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Breba or fig?

13 years ago

Will someone kindly tell me the difference between a Breba and a fig?

Thanks for your help.


Comments (14)

  • pitangadiego

    All brebas are figs, but not all figs are brebas. Figs can have as many as three crops. The first crop, which forms on the previous years wood, is called breba. The second crop is usually called "main", and is produced on THIS years new growth. Some have a third crop, but have never witnessed this.

  • etneo0


    There is a very simple trick to know if the fruit you are looking at is a breba or a fig.

    A breba grows below leaves (normal, it is on previous year branch), while a fig grows above leaves (normal it is on this year growth).

    Also, there is one variety producing 3 times, which I know of, and which exists in Italy.

    This green fruit variety produces :

    - a few fioroni (breba) end of May (extremely early season, even for Italy, where it should be mid-June, beg July)

    - a lot of large forniti (main crop) by end of July (also very early for Italy, should be mid-August, beg of September).

    - a good amount of cimaruoli (unknown word in English) until end of October (in Italy)

    I will try to buy one beginning of next year, as it should prove to be able to produce a major crop end of August-beg of September, in my poor summer region, with a very long winter...

    Hope this helps,


  • gorgi


    >>> A breba grows below leaves (normal, it is on previous
    year branch), while a fig grows above leaves (normal it
    is on this year growth).

    WHAT?! I guess I need to more observant! Any pictures to
    illustrate this and save me the effort?

    Thanks for the other info.
    George (NJ).

  • gorgi

    I meant the fruit being above/below the leaf...

  • nanelle_gw (usda 9/Sunset 14)

    How is cimaruoli different from main?

  • hemnancy

    My Negrone fig starts lots of little figs but the growing season is not long enough to ripen them, but with global warming if they make it through a mild winter they ripen the next year. I will have to look at them to see how they are placed with the leaves. I have a couple of newer trees- Brown Turkey and Stella, that had tiny figs in early spring but they fell off, and newer figs grew later, I suppose main. I'm wondering if they will have time to ripen this year. Time will tell.

  • etneo0


    I don't have the plant, so I could not observe the behaviours or the variations of cimaruoli... I read the information in an Italian fig cultivar book, and on some on-line Italian fig information (in Italian).

    Maybe one day I'll get the plant (maybe next year)...

  • nanelle_gw (usda 9/Sunset 14)

    Well, what I mean is Breba is on last years wood, "main" is on this years wood; is the third crop just later figs on this years wood?

  • gorgi

    To further clarify my previous post, and less confuse
    other people, what I meant is that, from the best of my
    knowledge, all new fruit/branch (shoot) buds are ABOVE
    the current leaf node.

    Please correct me if you know otherwise...

  • ellencampbell

    Dodging the raindrops, I just came back from inspecting my fig tree. I can definitely report, that the main crop fruit sprouts just above a leaf stem. For a given branch there are a series of leaves, just above each leaf stem a fig is growing. As to the structure of the breba vis-a-vis leaves? Well I'll just have to wait until next year to be sure. But an educated guess says the fruit comes off the branch just below the newly sprouted leaves of the current year's growth.

  • vincentp

    I often get brebas on my container figs but they fall to the ground while they are still small. Any idea why they detatch and fall?

  • Suzi AKA DesertDance So CA Zone 9b

    I had to google this because I was very confused, and now I know. I have only baby figs on my tree. It appears there are new ones each day. I'll see if they stay on the tree now. My tree is in a container.

  • okara0588

    Found this pic showing breba vs figs. (fruit held in hand is breba, all the other fruit are figs). You can see in this pic that the breba is growing directly under the leaf and that the each fig grows directly above the leaf. You can also see that the breba is the only fully grown fruit - all the figs still have a ways to go before ripening!

  • fignewbies


    The fig fruit held in the hand looks so big!

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