Cold hardy down to 10 degrees F, The Celeste Fig Tree is fast growing and produces delectable, sweet fruit ideal for eating fresh, making jams, or preserving. The trees are resistant to many pests and diseases that plague other fruit trees, and they produce large crops of figs. All of these attributes make the Celeste Fig Tree one of the most desirable fruit trees you can grow.
Also called the Celestial Fig, the Celeste Fig grows to a mature size of 10 feet tall and 10 feet wide. The trees are a striking bright green with large leaves that can be as big as 10 to 12 inches across. The big leaves protect the fruit from the direct sunlight the tree needs to grow at its best. The fruit features a closed eye habit, that stops rot, and certain insects from attacking the ripening figs. This, combined with the Celeste Fig Tree’s fast growing nature, is what helps the tree make so many delicious, nutritious figs.
Fig Tree Care
The Celeste Fig Tree is suited to growing outdoors in USDA Zones 7 to 11. This wide range and the tree’s relatively small size, make it a perfect addition to gardens both large and small. The Celeste Fig Tree is self-fertile and will make ample fruit with only one tree. Two Celeste Fig Trees, however, will produce a larger yield.
Plant in a location that gets as much full sun as possible. The Celeste Fig Tree prefers rich, loamy soil that is well drained. Because of this, they make a good companion to citrus. Space Celeste Fig Trees at least 10 feet apart and do not plant directly against buildings, walls, or shrubs. The Celeste Fig Tree likes its own space, and will resent excessive raking, hoeing, and digging around its roots. You can also grow a Celeste Fig Tree in a pot, as long as you refresh the soil or re pot at least once every three years.
Fruit & Harvesting
The Celeste Fig Tree blooms in spring and the fast-growing fruit is ripe in July. Fruits start out as dark green and mature into a gorgeous purple blush that retains a few green streaks. The pulp is sweet and succulent, making these figs great for eating fresh out of hand, or for using in jellies, sauces, desserts, and other recipes.
Pick the fruit once it has turned a deep burgundy or purple and do a taste test to determine ripeness. The Celeste Fig Tree is fast growing and a fast fruit producer. Most trees will produce fruit their first year. Celeste Figs are not only quick to grow, but they are filled with nutrition. They contain fiber, potassium, Vitamins A, C, K, and calcium among other minerals and antioxidants.
Plant your Celeste Fig Tree in a well drained location that will be free from continual soil disturbance once planted. For example, planting a Celeste Fig among other fruit trees in an area that can be mulched and watered is far better than planting one along a gravel driveway that has to be continually weeded and edged.
The upright shape of a mature Celeste Fig Tree makes a pleasing shape for the garden or patio, but the branches tend to spread and the tree does not respond well to constant hedging or decorative shaping. You can prune the Celeste Fig to maintain it at a certain size, but only prune in winter, when the tree is dormant. First cut away any dead or dying branches. Then cut back the main branches by one-quarter to one-third of their overall length. Pruning in this way will encourage a vibrant bloom in spring.
Can I grow a Celeste Fig Tree in my area?
You can grow a Celeste Fig Tree in the ground in USDA Growing Zones 7 to 11. The tree is cold hardy down to 10 degrees F. If you live in an area where winter temperatures fall below this (USDA Zones 6 or lower) you can grow your Celeste Fig Tree in a pot, and over-winter it indoors.
How long after blooming, can I expect to harvest Celeste Figs?
The Celeste Fig Tree blooms in spring and the small fruits appear within weeks. Once the fruit begins to grow it will mature and become ripe in 3 to 4 months. If your Celeste Fig Tree blooms in early to mid March, it is likely that you can be eating figs as early as July.
What are some uses for Celeste Figs?
Celeste Figs are a superior fruit, described as honey-sweet with a juicy succulent pulp with tiny, edible, crunchy seeds. It can be used as a spread fresh from the tree. You can also dry figs, and they are great for making preserves, jams, jellies, and paste used in baking. Recipes for salads, desserts, and treats made using fresh figs are nearly endless.
Does the Celeste Fig Tree need a pollinator?
No. The Celeste Fig Tree is self-fertile and will produce a healthy harvest of figs without a second pollinating tree.