Fiddle Leaf Fig – Care Guide
In the wild, Ficus lyrata can grow as an epiphyte, meaning that they often can be found growing in the crowns of other trees where they send their roots down and may eventually strangle the host tree. They can also grow as a free standing tree to up to 15m tall and can grow often grow 60cm to 1m in a year!
The fiddle leaf fig is the king of the jungle when it come to indoor plants. Its impressive leaves with their thick-ridged venation make this fig an excellent specimen tree for any indoor display. If you make sure to follow the care guide below you will find the fiddle fig is actually quite a low maintenance plant and will thrive on neglect. Although the care guidelines are a little more stringent, the reward is a fast-growing and stunning plant that will be the envy of all!
Origin: Western Africa
Life Cycle: Evergreen Tree
Fiddle figs enjoy lots of bright, indirect light. Too much exposure to harsh direct rays will burn the leaves. You may find that the leaves gather dust which can block photosynthesis; simply wipe down the leaves with a moist cloth to remove the dust and also help to remove any pests.
Fiddles will lean towards the light, so be sure to rotate the plant regularly to keep it straight.
Once the top inch of soil is dry it is time to water. The easiest way to test this is dig your finger into the soil. It’s very important to take care with watering your fig and to follow the care instructions as they are particularly susceptible to root rot and may die if they are sitting in too much water. Do not use a self watering pot or keep a dish under this plant.
It is recommended that you mist the leaves occasionally to raise the humidity particular if you are living in an area with dryer air such as Melbourne. This will help the plant to remain lush and bushy.
Fertilise during the warmer seasons as this is when the plant is growing, but not in Winter. Apply a diluted liquid fertiliser to the soil once a month during Spring and Summer.
If kept indoors, this plant is unlikely to flower. It is highly recommended that they are kept indoors in the state of Victoria.
Small brown spots on the leaves may be caused by too much water settling on the leaves. The edges of the leaves may brown if the humidity is too low.
Common insect issues for fiddles are infestations of mealybugs and funguses.
Leaves may drop due to bad watering habits or if the plant is exposed to cold or hot drafts, so be careful the plants placement in relation to windows and air conditioners. They hate the cold! Heating and cooling a house will dry out the air so be sure to adapt your watering to suit and keep the leaves misted regularly.
You may be prompted to repot if the roots start to grow out the bottom of the pot. If you want to keep the plant in the same pot you can trim the roots by no more than 20% to help keep the root ball small and help slow down the trees growth if it is getting too large. Otherwise just repot into a pot that is at least 2 inches bigger using any well draining soil.
Ficus lyrata can be propagated using stem tip cuttings.