The first question we get asked is how do I look after my fiddle leaf fig? So below we have provided some information, tips and trouble shooting to help keep your fiddle happy and healthy.
About your Fiddle Leaf Fig
The fiddle leaf fig is an evergreen tree, originally from tropical Africa! It is a low maintenance plant, requiring watering once a week only and grows best in a well lit position. The growing season is in Spring and Summer and given the right conditions your fiddle wth thrive all year.
Water – don’t get too water happy! Fiddle leafs need watering approximately once a week only. Water enough that it drains out the bottom of the pot, and wait until the top 2 inches of soil are dry before watering again.
Important! If you have placed your fiddle into another pot, ensure you remove it when watering, the water needs to drain away or the roots will sit in the water which WILL cause root rot. If you repot, ensure the new pot has a drainage hole.
Clean the leaves - give your fiddle leaf leaves a gentle clean every now and then to help the plant absorb light and to avoid potential infection. A gentle wipe with a cloth and water is enough. This will also keep those big green leaves looking nice and glossy.
Soil – good quality, fast draining potting soil. Good quality soil is essential, go for the higher quality over cheaper price.
Fertiliser – feed with a liquid fertilizer throughout the growing season, spring and summer. Don't over do it, once a month is enough. A slow releasing fertiliser can also be used by mixing into the soil.
Light - your fiddle leaf requires lots of indirect light. This means it needs to be in a well lit space, but does not like too much direct sunlight hitting the plant (especially hot afternoon sun). Your fiddle will also grow towards the light, so make sure you rotate it every so often to keep it growing straight.
Pruning - you can prune your fiddle leaf to encourage branching and bushiness. If you want your fig to look more like a tree, prune from the top to encourage branching out. The best time to prune your plant is in the spring time. If you find some browning leaves you can gently remove these, note they won't grow back in the same spot, new growth is generally from the top.
If your fiddle is looking unhappy
Root rot - can be a common issue with the fiddle leaf fig, developing when the plant's soil is constantly wet, this is why it is important to not overwater. The leaves may turn brown to black and curl up, eventually falling off. Root rot is best treated by withholding water until the soil is able to dry fully.
Mealy bugs - are a common indoor plant pest. Check your plant for little scaley, white bugs, they can be difficult to spot so check carefully! To treat remove straight away with a cloth and spray the plant with an organic pest oil. You can also spray or wipe leaves with neem oil to help prevent bugs.
Temperature - the fiddle leaf prefers a warm temperature with a bit of humidity. However, be careful not to place your plant near a heater or air conditioner, it won't like the draught.
Winter – If you live in Melbourne where it is quite cold in winter, your fiddle leaf fig growth will appear to slow or be dormant. This is ok! The fiddle will resume growing more rapidly during Spring and Summer. Remember not to leave your plant outside during the winter nights.