The Fiddle Leaf Fig Tree is easily recognised by its large, veined, violin-shaped leaves. The plant has an upright growth habit and the foliage is decoratively stacked up the stem making it a popular indoor plant to bring greenery to homes.
Fiddle Leaf Fig plants make great large indoor plants and are great at adding style as a floor standing plant. Indoors, they can reach heights of around 6ft tall but in the wild will sometimes grow up to 40 feet.
Native to the tropics, the Ficus lyrata variety likes a warm and humid environment which can make them a little more temperamental when it comes to indoor care. Not to worry, our guide to Fiddle Leaf Fig care will keep you in check when it comes to keeping your plant healthy.
How to Care for a Fiddle Leaf Fig Tree
Fiddle Leaf Fig Tree Soil
Fiddle Leaf Fig Trees aren’t too fussy when it comes to soil, like most house plants, all they require is that it is light, aerated and well-draining. Most high-quality indoor plant potting soil will do just fine.
Planting, Potting and Repotting
Ficus lyrata is a vigorous growing plant and can be repotted annually until it’s reached the desired height. We recommend repotting out of the nursery pot that the plant arrives in.
Fiddle Leaf Fig Light Needs
Finding the right lighting a little fiddly? The Fiddle Leaf Fig is a bright light plant and needs a good few hours of sunlight per day but never direct sun. Choose an area by a bright window, south, east and west-facing windows are preferable. North facing windows rarely allow for the right amount of light, especially over the winter.
Watering your Fiddle Leaf Fig
As Fiddle Leaf Fig Plants are originally found in tropical rainforests they are used to damp, humid conditions with brief dry periods in between.
Water your plant little but often. Keep the soil moist but not wet and leaves to dry out slightly between each watering. Avoid letting the compost dry out too much as the plant may start to drop its leaves.
Unsure whether you should water your plant or not? Simply feel the top couple inches of soil, if it still feels slightly damp, try again in a couple of days. If it’s dry to the touch, add some water.
Signs of Over or Under Watering
Both under and overwatering are common mistakes people make when it comes to caring for their indoor plants.
Overwatering may start to cause root rot which your plant may struggle to come back from. Yellowing and browning of the leaves are an indication of overwatering.
If your plant starts to wilt or drop its leaves then there is a chance that it has been overwatered. Feel the soil, if it feels quite damp then avoid adding any more water until the first couple of inches of compost have dried out again.
Your Fiddle Leaf Fig Tree may also start to drop its leaves when it has been underwatered. If your plant has started to look a little droopy and wilted then it may need a good drink.
Fiddle Leaf Fig Feeding Needs
Match your feeding schedule with your plants growing season and only add fertiliser throughout spring and summer months. While Fiddle Leaf Fig Trees don’t need much in regards to fertiliser it can help to add some balanced liquid plant feed once a month when the plant is growing to give it an extra boost.
Fiddle Leaf Fig Humidity Needs
Fiddle Leaf Figs love a more humid environment. Misting the leaves around once a week will help increase the levels of humidity around the plant. Make sure to mist in the mornings so that the plant has time to soak it all up.
The generally increase the humidity around the plant, many people place a tray or dish of pebbles underneath the plant and fill with water. This way, as the water evaporates it increases the moisture levels in the air.
Fiddle Leaf Fig Temperature Needs
Fiddle Leaf Fig Trees are used to warm, humid environments and won’t tolerate any large variations in temperature.
Fiddle Leaf Fig Plants are used to warm, humid conditions like the jungle. Indoor room temperatures will usually keep your plant happy as long as it isn’t hit by any cold draughts or temperatures.
Fiddle Leaf Fig Pruning
Pruning for Fiddle Leaf Fig Trees can be done for a few different reasons such as:
- General Plant Health
- Attractive Shape
- Overcrowded/Crossing branches
- Keep at a manageable height
Dead, diseased or damaged branches can take a toll on a plants health. Rather than expending energy in putting out new growth it will be using it on feeding and supplying the damaged areas.
Removing the dying or damaged branches will help to keep the overall health of the plant and ensure that it’s putting its energy to good use in the long run.
Plus any browning leaves and broken branches can make the plant look unattractive so removing will keep your Fiddle Leaf Fig looking appealing year round
Removing Crowded Branches
If you’ve had your plant for a while, there’s a chance you will notice some overcrowding. Branches may have started to cross each other and the head of the tree might have become quite dense.
If you notice any over crowding or crossing branches, we recommend removing these. This is another way to help the health of the plant as overcrowding means that inner branches and leaves can’t get enough light or air. This will also help to keep any mould or pests at bay.
Pruning for Shape
The light that indoor plants receive can sometimes be a little uneven.
The usual habit of the Fiddle Leaf Fig is straight up but due to the differing light access to the plant. It may start growing sideways, larger on one side than the other or even drop some of its leaves.
If you do decide to prune for shape, start by thinking of the shape that you want your tree to be. Plan this out so you know where you need to start cutting first.
If you prefer the more “standard tree” shape then start by pruning away the lower leaves to reveal the stem underneath. Leave the foliage on top… etc
Prune to a Manageable Height
If you’ve had your tree for a while, there could be a chance that it has grown quite a lot. If you think it’s heading to be too big for the space it’s in then…
To help the plant heal from the trauma of pruning and to encourage plenty of new growth in its place you can give your plant a feed.
Your plant will also need plenty of light after it’s been pruned to allow lots of new growth.
Repotting your Fiddle Leaf Fig
Fiddle Leaf Figs are vigorous growers and we would recommend repotting every 1-2 years to keep it healthy and growing.
Choose a new pot that is approx 2-4 inches larger than the current one. Avoid choosing one much bigger than this as the plant can drown when next watered.
Repotting is best done in the springtime when the plant is at its strongest.
If you would like to repot your plant but keep it at the size it is then you want to prune back the roots slightly before repotting back into the same pot.
Extra Care Tips
You may notice that the large leaves on your Fiddle Leaf Fig Tree collect dust over time. Make sure to wipe them over to remove the build up of dust to ensure the plant can get an efficient amount of sunlight.
Fiddle Leaf Fig Trees tend to lean in the direction of the light. Turning your plant regularly will ensure that it doesn’t start to become lopsided and grows in a nice upward direction.
Fiddle Leaf Fig Toxicity
Fiddle Leaf Fig Plants can be toxic to dogs and cats. If leaves are ingested it may cause mouth and stomach irritation and vomiting.
Check out our range of Pet Friendly Plants for more information.
Fiddle Leaf Fig Pests and Problems
Fiddle Leaf Figs can be susceptible to a few common pests but a healthy plant shouldn’t run into any problems. If you do notice any aphids, mites or white fly on your plant simply wipe away with a rag and mild mixture of soapy water.