How to Root a Fig Tree


A cherished fig tree is the highlight of the home orchard. The sweet fruits come ripe and filled with delicious natural sugars. This deciduous tree is adapted to subtropical climates. The fig grows best in areas that are hot and dry in the summer and warm and wet in the winter. But gardeners in USDA growing zones 7 to 11 can grow figs successfully. Propagating a fig tree is as easy as taking a cutting from your favorite tree, or asking a fellow gardener for a cutting from hers.

Step 1

Cut a 12-inch branch from an existing fig tree. The cutting should be about the width of a pencil. Take the cutting in winter when the tree is in its dormancy period. Use a sharp pair of pruning shears to make a clean cut.

Step 2

Fill a 12-inch planting pot with rooting mix or topsoil. Chose a pot that has several drainage holes in the bottom to allow water to escape after watering.

Step 3

Roll the cut end of your fig branch in hormone rooting powder. This can be purchased at most local garden stores. The rooting powder will stimulate the branch to take root.

Step 4

Stick the cut end with the rooting powder on it into the planting pot. Bury it so that two or three of the existing buds are buried beneath the soil. There should be at least three buds above the soil as well.

Step 5

Water the planted cutting so that the soil is uniformly damp. Stick your index finger into the soil to make sure the water has penetrated to the bottom.

Step 6

Place the potted fig cutting in a green house or covered porch during the cold months. If you experience very mild winters in your area, you can leave your cutting outside.

Step 7

Water once or twice a week; you want to keep it damp but not saturated. Too much water can starve the newly developing roots of oxygen and hinder their development.

Step 8

Move the cutting to a larger pot after it has taken root. This usually takes six to eight weeks and is apparent by the plant's production of new leaves on the stem.

Step 9

Plant your fig tree in the garden the winter following propagation. Choose a spot that gets lots of morning sun and has sandy, loamy soil that will drain well.

Things You'll Need

  • Pruning shears
  • Planting pot
  • Rooting mix
  • Potting soil
  • Hormone rooting powder


  • Texas A&M University: Home Fig Fruit Production
  • California Rare Fruit Growers: Fig Fruit Facts
  • The University of Tennessee: Figs In The Home Planting

Who Can Help

  • National Arboretum: USDA Plant Hardiness Zone Map
Keywords: propagating fruit trees, growing fruit trees at home, the home fruit orchard

About this Author

Olivia Parker has been a freelance writer with Demand Studios for the past year, writing for Garden Guides and eHow. She has studied herbal and alternative medicine and worked as a landscape artist and gardener. Parker is currently pursuing a Bachelors of Arts from Boston University Online.