There are many fig varieties available to plant in the home garden, many of which are cold tolerant to temperatures of 15 degrees and 20 degrees Fahrenheit. When temperatures reach below these readings, the top limbs and trunk can be damaged. While there are modern varieties which are cold tolerant to lower temperatures, such as the Hardy Chicago, in some cases the upper limbs may still have to be protected. Protecting these fig trees does require some effort, but the results will be seen the following year.
Construct a woven wire fence pen around the fig tree. Use the wire bin to hold leaves much like a wire compost bin.
Collect leaves from around your yard with the leaf rake in early fall. Fill the woven wire fence bin with the leaves. Push the leaves down to compact the material around the limbs of the fig tree.
Fill plastic leave bags with leaves, then place them on top of the leaves already in the bin. You can also stack the leaves around the woven wire leaf bin to further insulate the fig tree.
Make the woven wire fence bin as high as needed to protect the majority of the fruit-producing tree limbs. In some cases, you may have to trim back the fig tree to keep it the size of a large bush instead of a full tree. The further north the climate, the more insulated the fig tree limbs needs to be during the cold winter months.