Friday, June 16, 2017

Rooting figs in agar. Let's get Nerdy and grow figs via Tissue Culture

Tissue culture plants isn't a new thing but it's relatively new to Figs. I've purchased a few varieties grown in this method and they tend to grow very bushy with lots of suckers. I wanted to try this for rare figs since it would make sense to put so much effort into growing a Dessert King this way.

After some research, I purchased some key ingredients to making the agar gel.


Distilled Water
Plain Agar powder
Kinetin .1 gram dissolved in 100 ml if water. then use 2.5 MLs of that solution
Sterilizing Tablets
Cups with caps

The most important part of this process is keeping your work space super duper clean. Which is tough because I have 2 small boys that are constantly sick and love getting into everything.

After mixing the ingredients accordingly and microwaving the solution until the agar is melted into the water I poured the solution into pre sterilized cups and wrapped them with saran wrap.

The point of this project is to easily reproduce rare varieties without having to lose too much wood from doing cuttings. I pinched my Ponte Tresa (which is somewhat rare still) to induce branching and fig production. I took the tip, washed it in bleach and alcohol to get ride of any mold spores. I then cut the green stem into little pieces and placed them into the agar gel with nutrients.

Keep in mind to spray all of your equipment with your alcohol solution. You cannot be too cautious about that. The last thing you want is a petri dish full of mold.

This is my 1st crack at this and for all I know I could've just made a cultivation for a bunch of bacteria but we shall see. More to come.

Update: 6/15/17
Just as I feared, looks like I did not properly clean the cuttings and I've got a crazy amount of mold growing.

6/25/17 Round 2: This time I'm using a Black Madeira. Cleaned extra long with bleach, alcohol, and hydrogen peroxide. I also made sure to clean my tweezers. They may have been the culprit the last time.

Update: 7/5/17
Well I'm really good at growing mold. Keeping a sterile environment is much harder than it seems.

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