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Dalmatie Fig | Comprehensive Variety Review

Updated: Jan 28, 2023

1. Introduction

I've created a series of blog posts that contain comprehensive information on fig varieties that are what I could consider standards. There are 1000s of fig varieties in existence, but figs like Dalmatie are usually easy to find, they're inexpensive, and are a classic fig variety that you ought to know like the back of your hand. Check out the other blog posts on the other varieties I've covered in the variety directory here:

2. Growing Characteristics

  • Origin: Unknown

  • Categorization: Bifere

  • Similar varieties: Stella, Makedonian White, San Pietro, Staten Island Bomb, Vasilika Sika (BC), White Greek, Leon's Montenegro, Gayet, Marot, Henderson Green

  • Taste grouping: Complex Berry Texture: Jammy

  • Size: Large

  • Ripening period: Mid-Late

  • Vigor: High

  • Rain resistance: High

  • Split Resistance: Medium

  • Shape: Ovoidal

  • Hang time: Average

  • Climate preference: Well adapted

  • Hardiness: High

  • Taste rating: 4.7/5

  • Light requirements: Above average

  • Productivity: High

3. History

The origin of Dalmatie is unknown to me, but I think a lot of growers would probably agree that the French are responsible for making this fig popular in Europe. France is a culture that deeply respects food and so it is because of them that Dalmatie is another standard variety worth knowing about if you're a serious fig hobbyist. It's one of the classics.

4. Description

Dalmatie is a very large, green-skinned, red interior fig that has an exquisite eating experience. Because of its thick texture, I was quite surprised, and to me, that makes it among the best tasting figs that you can grow. Similar to Black Madeira, it's very sweet and filled with nectar, but they also maintain a thick pulp.

What's shocking to me about Dalmatie is its flavor in relation to its size. I can't think of a fig as large as Dalmatie that tastes nearly as good. In fact, the brebas can be as large as 200 grams or more.

Usually in humid climates, the larger the fig is, the worse it tastes. A lot of it in actuality has to do with the shape and Dalmatie has the perfect oval or ovoidal shape for a humid climate. It doesn't split easily and if it does, it's not major.

Overall it's just a very well-adapted, large, and tasty fig. It's a fast grower, productive and hardy.

Dalmatie's similarity to Adriatic figs:

Growers often mistake it for an Adriatic type fig. I know I did when I first got into growing figs. Just because it has green skin and a red interior, doesn't mean that they all will taste like an intense alpine strawberry or an intense raspberry like the Adriatic figs do.

An Adriatic type fig means that it is very similar to the fig variety called White Adriatic which was grown commercially in California many years ago along with Black Mission. Unfortunately, it goes by many names as many popular commercial figs inevitably attain. The Adriatic fig is much smaller and flatter in shape. The only resemblance is in the skin and pulp colors and berry-like flavor, so beware!

In terms of flavor, Dalmatie seems to have a much sweeter flavor than the more acidic and well-balanced flavor of an Adriatic fig, but the raspberry or strawberry-like berry flavor is somewhat similar.

Gayet - a fig similar to Dalmatie:

Gayet is the name of the fig variety that's photographed below. I decided to trial Gayet here because it is a Dalmatie-type fig that I was hoping would be smaller in size with a more slender shape.

A consistently more slender fig would make it a bit of a better choice over Dalmatie in humid climates. So far that's not the case as the tree did not produce as much fruit as I would have liked and therefore a lot of energy was directed to only 4 fruits. They were all massive. ~150ish grams.

I don't have a ton to say about the epigenetic differences between Gayet vs. Dalmatie yet, but I'm sure that it's quite hardy like Dalmatie, it does produce breba and overall it is of a large size. I was very surprised to learn that the pulp is exquisite. That nectar in the void is extremely good and that gives it a super thick texture.

5. Conclusion

Dalmatie is a classic fig variety known for its large size, sweet nectar-filled pulp, and excellent taste. Although its origin is unknown, it is believed to be popularized in Europe by the French. Its red interior and green skin is often mistaken for Adriatic fig, but the two varieties have different tastes and textures. Dalmatie's sweet taste and well-adapted, large size make it a favorite among fig hobbyists. The brebas can be as large as 200 grams and are sweet with a thick texture.

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I'm Ross, the "Fig Boss." A YouTuber educating the world on the wonderful passion of growing fig trees. Apply my experiences to your own fig journey to grow the best tasting food possible.
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