The word Celeste derives from the Latin word heavenly. We can only assume that means the Celeste Fig is divine. With its charming coloring, sweet flavor, and ability to tolerate harsher weather than most figs, some might consider it a sacred fruit.
Read on to learn all about the Celeste Fig.
Looking to buy a Celeste Fig tree? Check availability.
The Celeste Fig Tree produces a rose or violet-colored fruit with a brown tint. Sink your teeth into this fruit, and you’ll meet a sweet, honey flavor.
This tree, which grows 10 to 15 feet tall when mature, is hardier than most fig varieties, tolerating cold and hot weather with proper fig tree care. It’s a closed-eye fig, meaning it keeps out wasps and pests. Therefore, it produces more unspoiled ripe fruit than other figs.
This fig is sometimes called the Celestial or Sugar Fig. It was first cultivated in 5000 BC in Western Asia and the Old World Mediterranean, making its way to Europe in the early 1500s, Mexico in 1560, and arriving in the Eastern United States in 1669.
Today, the Celeste Fig is a favorite among fruit growers in California and throughout the southeastern United States. It is the parent to several other fig varieties, including O’Rourke, Champagne, and Tiger.
Ways to Enjoy the Celeste Fig
Celeste figs are best in desserts because of their sweetness. Halve and grill your celeste fig, then serve it on ice cream or yogurt for a quick, easy dessert.
They can be used in salads for a sweet splash of fruit. Many also like to serve celeste figs as a side paired with meats and cheeses.
These figs pair well with honey, balsamic, or agave nectar and are great to toss with salads. You can also snack on them right off the vine.
They’re best eaten fresh, but you can preserve them by drying, freezing, or canning them.
Edible Fig Leaf
The leaf of this variety is also edible and tasty. Fig leaves are used for grilling, steaming, and baking, where their smokey flavor infuses the dish. You can also use dehydrated leaves in teas. Fig-leaf tea has been shown to help increase milk production in nursing moms.
Fig leaves taste vanilla, coconut, and nutty. They taste nothing like the actual fruit. Use fresh leaves because older leaves taste bland and will not provide flavorful results.
The leaves make great wraps for steamed fish, rice, or vegetables. The leaves can be added as a spinach alternative in stews or soups.
Ensure you wash the leaves thoroughly and remove the stem because the white sap on the leaf can be an irritant.
Health Benefits of the Celeste Fig
Figs are nutrient-rich, and the perfect addition to a healthy diet. They contain fiber, potassium, and magnesium. Fiber helps your bowels stay healthy and promotes healthy cholesterol levels; potassium normalizes fluids in your cells; and magnesium supports muscle and nerve function.
This fruit is also a great source of calcium, which aids in developing strong bones. Figs have more calcium than other fruits, especially in their dried variety. You can get 5 percent of your daily value of calcium from 40 grams of dried figs.
Ripe figs are rich in an antioxidant called polyphenols. Some studies have linked polyphenols to protect against certain cancers, heart diseases, diabetes, and neurodegenerative diseases.
Benefits for New Moms and Babies
Did you know the health benefits of figs can pass through breast milk to newborn babies? Fig leaf tea helps with milk production, and fresh and dried figs also provide many health benefits to moms and babies. You can eat two to three figs every day to help increase your baby’s immune system.
Once you’re introducing foods to your baby, slowly introduce them to figs to make sure they’re not allergic, then offer figs with their regular meals. Figs are great for babies with weak digestive systems because the fruit acts as a natural laxative.
Learn to Grow the Celeste Fig
This fig grows best in USDA Zones 6-10, although you may be able to grow this fig tree in zone 5 with special care. Wrapping them in layers of burlap and fallen leaves in late autumn will help protect the fig trees from severe cold.
If you don’t want to deal with winterizing your tree, you can grow your fig tree in a container, which will allow you to bring it indoors during severe temperatures.
If you grow your fig in a container, remember to allow it to go dormant. Allowing figs to go dormant is essential for having a bountiful harvest each year.
Fertilizing and Watering
Celeste fig trees that are only one or two years old should be fertilized every month, but older trees usually only need fertilizing twice a year.
Avoid over-pruning this fig tree because this will damage fruit production. Read our helpful article on pruning fig trees to properly trim your tree.
Celeste fig trees are closed-eye, discouraging dried fruit beetles and rots. Due to this, they are disease-resistant, but it’s always a good idea to read up on potential fig tree diseases to watch for.
This fig produces fruit twice a year for harvest: once in early summer and once in late summer through early fall
Ripe figs are soft when gently squeezed.
Where to Buy the Celeste Fig
Check local nurseries for this divine fruit tree. You’ll have the best chance of finding them in California and the southeastern United States. Stark Bros sells the Celeste Fig online.
Frequently Asked Questions
Do Celeste Figs need a pollinator?
No. This fig tree is self-pollinating and grows successfully on its own.
Are Celeste Figs easy to grow?
This fig tree is low maintenance and easy to grow. It’s a great tree for first-time fig growers, especially due to its closed eye keeping pests and diseases at bay.
Wrapping up the Celeste Fig
The divine Celeste Fig is the perfect fruit tree addition to your home or backyard. You’ll quickly fall in love with its delicious fruit and its low-maintenance care.
Are you looking to learn more about fig trees? Check out our Fig Tree page to read all about other varieties and fig tree growing tips.