in a place where they’ll get ample sunlight.

After a few weeks, you should start to see roots growing from the cuttings. Once the roots are about an inch long, you can move the cuttings into pots with potting soil.

You’ll have to check your clippings and ensure they’re well-watered and fertilized. After about a year, you can plant them outside.

Grow A Sycamore From Seed

Your final option for growing a sycamore tree is to start it from seed. This is the least expensive option, but also the most time-intensive.

To start, find an adult sycamore that produces seed pods. They look like little spiky balls. In the spring, the sycamore will drop these pods and all you have to do is collect them. Inside the spiky outer layer, you’ll find the sycamore seeds. Soak them in distilled water for about a full day.

While they’re soaking, prepare your soil. Normal garden soil will not do the job, so you have to be very careful. A horticulturist from Oregon State University says that a good mixture is “⅓ pasteurized soil or compost, ⅓ sand, vermiculite or perlite, and ⅓ coconut coir or peat moss.”

With this recipe, you can easily make as much starting compound as you need. Alternatively, you can purchase seed-starting mixtures from garden or hardware stores.

Once you’ve prepared the potting mixture, dampen it with a water mister and plant the sycamore seeds about a quarter of an inch deep. Water frequently. In about two weeks, you’ll see a sprout. From that point forward, care for the seedling like you would a clipping, keeping it indoors for about a year.

Year 1: Planting Day

If you started your American sycamore tree from seed or a clipping, the one-year mark is when you should migrate your tree outdoors. If you purchased your seedling from a nursery, this is likely where you’ll start the sycamore tree timeline.

Pick A Spot To Plant

The first step is to pick the best spot to plant your sycamore tree. Now, American sycamores are incredibly versatile and will grow just about anywhere. However, they have preferences!

According to the Iowa State University Natural Resource Stewardship program, American sycamore trees prefer rich, deep, and moist soil. That’s why they’re commonly found near streams or rivers, or in shallow bottomlands.

That being said, they will adapt to grow in dry areas as well, but to see above-average growth rates, they need to be planted in wet, nutrient-rich soil with a neutral pH (even a bit alkaline is fine).

First, identify what area on your property is ideal for sycamores. We recommend picking a few spots in late spring or early fall and digging into the ground. Dig down about a foot and look at the soil. If it’s incredibly sandy or full of rocks, move to the next spot.

A bit of clay and stone is fine, but largely the soil should be free of anything that might impede root growth.

Remember: the spot you choose should receive full sun and have ample room for the sycamore to grow. In 100 years, it will probably grow to have a wingspan of around 75 feet, so you don’t want to plant it too close to power lines, other trees, or buildings.

Actually Planting Your Sycamore Tree

When you’ve solidified a spot to plant your sycamore seedling, you’ll need a few things:

  • Shovel (a spade shovel is pretty helpful)
  • Tree fertilizer (2-1-1 or 3-1-1 ratios are best)
  • Landscape fabric
  • Bark mulch/wood chips

Many people think you need to plant trees deep in the ground, and they end up digging too far down. Generally, the sycamore tree sends its roots out instead of down (sometimes spreading out over 6 feet!). You should only dig as deep as the pot you have the seedling planted in.

If you purchased a tree from a nursery, chances are you’ll have to dig down about a foot or more. If you grew a seedling from a seed pod or clipping, your hole will probably be a bit more shallow.

Try to break up any clumps in the dirt and remove any loose stones, root balls, or debris from the hole. Remove the seedling from the pot and knock off some of the dirt into the bottom of the hole. You want the roots to be nice and loose when you put it into its new home.

Packing Your Newly Planted Tree

Once you’ve lowered your tree into the hole, pack it in with a mix of your potting medium and the dirt you removed from the hole.

The next step is to ensure the soil retains moisture. To do that, we have to remove any vegetation around the tree. If you’re working with lawn grass, use the spade shovel to remove the top layer of sod in a circle around the tree.

You should create a circle that’s about 4 feet in diameter around the tree. (That means 2 feet on each side of the trunk).

When you’ve cleared the area down to bare soil, give it a good watering. Make sure the soil is nice and moist. Then cut your landscaping fabric to fit the circle you just made. You can cut an X in the center and fold in those corners to make a square.

Slip the fabric over the sycamore seedling and into place. Cover with your bark mulch or wood chips. This will retain moisture in the soil and look nice as a landscaping element in your yard.

As a final step, place a tree fertilizer spike in the soil around the seedling and give it some more water. You’ve successfully planted your sycamore tree! Make sure to water it consistently throughout the summer and fall.

Year 2-5: Monitor Your Sycamore Tree’s Growth

As we mentioned before, in the right conditions, the American sycamore growth rate is about 2 ft per year, and with ample watering in dry months and fertilization in its developmental stages, it can grow much faster.

After the first full year outdoors, your sycamore tree should have become acclimated to its new home. If you planted in the spring, you likely saw the tree grow multiple feet during the summer and fall, which is fairly common. If you planted in the fall, the seedling likely is a bit shorter but will have a growth spurt in the spring.

Keep track of the tree’s growth. Generally, after the initial growth spurt, you won’t have to keep watering the tree unless you’re in extremely hot and dry conditions.

The adult sycamore is popular because it’s drought-resistant, so try not to over-water it. Occasional fertilizer spikes are fine.

After the first winter, look at the mulch. If it’s gray and brittle, scoop some of it away and replace it. This is usually a yearly task and is best done in late spring or early summer.

After the first 5 years, check the landscape fabric. Depending on the variety you bought, it might need to be replaced. The sycamore root system is notorious for buckling sidewalks and creating little bumps in your lawn. So if the fabric is ripped, replace it.

This is a good opportunity to expand your circle. As the tree grows, its roots will stretch farther out, and you can help it along by keeping the soil moist. Expand the circle by a few feet and replace the fabric and mulch.

It is also good to note that if you are planning on growing plants under or around your new tree, there are plants not to grow under a sycamore tree AND plants that you can plant under a sycamore tree.

Year 6-10: All Grown Up

By this point, the sycamore tree is reaching its adult stages. It’s likely a fairly tall tree, about 20+ ft with a good-sized trunk. All you need to do is watch it grow! 

Make sure you replace the mulch in the tree ring yearly and expand it as you see fit. 

By about 10 years, your sycamore tree will produce seeds! It’s always exciting to see your tree grow up, especially if you grew it from a seed.

As your sycamore tree reaches maturity, it will produce fruit. While most trees don’t start producing fruit until about 25 years, you might see some small figs early.

How Long Do Sycamore Trees Live?

With the combination of good soil pH, ample room, and moist, nutrient-rich growing conditions, the sycamore tree can live for a very long time. Some of the oldest sycamore trees are thought to be hundreds of years old.

Simsbury, Connecticut boasts one of the largest sycamore trees in the northeast, lovingly called the Pinchot Sycamore. In 2016, the trunk was 28 ft in diameter and the tree was over 100 ft tall, with a canopy spread of 121 ft. In short, the tree is massive.

Another sycamore tree in Lancaster, Pennsylvania is estimated to be about 370 years old, with a trunk diameter of 27 inches. The tree was struck by lightning in the 1950s, so it’s partially hollow.

All this to say, sycamore trees will be around for many generations if you take care of them right!

Best Places To Plant A Sycamore Tree

The sycamore is a desirable tree because of its beautiful, flaking bark pattern and its edible fruits, the sycamore fig.

The American sycamore grows to be quite large and isn’t always the right tree to plant on your property.

According to the USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service, the American sycamore is ideal for properties that have had some kind of soil contamination. It’s commonly planted around strip mines, old agricultural land, and water disposal sites to help bring nutrients back to the soil.

Generally, the American sycamore is well-equipped to deal with wet environments and is often found in floodplains, riverbanks, or swamps. Interestingly, seedlings can survive being entirely submerged in flood waters!

If you’re looking to plant a sycamore tree on your property, you should know they grow to be enormous trees, with an average width between 75 and 100 ft. Make sure you have ample room for your sycamore to grow to its full potential. You can also plant it in a wet part of your yard, like in a shallow dip or near a stream bank.

Do Sycamore Trees Fall Easily?

It’s no secret that sycamore trees aren’t the strongest trees in North America, but that doesn’t mean you have to worry about them falling over. Usually, sycamore trees will remain tall and strong for decades without very much care at all.

However, there are a few things you can do to keep your sycamore in peak condition.

  • Trimming dead branches can help reduce unnecessary weight
  • Keep your tree fertilized and watered if you live in a dry area
  • Watch the leaves for signs of color or texture changes not related to changing seasons

While it’s pretty uncommon for your sycamore tree to just keel over one day, the branches are particularly brittle, which means you’ll likely have a lot of sticks in your yard. This is normal, however, and you can expect to see a lot of twigs and branches around your sycamore after a storm or gusts of high wind.

If you’re worried about your sycamore tree and are considering cutting it down, take a look at our guide on the reasons to cut down your sycamore tree.

Most Common Types Of Sycamore Trees

Most of this article has been focused on the American sycamore (P. occidentalis), but there are a few other variations of the tree that are just as common.

London Planetree (Platanus x acerifolia) The English sycamore, also known as the London Plane, is a hybrid of the American sycamore and the oriental plane tree. It’s hardier than the American sycamore and is also a popular choice for air purification and urban planning.

Western Sycamore (Platanus racemosa) – Also known as the California sycamore, this tree is found primarily along California rivers, streams, and floodplains. Similar to the American sycamore, the Platanus racemosa grows to over 100 ft. tall and is primarily used for landscaping, park design, and urban development.

Arizona Sycamore (Platanus wrightii) – The Arizona sycamore is smaller than its relatives, reaching only about 80 ft. tall at full maturity. It’s mainly isolated to parts of Arizona, New Mexico, and northern Mexico. But, like the Western sycamore, it appears near rivers and streams.

That’s A Wrap!

The American sycamore tree is a brilliant choice if you’re looking for a beautiful shade tree with really interesting bark patterns. It’s hardy and grows in wet areas well. It’s a low-maintenance tree and is drought-resistant.

The sycamore tree will grow 2+ ft per year in the right conditions and will reach maturity in about 10 years. After, you can expect the tree to grow up to 75 to 100 ft, with an even wider canopy spread.


Habibi, R., Millard, P., & Proe, M. F. (1993). Modelling the seasonal nitrogen partitioning in young sycamore (Acer pseudoplatanus) trees in relation to nitrogen supply. Annals of Botany, 71(5), 453-459.

Pulford, I. D., & Watson, C. (2003). Phytoremediation of heavy metal-contaminated land by trees—a review. Environment international, 29(4), 529-540.

Wood, E. M., & Esaian, S. (2020). The importance of street trees to urban avifauna. Ecological Applications, 30(7), e02149.

Home & Garden Information Center

The sycamore (Platanus species) is a deciduous tree that is often grown for the shade it produces and the handsome bark on its massive trunk. There are 10 species, but this fact sheet will focus on one species and one hybrid that are common to South Carolina: American planetree (Platanus occidentalis) and London planetree (Platanus x acerifolia.) Both are adapted to all areas of South Carolina.

London planetree bark.
Karen Russ, ©2006 HGIC, Clemson Extension

General Information on Sycamores

Mature Height/Spread: Sycamore is a massive tree that grows 70 to 100 feet tall with a similar spread. It has a pyramidal form in youth but develops a spreading, rounded and irregular crown with age.

Growth Rate: This tree grows at a moderate to rapid rate, and has a moderate to long life span.

Ornamental Features: Sycamores are valued for their massive size and are often used as shade trees. The cream- to olive-colored exfoliating bark is handsome in all seasons, but it is exceptional in winter when contrasted with the dark bark of other trees in a woodland setting. The leaf size varies, even on the same tree, and the fall color is yellow-brown. The 1-inch fruit hang from the tree on long stalks through most of the winter.

Landscape Use: Sycamores are too big for most home properties. They are primarily used for parks, large-scale landscapes or naturalized plantings along streams. They have been used extensively as street trees, and although they withstand difficult city conditions, they can create problems that require high maintenance. Leaf and twig litter, disease and aggressive roots must be considered when choosing this tree for high-traffic (pedestrian and vehicular) areas.

American planetree leaves.
Paul Wray, Iowa State University, www.

This tree prefers deep, moist, rich soils, but will grow in places undesirable to plant growth, such as areas with low soil oxygen and high pH. It prefers full sun or light shade.

Prune drooping branches on trees located near vehicular or pedestrian traffic. Eliminate the occasional double leader to promote a single trunk. Pruning healthy wood should be done in winter. Remove dead and broken wood when detected (any time of year) to reduce incidence of disease.

Problems: The most serious disease is anthracnose. Other diseases include canker, bacterial leaf scorch, powdery mildew and leaf spot. Insects that cause problems are aphids, sycamore lace bug, scales and borers. For more information on problems with sycamore, refer to the fact sheet HGIC 2011, Sycamore Diseases & Insect Pests.

Aggressive roots can raise sidewalks if planted too close. Plant at least 6 feet from the sidewalk or curb. Roots and dense shade created by the canopy of this tree prevent healthy growth of lawn grasses beneath it.

Keep this tree away from well-tended lawns, pavement and buildings. Sycamores create litter with their leaves, fruit and twigs. This is not such a problem when sited along streambanks or out-of-the-way places, but maintenance becomes an issue if located in turf areas or near pedestrian or vehicular traffic.

American Planetree (

Platanus occidentalis)

The American planetree is also called sycamore, buttonwood and buttonball.

Mature Height/Spread: This tree can grow 75 to 100 feet with a similar or greater spread. Under ideal conditions it can attain heights of 175 feet and may have a trunk 10 to 14 feet in diameter.

Growth Rate: It grows at a moderate to rapid rate (2 feet per year) and is long-lived.

Ornamental Features: It is highly valued for its form and size, with its massive height and spread, huge trunk and large limbs. The growth rate rarely slows, and under ideal conditions this tree can become one of the most massive in Eastern North America. It usually develops one strong central trunk, but occasionally double leaders will develop.

The bark at the lower part of the trunk is red to gray-brown and scaly. The bark on the upper trunk peels in large flakes to expose smooth, lighter colored (white to creamy white) inner layers.

The leaves are cream-colored and wooly when they emerge in the spring. At maturity they are large, medium to dark green and are only wooly along the veins on the lower side. The fruit are seeds clustered into a round ball (1 inch) that hangs on a long, flexible stalk through most of the winter. They usually hang individually, but sometimes hang in pairs.

Landscape Use: The American planetree should be reserved for naturalized areas next to streams and rivers, or sites where litter and aggressive roots are not an issue. It needs ample space to develop.

This tree prefers deep, rich, moist, well-drained soils but will grow in almost anything. It grows in either high or low pH soils. Although it prefers moist soils, it tolerates moderate drought. It prefers sun or very light shade.

Problems: Anthracnose can be a serious problem in wet, cool springs. Bacterial leaf scorch, cankerstain, leafspot, canker and powdery mildew are other disease problems. Troublesome insects include aphids, sycamore plant bug, sycamore tussock moth, scales, borers and lacebugs.

Cultivars: There are no selections commercially available. When possible, select trees grown from parents native to your region.

London Planetree (

Plantanus x acerifolia)

This hybrid is the result of a cross between P. occidentalis and P. orientalis. It is sometimes listed as P. x hybrida.

Mature Height/Spread: This tree grows 70 to 100 feet tall, 65 to 80 feet wide. It can reach 120 feet in height under ideal conditions.

Growth Rate: It grows at a moderate to rapid rate (2 feet per year) and has a moderate to long life span.

Ornamental Features: This tree is similar to American planetree with a few exceptions: The spread is not as great, bark is duller (but still showy) and fruit hang in pairs.

Landscape Use: London planetree should be reserved for naturalized areas next to streams and rivers, or sites where litter and aggressive roots are not an issue. It needs ample space to develop.

This tree prefers deep, rich, moist, well-drained soils but will grow in almost anything. It grows in either high or low pH soils. Although it prefers moist soils, it tolerates moderate drought. It prefers sun or very light shade.

Problems: London planetree suffers from most of the same disease and insect problems as American planetree. Cankerstain can be very serious on this tree. Some cultivars are somewhat resistant to powdery mildew and anthracnose. (Disease resistance means that infections are few, do not progress very far or do not occur.) Other problems with aggressive roots, litter and turf growth beneath the canopy are similar to American planetree.


  • ‘Columbia’ and ‘Liberty’ are reportedly more resistant (not immune) to powdery mildew and eastern strains of anthracnose.
  • ‘Bloodgood’ is somewhat resistant to anthracnose but susceptible to mildew.

Note: Chemical control of diseases and insects on large trees is usually not feasible since adequate coverage of the foliage with a pesticide cannot be achieved.

Originally published 06/99

If this document didn’t answer your questions, please contact HGIC at [email protected] or 1-888-656-9988.

Fig tree - tree of paradise

Fig tree - tree of paradise

As one of the most revered plants, the fig tree, along with the olive, can often be found near the mosque.

“By the fig tree and the olive tree! I swear on Mount Sinai! I swear by this safe city (Mecca)! We have created man in the most beautiful form” (Sura “The Fig Tree”, 95/1-4).

The fig tree, the fig tree, the fig tree, the fig tree, the Smyrna berry, and finally the fig tree are the names of the same plant known to man since ancient times. The Quran tells that the first man and the prophet Adam and his wife Havva (peace be upon them), who lived in paradise, disobeyed the order of Allah and followed the instigation of Iblis: “Your Lord forbade you this tree only so that you would not become angels or immortal " ( Sura "Barriers", 7/20 ). What happened was what had to happen by the will of Allah: “They both ate from him, and then their shameful places became visible to them. They began to stick heavenly leaves on themselves. Adam disobeyed his Lord and fell into error” ( Sura Taha, 20/121 ).

According to the opinion of most authoritative interpreters of the Qur'an, this tree of paradise was most likely a fig tree, and its broad leaves can be considered the first clothing of man.

As one of the most revered plants, the fig tree, along with the olive, can often be found near the mosque. In Mecca itself you can see the growing fig trees, but since it is located almost in the desert, fig fruits, like other fresh fruits, are brought to the bazaars of the city from the city of Taif, located 100 km to the east, located on a plateau, at an altitude of two thousand four hundred feet above sea level, and which has a favorable climate suitable for growing figs in the vicinity of the city. Near the fortress wall of the Medina and in the city itself, you can also admire the olive trees, figs and date palms growing nearby.

In Jerusalem, which is the third holiest city for Muslims after Mecca and Medina, on the Temple Mount there is a "Planet of the Fig Tree", which was built in 1760 by Ahmed Kul-Lari, a man from the guards of Sultan Mustafa III (1757-1774). This building is used as an open summer mosque. There are a lot of such sites on the Temple Mount, but they are all located below, under the main “platform”, rising to a height of 4 meters, on which the main Shrine, the Umar Mosque, is located.

The fig tree, Ficus carica, common fig (Ficus carica L) from the mulberry family (Moraceae) is a tree 10–15 m high with smooth light gray bark. In favorable conditions, from branches with large palmate-lobed dark green leaves, it forms a beautiful, wide and spreading crown, from under which the sky is not visible. The leaves of the fig tree fall at the beginning of winter, and for most of the winter rainy season the tree remains bare until buds begin to open in early April, heralding the approach of summer. The powerful root system of the tree allows the tree to extract moisture from great depths, and therefore it can grow anywhere - on scree, on mountain slopes, in rock crevices and even in stone wall crevices, where only dust and occasional rain moisture and night dew get. On fertile soils, near groundwater outlets, in river valleys, powerful, abundantly fruiting trees develop, from which up to 100 kg of fruits are harvested. The tree lives from 30 to 300 years and begins to bear fruit from 2-3 years, which makes its cultivation a very profitable business. Fig trees grow slowly but bear fruit for almost ten months of the year.

The natural conditions of the Mediterranean and some parts of the Arabian Peninsula were favorable for the fig tree, and it grew wild everywhere here. Most likely, it was in Southern, the so-called Happy Arabia, where, thanks to irrigation during the last millennium BC, there were relatively fertile lands and a fairly developed civilization, the wild fig was finally turned into a cultivated plant that gives abundant fruits. Archaeologists have discovered that, apparently, figs are one of the first fruit plants on earth, which our distant ancestors learned to grow. It was its dried fruits that were found at the sites of the ancient man's sites next to the grains of barley, oats and wheat.

From Arabia, figs spread to Phenicia, Syria and Egypt, e. was brought to Hellas. Fruits called "fig", originating from the Church Slavonic language, appeared in Russia in the 17th century. from the east and began to be used as a delicacy on ordinary days and as a sweet dish during numerous fasts. This plant also had other names in Russia - a wine berry, because wine could be made from figs, and a Smyrna berry, because, basically, figs were delivered to Russia from Smyrna, the ancient Greek city and port of Asia Minor. Archaeological research has suggested that the first settlers of this city settled here in the third millennium BC. Located in the depths of the bay of the Aegean Sea, at the end of the caravan routes, it was the most important trading post and cultural center on the western coast of Asia Minor, where trade routes leading from countries adjacent to the eastern Mediterranean and northern Africa crossed. Through the port of Smyrna, goods from the Middle East and Africa got to Europe and Russia. Currently, the city belongs to Turkey and is called Izmir.

In the Russian language of the 18th century, the generic scientific name of the plant “Ficus Carian” appeared, given to it by the Swedish taxonomist K. Linnaeus, which rather quickly turned into a “fig”, and hence the common name “fig tree” until the beginning of the 20th century .

The fig tree has its own characteristics of flowering, pollination and fruit formation. Without going into details that are of interest only to narrow specialists or meticulous botanists, we only note that during the year 3 generations of inflorescences develop on a tree, in the pollination of which small blastophagous wasps take an indispensable part. From pollinated inflorescences, seedlings of green, yellow, brown, purple or black color develop later, with yellowish-green or reddish tasty, sweet pulp inside.

Growth and ripening phases

In April, before the leaves, small young fruits appear on the trees, the so-called “early figs”, symbolizing the end of winter. These not very juicy early fruits are eaten only because other fresh fruits are scarce at this time of the year.

At the end of May – beginning of June, extraordinarily tasty and juicy fruits ripen on fig trees covered with lush foliage, which, alas, cannot be stored for a long time. At this time, passing by Arab villages, you can see many enterprising young Arabs selling fresh figs right on the highway.

In August, “late figs” ripen – the most delicious ones that are eaten fresh, dried and stored in bunches. These are the well-known figs, figs, figs or figs, which are now almost always sold in stores all over the world, and with which it is so tasty and healthy to drink good tea.

The fig tree is a favorite tree of the inhabitants of the Islamic world, the abundant fruits of which were distinguished by a special taste, nutritional value, healing properties and served as a symbol of spiritual and worldly prosperity.

At all times, its fruits have been very important foodstuffs. Figs were eaten fresh, dried and pressed into cakes. Cakes made from dried figs are a very satisfying and compact food that perfectly retains its nutritional and taste qualities in a hot climate. These were a kind of "canned food", indispensable for a traveler and a warrior.

The tradition from the life of Imam Ali ibn Musa al-Riz says: “The fruit of the fig tree removes bad breath, strengthens the gums and bones, promotes hair growth and, without any additional medicine, cures some diseases” .

In 1968-1970 from the remains of an ancient ship lying at the bottom of the Mediterranean Sea, not far from the coastal city of Kerenia, located in the north of the island of Cyprus, 404 ancient sharp-bottomed amphorae were raised to the surface. After careful research, it was found that they had lain under water for the 23rd century and were transporting wine and olive oil. But the most interesting thing is that garlic cloves, 18 olive pits, 14,760 fig (fig) seeds and about 10,000 almonds were found on the ship, indicating that garlic, dried figs, olives and almonds served as food for the crew of the ship, which made a long-distance at that time sailing between Cyprus, the Greek islands and, possibly, reaching the ports of Syria.

Nutritional benefits of figs

Ripe figs come in a variety of colors ranging from almost white to dark purple. For drying, light fruits with golden skin and white flesh, about 5 cm in diameter, are more suitable. They are dried for 3-4 days under the sun, always up with a hole located on the top of the fruit.

Jam is made from fig fruits. Puree from figs is used for filling sweets and for making oriental sweets and marshmallows. Vinegar is obtained from low-grade varieties. Compotes are boiled from dried figs, flour is made, which is used in the confectionery industry as an additive to cakes and pastries. Fresh and dried fruits are added to pilaf, salads and poultry dishes.

Fresh fruits contain 83% water, up to 1% protein, 0.5% fat, 12% sugar, 3% pectin and dietary fiber; organic acids, anthocyanins, coumarins, flavonoids, triterpene compounds, sterols, provitamin A (carotenoids), B1, B2, B6, Bs (B9), C, P, PP (niacin, B3), D, macro- and microelements: iron , potassium, calcium, magnesium, sodium phosphorus, zinc; enzymes protease, lipase, amylase. In dried fruits, the proportion of sugars increases to 40-70%, which gives them a rich sweet taste.

Figs are well absorbed by the body and have great nutritional value, give strength, strengthen memory, improve thinking.

Since ancient times, figs have been known to have a mild laxative, diuretic and expectorant effect. A tradition from the life of Imam Ali ibn Musa ar-Riz says: “The fruit of the fig tree removes bad breath, strengthens the gums and bones, promotes hair growth and, without any additional medicine, cures some diseases.” And further it says: “The fig, more than all other fruits, is similar to the fruits of the Heavenly Gardens” ( Bihar al-Anwar, volume 66, page 184 ).

Modern research has confirmed what was known several centuries ago, and added to the main therapeutic properties the ability of biologically active substances contained in fruits to have a beneficial effect on the cardiovascular system, exhibit antimicrobial and anti-inflammatory effects.

Fresh and dried fruits can be used in dietary nutrition for people with impaired digestion, accompanied by habitual or chronic constipation, as well as in the presence of chronic, low-grade inflammatory diseases of the gastrointestinal tract, a tendency to form blood clots and fluid retention in the body. Figs as a tasty dietary remedy are useful for people who are weakened by diseases, suffering from anemia, anemia, and also for those who, due to old age, suffer from a breakdown. Figs, containing a large amount of easily digestible fructose, quickly restore the lack of energy in the body, eliminate mental and physical overwork. At the same time, it should not be eaten in case of acute diseases or exacerbation of chronic inflammatory diseases of the gastrointestinal tract and patients with diabetes mellitus.

The special mention in the Qur'an by Almighty Allah of the fig tree, which He created and bestowed on people, indicates the great benefits and importance of the fruits of this tree for people's health. The nutritional value of figs and its health benefits have been fully confirmed in the past few decades, thanks to the new possibilities of medical science, which once again shows us the amazing wisdom and infinity of knowledge of the Supreme Creator.

The word "fig tree" is mentioned in the Qur'an once, but the whole sura bears the name of this tree, while the word "olive" occurs in the text of the Holy Qur'an six times and is mentioned once more in an indirect form: "We have grown a tree that grows on Mount Sinai and gives oil and spices for those who eat” ( Sura "The Believers", 23/20 ). Even if you take an oath by the fig tree and the olive in the literal sense, because their fruits, which have extraordinary nutritional properties that give a person physical and spiritual strength and are always of high value to the people of the desert, the meaning of their mention retains its enormous depth and significance, because they Almighty Allah himself chose for the oath, for it is said: “Is not Allah the Most Wise Judge?”


Essence. The fig itself has a special nature, and its leaves and milky juice have the properties of yattu. If they do not find its leaves, then they boil the branches of wild figs, broken and crushed, and use their juice. Squeezed juice from figs is extracted in the same way as it is extracted from other woody plants. Condensed fig juice acts like honey.

Choice. The best figs are white, then red figs and finally black. The most ripe figs are the best and are almost harmless. Dried figs are praiseworthy in their actions; but only the blood that springs from it is not good. Therefore, figs cause lice, unless you use it with nuts, then the chyme from it will be good. Almonds follow nuts in this respect. The lightest figs are white.

Nature. Red figs are a little hot, while fresh figs have a lot of wateriness and little medicinal properties. Unripe figs cleanse, except for their milky juice, but they are somewhat cold. Dried figs are hot in the first degree, at the limit of it, and rarefied.

Properties. Dry figs, especially pungent ones, strongly purify, promote the ripening of juices and dissolve, while fleshy figs are more conducive to ripening, and there is nutrition in it, it opens the juices and thins, and wild figs are even sharper, and they have a stronger effect in this respect. Figs are more nutritious than all fruits. Very ripe figs are close to not harming at all, but they have the ability to puff. Sharp dry figs sometimes go beyond cleansing and lead to ulceration. Dry fig leaves, if boiled in an infusion of black wolf's bast, even become a remedy for jarab in animals. The juice squeezed from the leaves of figs is very warming, cleansing, and produces a great emollient, which drives the putrid juices to the skin and causes perspiration, so its use, I think, should soothe the heat. Dry figs also drive the juices out and cause perspiration, and the milky juice of figs thickens thinned blood and milk and thins thickened juices. Although the nutrient content of figs is not as dense as the nutrient content of meat and cereals, it is still denser than the nutrient content of other fruits. The strength of the squeezed juice of its branches, before they are covered with leaves, is close to the strength of its milky juice. From the coagulation of milk in the stomach, they give to drink water twice infused with the ashes of a fig tree. Water infused with oak tree ashes is close to figs in this regard. Fig wine is rarefied and gives rise to bad juice. Fig sprigs are so rarefied that they even boil meat if they are boiled with meat. The fig tree has a power that draws the juices from the depths and absorbs what is drawn out.

Applications for figs

Cosmetics. Unripe figs are smeared and applied as a medicinal dressing on birthmarks, all kinds of warts and on bachs, fig leaves also act. The use of figs corrects the complexion spoiled by diseases and hot friable tumors, and promotes the maturation of abscesses. It is especially good to apply it with orris root, soda, lime and pomegranate peel with a nail-eater. The milky juice of the fig tree helps with difficult-to-absorb tumors, mumps and abscesses; so does a decoction of the fig tree.

Figs help against tusa, but the fig tree is especially good. The squeezed juice of its leaves erases the traces of the tattoo. With wax ointment, figs are also applied to cracks from the cold. In all these cases, its milky juice also acts.

The fig causes a large deposition of fat, which quickly dissolves and contributes to the appearance of lice, they say due to the corruption of its juice, and they say because the fig quickly rushes out and that its juice is favorable for the development of animal strength.

Tumors. From figs, apply medicinal dressings to hard tumors; so does figs in a decoction with fig fruits and barley flour. Unripe figs are applied to bahak. It contributes to the ripening of boils: fresh figs, when consumed, cause prickly heat. A decoction of it as a gargle is useful for swellings in the throat and for swellings at the base of the ears. Figs with pomegranate peel and fanise are applied with a nail-biter. Dry figs, due to their sweetness, are harmful for tumors of the liver and spleen. When the tumor is hard, it is not harmful and not useful, unless mixed with thinning and resolving agents; in this case is very useful. The fruits of the fig tree strongly dissolve difficult-to-treat tumors.

Wounds and ulcers. Squeezed juice of fig leaves ulcerates; its decoction with mustard foam is smeared with scabies. Casting it helps with lichen.

They are used for urticaria and ulcers containing thick fluids. Water, twice infused with the ashes of its wood, corrodes and cleanses rotting old ulcers. Pomegranate rind figs are used to cure nail-eaters, and in combination with calcanth it is used for malignant leg ulcers. The milky juice of the fig tree heals wounds.

Joint organs. Sleeping poppy leaves are added to unripe figs and their leaves; this composition is applied in diseases of the periosteum. Water, twice infused on the ashes of fig wood, is poured over the aching nerve. Sometimes it is given to drink in the amount of one and a half ukiy.

Head organs. Fresh and dried figs help with epilepsy, and its decoction with mustard foam is allowed into the ear, in which noise is heard. The milky juice of a fig, or the juice squeezed from its twigs before they are covered with leaves, helps if applied to a corroded tooth. It is useful to use it in the form of a medicinal bandage for swelling under the ear; fresh fig powder cures ulcers on the head.

Organs of the eye. The milky juice of figs with honey helps with wet shroud, with the onset of cataracts, with thickening of the eyelids and thickening of the membranes of the eye. Fig leaves are rubbed with hardening of the eyelids and trachoma.

Breast organs. Fresh and dried figs are good for rough throat and suitable for chest and lung tube. Fig wine enhances milk flow, and also helps with chronic coughs, chest pains, and lung and lung tube tumors.

Food organs. Figs open blockages in the liver and spleen. Galen says: “Fresh figs are bad for the stomach, but dry ones are not bad; if eaten with murri, it cleanses the stomach of excess.”

Figs are one of the remedies that stop thirst from salty phlegm. Dry figs stimulate thirst and help against dropsy, especially with wormwood. Drinking fig wine is also good for the stomach, but it discourages the appetite for food. Figs quickly descend and quickly pass into the vessels due to their cleansing properties. Dry figs are harmful to a swollen liver and spleen only because of their sweetness, and if the swelling is hard, then it is neither harmful nor beneficial. Eating figs on an empty stomach, especially when combined with nuts and almonds, is amazingly helpful in opening nutrient pathways, however, the nutritional value of figs combined with nuts is greater than that of figs combined with almonds. If there is a fig with food that thickens the juices, its harmfulness becomes very significant. The fruits of the fig tree are very harmful to the stomach and have little nutrition, but in the form of a medicinal dressing with ushshak or with the milky juice of the fig tree, they are useful in hardening of the spleen. All varieties of figs are not suitable for pouring excess into the stomach.

Eruption organs. Figs, fresh and dried, are good for the kidneys and bladder. It helps to endure the retention of urine, but is not suitable for the outpouring of matter into the intestines. The squeezed juice of fig leaves opens the mouths of the vessels in the anus, and fresh figs soften and slightly loosen, especially when taken with crushed almonds. This is also its action in the hardening of the uterus, if mixed with soda and dyeing safflower and taken before meals. Its milky juice with egg yolk is injected into the vagina, it cleanses the uterus and drives menstruation and urine. Figs are also used to make medicinal dressings with fenugreek for diseases of the uterus. Mixed with rue, it is included in enemas from pain in the intestines. Figs, and especially its milky juice, if consumed, drive sand out of the kidneys. If you take curd whey with milky juice and drop it into milk, which is lightly stirred with a fig tree branch, then it releases the nature more strongly and cleanses the kidneys. Water, twice infused on the ashes of fig wood, is given to a person suffering from diarrhea and dysentery in the amount of one and a half cuki or an enema is made from it; in both cases water is mixed with olive oil.

Fig wine drives away urine and menstruation and softens the nature. Due to its cleansing properties, it quickly descends from the stomach and quickly penetrates into the vessels.

Poisons. The milky juice of figs in the form of a vitamin helps against a scorpion sting, and also helps against a sting of a karakurt. Unripe figs or fresh fig leaves are applied to the bite of a rabid dog and this helps. They are applied in the form of a medicinal dressing with vetch to the weasel bite, and this is beneficial. Water, twice infused with the ashes of fig wood, helps in the form of drinking or rubbing from a bite of a karakurt. Fig fruit in the form of a drink or ointment helps against the bites of poisonous animals.

Home remedy
  • Boil dry fruit in a glass of milk until completely softened and grind thoroughly. Take a mixture of ½ cup in a warm form 2-4 times a day as an expectorant for dry cough, and cough accompanying bronchitis, tracheitis and whooping cough.
  • 2 dry fruits pour 250 ml of water, bring to a boil, cook for 10 minutes, leave for 1 hour, strain. Take 100 ml 2 times a day for painful urination.
  • Apply boiled figs to abscesses to speed up their maturation.

I.N. Sokolsky

20 facts about figs | Jewish Agency

Ariel Bulstein

1. Fig hunters in Israel are like mushroom pickers in Russia. They take their hobby seriously - they do not give out the location of the object of their love to "strangers" under any pretext. But among the initiated, information about the ripening of fruits is distributed in a matter of hours. You can, of course, buy figs in a store, greengrocer or roadside kiosk, but this is not at all the same as picking a sweet fruit from a tree that is ready to burst from an abundance of juice.

2. The fig tree, also known as the fig tree, is the first fruit tree mentioned in the biblical text. From it, Adam and Eve knitted their first clothes after they tasted the fruit of the Tree of Knowledge. In the Talmud, there is an opinion that the fruit itself, plucked by Adam, was precisely a fig.

3. The fig even deserved to be likened to the Torah by the Jewish tradition. The Jewish sages rewarded the well-known quote from the book of Proverbs (Mishlei) - "He who guards the fig tree will eat its fruits" - with many explanations and comments, one of which emphasizes the dignity of the fig by the fact that, unlike other fruits (date, grape, pomegranate) everything in it is useful and edible, just like every word of the Torah is good for a person.

4. The Eskimos are said to have dozens of concepts describing snow. And in Hebrew there are many words associated with figs. The Israeli linguist Professor Yehuda Felix counted 32 (!) Verbs in the historical layers of Jewish thought relating to this fruit, and 16 more words describing parts of the fig tree and different types of figs.

5. In particular, Hebrew has a special word for harvesting a fig tree (ariya), a special word for a fig fruit from which all the juice has flowed (grogeret), a special word for a fruit that has ripened before the rest (bhora), and a special word for perfectly ripe figs (cemel).

6. Even more interesting is that the fig gave its name to a whole season. The fact is that the word kaitz, meaning "summer" in the modern language, denoted in ancient Hebrew the fruits of figs and the time of their collection. In the famous Calendar from Gezer, a limestone tablet with Hebrew inscriptions carved on it from the 10th century BC. e., the "month of kaits" is mentioned, and, according to scientists, we are talking about the month during which the fruits of the fig tree are harvested.

7. According to a study by Professor Danin of the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, the results of archaeological excavations in the Ein Gedi springs and other places in Eretz Israel provide indisputable evidence that figs grew here more than five thousand years ago. One such evidence was the fossilized leaves of a fig tree found in the limestone rock of the Judean Desert.

8. Figs are one of the seven types of agricultural crops ("shiv'at haminim") for which the Land of Israel is famous. Jews were obliged to bring the first fruits of the harvest of these plants to the Temple, and in ancient Jewish sources it was noted that residents of places close to Jerusalem brought fresh figs, and residents of distant places brought the same grogeret, which we would today call dried figs.

9. Hikers in Israel often encounter fig trees on their way. However, not all of them can be found fruit. At 19In the 1940s, the fig trees of Eretz Israel suffered a colossal blow. The pest beetle with the mysterious name Batocera rufomaculata, which entered our region from tropical Africa, destroyed almost all mature trees in a few years. They were replaced by young shoots, but most of them do not bear fruit.

10. One of Israel's most remarkable fig trees grows near the spring of Ein Marganit, in the Galilean forest of Biriya. More precisely, there are seven of them - obviously, these are the remains of an old orchard - but one of the fig trees is especially good: both in appearance and in taste. The perimeter of its trunk is almost three meters, which is very rare for the usually modest size of fig trees.

11. Dwela, an edible mass of dried figs, which was measured in briquettes, was especially popular in ancient times. The biblical book Shmuel tells how the wife of King David Avigal, collecting provisions for his devoted soldiers, supplied them with 200 such briquettes - both tasty and healthy...

12. Judging by other biblical sources, figs in those days also had a function. As is clear from the book of the prophet Yeshayahu (ch. 38, v. 21), he helped heal wounds and marks from blows. Two thousand years later, Rambam also wrote about the same properties of figs, adding to this the beneficial effect of the fruit on the digestive system.

13. Figs are extremely unpretentious: they can grow on poor lands, rocky slopes, rocks and even stone walls. There are a great variety of varieties, but three are the most common in Israel today: the Nazarene fig (green on the outside and honey on the inside), the Brazilian fig (easily recognizable by its dark purple color), and the kaduta fig (this Italian variety is best known for its aroma).

14. There are also varieties of fig tree with a very limited habitat. For example, the biyadi variety can only be found in the area of ​​the Galilean village of Gush Halav. This is a very juicy fig with a moderate sugar content and is ideal for drying and then turning into a dwelu. A hundred years ago, such briquettes, whose weight reached as much as 30 kilograms, served as a kind of bargaining currency for all the peasants of Galilee. Now, of course, you can’t pay for purchases with fig mass, and the standard weight of the dvela has dropped to 1 kilogram, but fig hunters appreciate the Gush Halava area no less than in the old days.

15. In the fig garden of Dani Yakir, in the town of Binyamina, there are 200 varieties of fig trees. This is one of the largest fig collections in the world, rivaling even the famous National Gardens in Provence. Here you can see absolutely fantastic trees, on which three or four different varieties of figs grow at the same time.

16. About ten years ago, the Society of Fig Lovers was registered in Israel. No more than fifty people participate in its activities, but any of them - without exaggeration - is familiar with every fig tree in the country. Members of the Society have no doubt that, as in the case of wine, the taste of figs is determined by the terroir, that is, the combination of soil and climatic factors and the special characteristics of the area. Almost all of them are unanimous in choosing the "very-very" fig tree - the first place in taste is given to the so-called "Maurice fig tree", which grows somewhere between Safed and Mount Myron. It was discovered by Maurice Zemach, who, of course, is also a member of the Society of Fig Lovers.

17. Tunisian Jews who immigrated to Israel brought with them a recipe for an alcoholic drink made from dates. Buha (in the Hebrew-Arabic dialect it means "alcoholic vapors") is made by fermenting and then distilling figs; the degree of alcohol in it reaches 36-40%. A legend about the famous Tunisian rabbi Yitzhak Hai Tayeb has come down to our days: they say that after all his manuscripts were burned, he had no choice but to find solace in boo...

18. The Bokovza family was the first to produce the drink in commercial quantities in the 1880s, but family tradition says that its roots go even deeper - at least in the 20s of the century before last. Buch was especially liked by the Belgian king Leopold II, and he awarded its creators with a special medal. In the 20th century, the Bokovza family emigrated from Tunisia to France, and set up a bouha factory in the new location.

19. In Israel, the pioneer of this hot drink was Moshe Lev, the owner of the Bustan Chaim fig plantation, who received the expected nickname Moshe-buha. He supplies his organic products to several exclusive restaurants, including Tel Aviv's Raphael and New York's Daniel.

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