Our fig tree at Stone House is having a banner summer. It was thirsty, and the winter rains were very kind to it. Its foliage now spreads across our front window to the east – blocking our view of the horse pasture across the street. We have to step out onto the front steps to watch the Clydesdale’s afternoon shenanigans. Hundreds of hard green figs hang on the tree from top to bottom.
There are also a handful of huge figs – each one almost too big to hold in one hand. They are streaked with shades of purple and brown. The sweet flesh inside is a seed-filled rosy pink. They are delicious.
I was telling a friend about our monster figs; a friend who’s wise in the ways of produce. He explained that the monsters are the breba crop, or in Spanish (which I think sounds prettier), the breva crop. These are figs that develop in the spring on last year’s shoot growth. The main fig crop develops on the current year’s shoot growth and ripens in late summer or early fall. It’s rare for the breva crop to make it to maturity; they’re usually killed by spring frosts.
Our breva crop feels auspicious. How lucky we are.