The fig grew several inches last year and was very healthy: lush leaves, sweet fruit and not one pest. Nonetheless I felt guilty about not having repotted it and was worried about the state of its roots. I know how fast roots can grow in a pot and wrap themselves round and round the circumferance of it, and it looks plain uncomfortable. The point is that the roots need to be able to absorb nutrients, and the fewer new, fine roots there are, the less efficiently this can be achieved.
After some very rough hauling, shoving and just a little cursing, I managed to free the rootball from the container. It was packed tight with roots, with no free soil to spare. The roots were so tight that I could not loosen them to do a careful trim, and landed up hacking an inch away all round, with the Felcos working very hard. Then I repotted it with an organic potting soil, and gave it a good drink (Noilly Prat with a dash of Cassis - makes the figs taste better).
After reading this article afterwards, though, I think I may go back in today, and remove more from the bottom of the rootball,which I left untouched. The weather is still cool, and I feel a little braver. The article is about bonsais, but I feel that my 3' tall and wide fig falls into the nebulous category between bonsai and bona fide small fruit tree.
The moss. It was actually the luxurious mat of moss that told me that the pot was full of roots. Moss just loves the tightly packed foundation of a mass of roots. I saved the moss, and will see what it thinks of the New Dawn pot.