Our long hot summer has bought on an abundance of figs. The tree is alive with silver eyes and twenty eights.
Picking figs in my nightie one morning, I caught a glimpse of two red eyes watching...very spooky! I pin pointed where they were and went to get my camera. After bashing my way through the branches, chasing the red eye balls, I I had fig sap in my hair. Okay, soap and hot water will fix it. Well, the goo turned to something that closely resembled varnish, my hair knotted and sticky, worse than when I had started! I had visions of having to cut a great hunk out of my golden locks. I decided I needed some radical treatment.
Heading for the essential oils, thinking sticky, I selected trusty old eucalyptus .I often use it to remove stickers, bitumen marks, gum and stubborn labels from jars. I sloshed some on a paper towel and rubbed at the goo vigorously. After rinsing in cold water, my hair was free of tangled and sap, lovely and soft. Magic!
I was left pondering if it was the hot water that set the sap and what other properties fig sap might have? Mrs Grieves Herbal recommends fig sap for wart removal (but warns it may raise blisters on normal skin as it creates inflammation.) Fig leaves can be used to produce a natural yellow dye when used with alum as a mordant and it turns out that they belong to the same family as the India rubber plant, ficus elastica (isn’t that a great name?)
It turned out that the eyeballs were the work of the silver eyes who had eaten a cave into the sunny side of the fruit with two little pecks facing me. A few interesting photos and a mystery solved. I took my unsticky self and my basket of figs off to breakfast. - another day of amazement in the garden!