I planted it in spring, and it's grown to about 1.8m since then. No branching yet, still just straight up and down. It's mulched, which should help with protection, hopefully, and is also planted close to a west-facing wall and in a spot that is relatively sheltered from wind.
My late Italian grandfather used to tie a thick layer of newspapers around the trunk of his fig tree every fall to protect it from the cold Pennsylvania winters. It worked very well for him for years. You can’t believe how many figs that tree used to produce.
I live in a cold area in the hills and the frost comes in and kills anything not hardened.
But the trick that everyone here uses is to wrap a layer of whatever around is, so hessian, shade cloth, newspaper, etc. The frost apparently "rolls" in, so moves along at ground level, so by wrapping something around is will protect it.
Personally I cannot be bothered with all that, so if the frost kills it, I am not meant to grow it