How to Overwinter a Potted Brown Turkey fiG?

I have a lovely Brown Turkey fig that is on my deck in a huge patio pot. The pot is 20" high and 20" across. This is not something I want to bring indoors during the winter. It would be the size of a small fridge.
How do I best protect it? I have had several options recommended to me, such as wrapping the entire pot and tree in burlap and filling the loosely wrapped tree part with leaves. I know that the wonderful Italian gardeners in this area sometimes take a yard-rooted fig and bend it over into a shallow dug trench & bury it for the winter. Obviously, that isn't an option with a tub plant, and so I turn to the wisdom on this group.
I am in northern NJ in zone 7.
Boron
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Everything involves manhandling the plant with no guarantees in a severe winter. You could take a few cuttings and winter them as houseplants.
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you live in zone 7 and you're afraid your NORTHERN brown turkey will not overwinter??????? excuse me...am i missing something here???? i live in nhz4a and "I" am the one who needs worry about overwintering this tree, although i realise no matter what i do for it, it'll die down to ground level and put out new shoots come the spring.
tell you what...you contact me come spring and if i am not right...i'll buy you a brand new fig tree.
imho, if you still are having worries, take the little tree and situate it as close to your house as possible, in the south west corner. you may tie it to the railing or whatever you have in that corner to prevent it from getting knocked over by the wind...but anything else???? no way!!!
if you had posted your real email address without the b.s., i would have contacted you privately as to spare you any embarrassment...but, hey!! i do my best.

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<HTML> <HEAD> <TITLE>Re: How to Overwinter a Potted Brown Turkey fiG?</TITLE></HEAD> <BODY> you live in zone 7 and you're afraid your <B>NORTHERN <FONT COLOR="#5B3D23">brown turkey</FONT></B> will not overwinter??????? &nbsp;excuse me...am i m=issing something here????<BR> i live in nhz4a and &quot;I&quot; am the one who needs worry about overwintering this tree, although i realise no matter what i do for it, it'll die down to ground level and put out new shoots come the spring.<BR> <BR> tell you what...you contact me come spring and if i am not right...i'll buy you a brand new fig tree. &nbsp;<BR> <BR> imho, if you still are having worries, take the little tree and situate it as close to your house as possible, in the south west corner. &nbsp;you may tie it to the railing or whatever you have in that corner to prevent it from getting knocked over by the wind...but anything else???? &nbsp;no way!!!<BR><BR> if you had posted your real email address without the b.s., i would have contacted you privately as to spare you any embarrassment...but, hey!! i do my best.<BR> <BR> &gt; From: Boron Elgar &lt;boron snipped-for-privacy@hotmail.com&gt;<BR> &gt; Newsgroups: rec.gardens.edible<BR> &gt; Date: Sun, 29 Aug 2004 11:37:24 -0400<BR> &gt; Subject: How to Overwinter a Potted Brown Turkey fiG?<BR> &gt; <BR> &gt; I have a lovely Brown Turkey fig that is on my deck in a huge patio<BR>&gt; pot. The pot is 20&quot; high and 20&quot; across. This is not something I want<BR> &gt; to bring indoors during the winter. It would be the size of a small<BR>&gt; fridge.<BR> &gt; <BR> &gt; How do I best protect it? I have had several options recommended to<BR>&gt; me, such as wrapping the entire pot and tree in burlap and filling the<BR> &gt; loosely wrapped tree part with leaves. I know that the wonderful<BR> &gt; Italian gardeners in this area sometimes take a yard-rooted fig and<BR>&gt; bend it over into a shallow dug trench &amp; bury it for the winter.<BR> &gt; Obviously, that isn't an option with a tub plant, and so I turn to the<BR> &gt; wisdom on this group.<BR> &gt; <BR> &gt; I am in northern NJ in zone 7. <BR> &gt; <BR> &gt; Boron<BR> </BODY> </HTML>
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You own me a Mission and a Brown Turkey already. Both were nursery graded and specifically grown for this climate. Both were protected over winters milder than the zone rating. Both failed to emerge in spring. Both were tub grown. We have a specialized situation her that you seem unable to grasp.
By all means, if you wish to try a bit of googling for overwintering the BTs with no damage, be my guest. You will see the difficulties that can ensue.
As I mentioned, local gardeners often bury their trees but this is not possible with mine. I realize that you probably think you know more than the locals here, and you may amuse yourself and continue to do so.

fruiter this year. The wind is not a problem, either, but the freeze and thaw cycles are.

I do not post on usenet to make you happy, nor am I particularly tolerant of top-posting fools who make sweeping, generalized claims that cannot be backed up. I am an experienced gardner and your insulting post is worthless.
Go play in the granite.
Boron
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This is entirely correct. Potted and in the ground are totally different beasts. Even a very large pot will freeze solid given enough hours below. I have, for example, lost all lemon balm plants planted in an old capped well. The walls of the well are 1ft thick, the "pot" is 2.5 ft wide and 3 ft deep, so it was much better protected than a regular pot. Lemon balm, of course, is hardy to Zone 4 (Zone 5.5 here). The difference is in the thermal flow from below. So Boron has two choices (three, assuming he wants to risk losing the fig): bring the fig in, or bury the fig pot. Even burying it will not eliminate the risk of a truly severe winter, unless good part of the fig is buried also.
More desperate measures include placing the pot near the dryer vent, wrapping the fig in insulation (including underneath the pot), and placing a deicing cable inside the insulation. The insulation alone will not prevent a kill if the freeze lasts more than a day. Also, venting the dryer directly onto a cold fig willl probably cause the fig's bark to split severely. All are somewhat labor intensive. In my tunnels hardy greens overwinter easily, the tunnel alone (a thin poly film) giving them about 1.5 zones, with the ground acting as thermal ballast. You could also consider buying a 55 gallon drum, to be placed full of water inside the same insulation jacket as the fig, and somehow heating the drum for more even heating of the fig. The drum will take a few days to freeze in severe weather, and until then the temp will stay at 32 inside the jacket, giving you a bit more leeway on how to manage your fig's survival.
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On 31 Aug 2004 10:06:26 -0700, snipped-for-privacy@my-deja.com (simy1) wrote:

I want to thank all of you who have made these wonderful suggestions. I am beginning to think that these lovelies are just too tender to make it, regardless of what the Monrovia Nursery tags say.
I will give it a try this year & wrap the tree & use foam peanuts & leaves to insulate, and perhaps bury it part way with a tarp around it and leaves/peanuts under & around, but I am beginning to think that I will wind up with my figs as an annual....I have gotten wonderful prices on them by hitting the local garden center at just the right time, and as much as I love the Mediterranean look they give to my patio, I may just use tough love instead..
Boron
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My BIL built an enclosure 4' square and 8' high out of 2"x2" strapping and rigid foam insulation to fit around his fig tree. He placed a 100 watt bulb inside the enclosure for warmth. It worked for several years. Unfortunately, two years ago the bulb burned out sometime during the winter and the fig was toast in the spring. We are in Canadian Zone 5b which I think translates to USDA Zone 5. Ross, Ontario, Canada. New AgCanada Zone 5b 4319' North 8016' West To email, remove the obvious from my address.
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In the ground is always the safest place -- any reason not to plant it? How about digging a hole and putting the whole pot in, then. And the very best insulation is bubble wrap, which you can buy in huge rolls, wrap snugly around the trunk and pray it doesn't get REALLY cold. But the roots are what must really be kept from freezing - the top will come back if the roots don't freeze.
Denise

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On Thu, 2 Sep 2004 21:43:05 -0700, "Denise Bachman"

There is not enough light in the yard for it. Most of the yard is shaded. I grow cukes, beans, tomatoes, roses, peppers, herbs - all sorts of things - in pots on the deck because of the shade. The lemon & lime come indoor in the winter, but I am afriad the fig is just too big.
I am not sure digging a 3' x 3' hole is going got be much fun, nor is buying bubble wrap. The tree was under $40. Lovely as it is, I just may give it up to the gods or just do burlap & leaves.
Boron
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