What You Need To Know Before Buying Fig Cuttings
This is a crucial time of the year for buying fig cuttings. Doing your research and knowing your source is critical!
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But..., and this is a big BUT! Many of us have not done our due diligence, research and specially background check on the people or business you potentially intent to buy from. There are many, many great people and businesses to buy from but you can read here to find out more about trusted and reputable sellers to buy from. This blog will help you open your eyes as to what you should be aware of, look out for and avoid whenever you're ready to buy your fig cuttings.
Fact is, that in every hobby, there are always bad apples which can easily destroy the good bunch and fig collecting is no different. I have been researching figs for a little while now and in doing so, I have come across so many different types of people and businesses that bring nothing but shame to the hobby.
The first thing you will see this time of year all over the place (forums, dishonest auction houses, ebay, social media, etsy) are posts of cuttings up for sale. Many are advertised as "the new best tasting" or "the newest find". Some go as far as claiming it is so new, you'll be the first to own it for just $300 and up! So before you go ahead and give your money to just anyone, here are some things to look for and how to look up or search people/businesses to know more about their intent and reputation:
- Search for the variety name. There are many great places to search like Fig Database, Google, forums such as Our Figs and the new The Fig Spot and even on facebook. These are all good sources. If you can't find any good information on that particular variety, that's one good reason for you to stop immediately and now research the seller.
- Ask the seller as many questions as possible, such as: I can't find any information on this variety, where did you acquire it from? If they claim to be a new find, ask them "What state are you in where you found this new variety?". If they say any state outside of California, add that variety to a red flag. If you're still interested, as them "How long have you grown it for? Have you fruited it and can I see some pictures of the fruit? Have you attempted to find if there is any other variety which may the same or a synonym of this variety? If you get ignored, indirect answers and or re-questioned, that is for sure a variety and seller to avoid at all cause.
- Research the seller/business. So the seller/business has pictures of the tree, fruit and even a fairy tale history on it, now you need to do a reseach on the sellers reputation and standing in the fig community. Search their names on the sites mentioned on 1. Ask friends if they've ever heard of or bought from that individual or business. Go back to their social media pages and read thru their posts. Pay close atention to whether that seller/business is questioned by others, do they act as if they have been around for a while, do they engage with the community, what contributions do they provide or do they just promote, promote, promote? You should easily identify an honest seller/business from that of one just looking to make a buck from you and the rest.
You'd be surprised at what you can find by doing your due diligence. Please take those points above into account, especially during this time of year and later when people start selling plants instead of cuttings. I have seen people renaming varieties and sell them at ridiculous prices and even after being caught, still continue to sell because people don't research enough before purchasing. I have seen people posting figs filled with substance like syrup or honey, fig images that have been so edited, the figs look like something out of an acid trip delusional dream with rainbows and colors that are nonexistent on any other fruits. And of course, in blasting these findings, a dishonest seller or business will do it's best to silence you in an attempt to stop you from spreading what you have found as I have been from places like figbid, groups on facebook such as Fig Addiction for exposing the admin Ryan B D'Souza.
If you search good, you'll come across things like the ones posted below which should automatically tell you to either stay away or really reconsider giving your money to people like these.
When exposing those varieties that have been found to be the same as others which are readily available and can be found for $15 but the persons renaming them asked buyers for $200 in the past under a made up name (Read the article here)..... Then you get blocked from such groups. Unfortunately, people also buy from dishonest people like Ryan which is also owner of Fig Agro Lab Asia. Soon you'll see how they go on a mission to take your hard earned money. The hyping that goes on by them is astonishing to say the least. You have been warned and recommended to stay away from sellers like that.
Now lets talk about those you'll find selling with images that were so saturated, the figs look like a little kid had nothing but highlighters to paint the images with. Such as the images from our friend Nikky, of Italy. I'm not gonna lie, he has found some amazing figs like Dolce Calderai and Zaffiro. If he would only keep from saturating his 10,000 new fig find images more original, that would help out a lot or make him more trustworthy.
And lets not forget the fig hunters from all over the place. I love this one! You have people just starting out and within a month, they are already finding and freaking renaming figs! Like seriousely, people from Louisiana, Georgia, North and South Carolina, NY, NJ.... the list keeps on and on. Literally, people see a fig tree, cut off branches, don't try to find out even what variety it may be (and if they do it's for a week), feel it's ok to rename the darn thing, don't even fruit it and start selling it. Like WTF is wrong with these people?
Even in California you'll find or I'm sure you've heard of people so bad, they take other people's finds, re-name them and then start selling them for high money. Good thing is the word gets around and many collectors tend to stay away from these people and their businesses usually never grows big enough to destroy a great hobby.
The point is people that "YES YOU DO NEED TO DO YOUR DUE DILIGENCE"! If this is allowed and we do not speak, we are doing more harm to a great community than helping it and we should all help each other out and push this meritless type of people and businesses.
This is the time to buy from those you trust. A time to buy cuttings you have been so patiently waiting to be available so you can add it/them to your collection, why not do it in a safe and wise way? I hope this article helps you on your hunt for your next big fig variety in your collection. Be sure to join us at The Fig Spot where you can share, teach and enjoy an open free community.