Grow a fig tree by choosing the right variety, planting the tree at the right time, choosing a sunny location and using well-drained soil. Water the tree regularly, and only add fertilizer to remedy poor growth.
Choose a variety of fig tree depending on the type of figs produced and the size of the tree. Some trees only grow up to 15 feet tall, while others are taller with a wider spread. Because fig trees are self-pollinating, only one is necessary, which is good for small spaces.
Choose a location in which to plant the tree that has plenty of full or partial sun with rich, well-drained soil. For potted fig trees, use potting soil mixed with organic material or mulch. Plant the tree slightly deeper in the ground than it was in the pot, making sure to spread out the roots before filling the hole with soil. Apply a thick layer of mulch around the tree to inhibit weed growth and keep the soil moist.
Water the tree at least once a week. Feed it only if it fails to thrive or is growing in a container by adding a nitrogen-rich fertilizer to the soil in the late winter, spring, summer and midsummer. Prune the tree by only removing dead, damaged or diseased limbs.
Fig trees can be tricky to grow in the ground because they are susceptible to cold weather. In areas where the temperature regularly dips below 10 degrees Fahrenheit, a fig tree should be planted in a large container instead of the ground.
Fig plants rarely suffer from insect infestation or disease but birds can be a nuisance. Covering fig trees with netting helps to keep birds away. Covering the base of the trees with wood ashes helps to keep ants away from ripening fruit.
Fig trees can usually be harvested twice throughout the year, once in early June and then again in late summer. The figs are ready to pick when they turn either brown or golden and the fruit is soft to the touch, with the skin possibly starting to split.