Okayyyy let’s be honest. Fiddle leaf figs are definitely one of the most desirable and yet intimidating house plants out there. And no, I’m definitely not perfect and for sure lost my first FLF to a classic case of root rot. Yet somehow, after trying out different techniques of watering (1 cup of water a week did not work for me), sun exposure and general care I have successfully kept my tree alive for 3 years! The plant gods are definitely on my side with this Figgy, so I thought it would be helpful to share some tips and tricks for keeping a happy fiddle leaf fig in your home.
1. East or West facing window! We keep our FLF in our large east facing windows and away from any air vents. He’s right up close to the window and is LOVING IT. We used to have him about 8 feet away from the window and he was fine but didn’t have much growth there. The closer you can have your tree to direct sun light for at least a couple hours a day, the more leaves they will produce, the taller they will grow and the happier they will be!
2. Watering schedule - every 10 days, in the kitchen sink, drain out excess water. That’s it. Take your fig to your kitchen sink or bathtub, plug the drain so that the water can stay there and water thoroughly until the base is sitting in 2 inches of water. Let him sit there, kick back and drink up the water for 30-60 minutes (longer if the soil is really dry) and then remove the plug and let the water drain out of the sink. This is a crucial step; grab the entire pot and tilt it side to side to remove any excess water that is sitting in the bottom, do not skip this! I usually let him dry in the sink either overnight, or for an hour at least and then put him back in his decorative pot! I water every 10 days and it works well for my tree, but if your home is really dry you may need to water more often. Just be sure that the soil is nice and dry before you re-water and be consistent.
3. Wipe and mist the leaves. Figs love to be moist… moist… moist (did you cringe?). But for real, dust the leaves all the time and whenever you water the base, give the leaves a mist as well. Especially with our two puppies, the large leaves get really dusty and hairy really fast, so keep them clean and moist and your tree will thank you!
4. Don’t repot! I’ve had this Figgy for 3 years and he is still in the original pot from Shelmerdine Garden Centre. Figs prefer to be root bound and its way easier to move your fig around when he’s in the light plastic black pot! Sometimes the soil will wash away during waterings, so just top up the pot with some regular potting mix whenever the sides look a little empty.
5. A little plant food every now and then. I use this Schultz All Purpose Liquid Plant Food and just mix about 5 drops in my watering can and pour it over soil. I usually do this more often in the summer about once a month, but in the winter time every 2 months is enough.
6. Be patient! Be so patient with your fig. They are so temperamental that anytime you move your plant, they need time to adjust. Our tree did not produce any new leaves for a year and a half, but I kept being consistent with the watering schedule and finally 18 months later had some new growth. Even now, Figgy grew a cluster of 3 new leaves in December and then nothing until the end of April where he grew 5 new leaves. Sometimes these trees just go months without producing any leaves and its okay. Just be patient and consistent and your FLF will definitely love you back, it just takes time.
I hope these tips will help you take care of your fiddle leaf fig or help encourage you to get one of your own! They are quite magical trees and I am so thankful to care for one of these beauties!
Please comment below if you have any questions!!