You recently bought or already have a fiddle leaf fig. What’s next?
The Ficus lyrata, commonly known as the Fiddle Leaf Fig, is featured on the covers and in images of numerous design journals. Its tall stature and large, graceful leaves add drama and height and unify entire rooms. Despite where you’ve seen Fiddle Leaf Figs in pictures, some individuals don’t aware that they need to be placed just in front of a window. They can be challenging to care for until the plant adjusts to your environment and until you figure out when to water them. Continue reading to discover how to keep your fiddle leaf fig alive and healthy for many years to come.
The best setting for Fiddle Leaf Figs is in front of a window that gets direct morning or afternoon light. The ideal window to choose has a primarily unobstructed eastern, western, or southern exposure. You don’t want the window to be shaded by nearby trees or buildings. If your Fiddle Leaf is positioned right in front of the window, a north facing exposure can also work if there is enough room and nothing blocking your view of the sky. You should gradually adapt your tree to being in several hours of direct sunshine if you plan to set it in front of a southern exposure. The leaves could burn and develop brown scorch scars if they receive too much direct sunshine too rapidly. Over the course of 1 to 2 weeks, gradually increase the amount of time it spends in front of a southern window.
The amount of light your Fiddle Leaf Fig need to thrive depends in part on its size. The amount of light a plant needs will increase with its size. For instance, a window would need to be much taller to accommodate a 7′ tall tree than it would a 4′ tall tree.
In general, your fiddle leaf fig will require more light to preserve its existing leaves and spur the growth of new ones the more leaves it has. In order to tell us that it isn’t getting enough light to support all of its leaves, a plant will respond when it isn’t getting enough light by losing lower and interior leaves.
It’s important to keep your plant in front of the window during the winter months when natural light isn’t as abundant while still making sure it doesn’t get any cold air from drafts that blow in. If your windows are drafty, try moving your Fiddle Leaf 2 to 3 feet away from the window to observe how it reacts. In most cases, keeping plants at this distance allows them to avoid any sporadic cold air blasts while yet receiving an equivalent quantity of light. For more advice on winter maintenance, keep reading.
How much sun is required for fiddle-leaf figs?
The fiddle-leaf fig will not withstand situations with both low light and high light, in contrast to other plants (looking at you, monsteras!). It must be placed in an area with lots of bright, indirect light. Furthermore, it requires a few hours of direct sunlight each day.
“Lighting is the first and most crucial factor you should take into account before purchasing a fiddle. Little did I know that by placing my fiddle in a room with a north-facing window when I first took it home, I was sort of setting myself up for failure “Greene explains. “Fiddle-leaf figs like lots of light, and they frequently need up to five hours of direct light each day,” says the author. It thrives “near to south- or west-facing windows, or directly in an east-facing window,” according to Greenery Unlimited, and nothing can be anything blocking that light (like a building or trees). Additionally, because it grows toward the sun, you must rotate it once a month.
In addition to these lighting requirements, you also need to gradually introduce sunshine; you cannot expose it to too much sunlight at once. Otherwise, the lovely green leaves of the fiddle-leaf fig can burn and get brown spots. On the other side, too little sunlight will cause its leaves to become brown or yellow, or even worse, fall off. It also hates being moved around a lot since it could lose its leaves. Most likely out of spite. Even if your plant sustains some battle wounds in the process, you’ll eventually find the best location for it, even if it takes some trial and error.
“Adding a grow lamp ($23) is one of the things you can do to supplement that light if you already have a fiddle-leaf fig but feel like it’s not getting enough,” advises Greene. They’re fantastic since you can automatically control how much light it receives each day, especially if they include a timer.
Which direction grows fiddle-leaf figs best?
The Fiddle-leaf Fig, or Ficus lyrata to us nursery people, is a houseplant whose appeal has grown recently. The large, waxy, violin-shaped leaves, tree-like form, and sculpture-like habit of this plant have made it a well-liked houseplant for indoor gardeners as well as a fashionable subject for design blogs and articles. The uninformed may find fiddle-leaf figs to be a little volatile despite the high acclaim. But it’s not as difficult as you may imagine to take care of them. Simply adhere to the recommendations given below, and you’ll be able to appreciate a Fiddle-leaf Fig’s beauty without the drawbacks.
Overwatering is among the serious errors that most Fiddle-leaf Fig owners make. Like many other members of the Ficus family, fiddle-leaf figs require some time to dry out in between waterings. You may notice leaf browning at the edges, a musty odor close to the base, and even leaf drop if the soil is persistently moist. To prevent this, water plants only when the top three to four inches of soil are dry. Water should also be allowed to completely drain through the pot to avoid oversaturation. Additionally, keep in mind that Fiddle-leaf Figs are indigenous to the forests of West Africa, so water with lukewarm water to help prevent shock.
Fiddle-leaf Figs favor intense, filtered light. The ideal window is one that faces east or north and has good exposure, but not direct sunshine. Daily brief exposure to direct sunlight is acceptable, but avoid the mid-afternoon sun at all costs. The midday sun’s harsh rays will be too strong for your fig and may scorch the leaves.
Warm temperatures, typically between 60 and 75 degrees during the day and no lower than 50 to 55 degrees at night, are ideal for fiddle-leaf fig growth. Maintain the temps as uniformly as you can. Rapid temperature changes can cause shock, which causes leaves to fall. Avoid placing your Fiddle-leaf Fig close to any vents for heating or cooling or windows that could be affected by a draft from the outside. Another suggestion is to lightly spray the leaves in the winter. During the winter, heating your home depletes necessary humidity. Your Fig will benefit from the additional moisture in the air that you can provide on occasion.
Unless you observe strong root development peaking from the bottom of the container, fiddle-leaf figs often don’t require repotting until the spring of every other year. This timetable can be followed until it becomes impossible to follow. After that, all that will be required of you is to replace the top layer of soil once a year. Make sure your Fiddle-leaf Fig is potted in a loose, well-draining, nutrient-rich soil to help with moisture difficulties. By doing this, water won’t collect in the soil and soak the roots excessively.
A Note About Pets
Unluckily, pet owners might want to stay away from having a fiddle-leaf fig in their house. Pets that have consumed any part of a fiddle-leaf fig plant may experience stomach upset and inflammation.
Fiddle-leaf Although growing figs can be difficult, with a little perseverance and good care, you can produce a lovely specimen that will complement any home’s decor.
Can a fiddle-leaf fig be planted in a bedroom?
Given how frequently it appears in home publications, television shows, and blogs, the fiddle leaf fig (Ficus lyrata) is one of the most popular houseplants right now. The appropriate lighting is crucial to keeping your plant healthy in a bedroom environment because its huge leaves are its focus point.
The gloomy understory of the jungle is ideal for fiddle leaf figs, but indirect light from an east-facing window also promotes their growth. To improve the humidity around the plant, place your fiddle leaf fig on a plate of stones with water in it. In conclusion, the fiddle leaf fig prefers everything in moderation, including temperature, water, and light. Your plant will suffer if there is an imbalance between these components.
Do fiddle-leaf figs thrive more indoors than outdoors?
If you reside in a sunny place or want to move your houseplant outside, fiddle-leaf fig plants can thrive there. It takes time to transition your indoor fiddle-leaf fig plant into an outside garden.
- The fiddle-leaf fig should first be moved into a new pot, and the soil should be refreshed.
- Start by leaving it out on the patio or porch during the day for a week. To get the plant used to outdoor conditions and avoid damaging it from the afternoon sun, bring it inside in the early evening.
- Finally, keep it away from wind and direct sunshine by positioning it in shaded places with bright, indirect light. The plant benefits from morning filtered light.
- Every two to three days, water the fiddle-leaf fig because of outside environmental variables.
How can I tell if the light reaching my fiddle leaf fig is adequate?
Measuring the space between the leaves on your fiddle leaf fig tree is another proven way to determine whether it needs more sunlight.
The leaves of a fiddle will grow more closely together than those of a fiddle that must reach for its solar energy.
Here is an illustration of a fiddle leaf fig that displayed these precise signs. Just two years ago, I gave my mother this beautiful plant:
As you can see, the leaves were able to remain near to one another without suffocating one another due to the abundance of sunlight offered by the greenhouse environment. It was flawless.
I sent it over to my mother without checking for a bright spot in her home. The greatest spot she could locate in her house was close to a window, although it received little natural light.
After a year, she was able to move the large plant outside for some summer heat and humidity, but as you can see, the branches had already started to spread:
This fiddle leaf fig tree had a terrific summer, but when winter arrived, it had to return indoors.
It is now as follows:
Watch for this lanky, “reaching” appearance and address it right away by moving your plant steadily closer to the sun.
Can fiddle leaf figs survive in the shade?
The light that most homes and apartments naturally provide—not too much, not too little, nothing too bright, nothing too dark—is what the fiddle-leaf fig needs to thrive. An east-facing window is suggested by Harnek Singh, a gardener at Wave Hill Public Garden in New York City. According to him, fiddle leaf figs require both direct sunlight and a lot of indirect light. “South or west-facing windows will receive too much afternoon sun.
So keep in mind that your fig requires adequate sunlight in your home just like the nourishing rays that come through the deep canopy of the jungle. Cacti and succulents that live in the desert should be placed in the south-facing window.
Singh also advises buying fiddle-leaf figs from reliable sellers to prevent encountering the opposite issue. He claims that many of these plants are frequently already declining as a result of spending too much time in the dark. Foliage that is flagging and leaves that are pale, spotted, or wan-looking are indicators of improper light exposure. If your plant displays these signs, try shifting it to a different location for a week or two.
Where should a fig tree be planted?
Fig trees are well-liked as fruiting crops because of their laid-back disposition and capacity to flourish with little maintenance from you, the homeowner. The fundamental tree maintenance listed below promotes greater growth and larger fruit production, even if the trees don’t mind being partially neglected.
A location in your yard that receives full sun to partial shade is required for fig trees. Fruit trees need as much sun as they can get in order to produce the most fruit; it is advised that they receive at least 7 to 8 hours of direct sunlight daily.
Less sunlight doesn’t affect the health of fig trees, but it does result in lower fruit production.
They are common trees in the South and Western states because they do well in regions with long, hot summers and moderate winters. They can be grown as container plants indoors or in a greenhouse in colder locations.
In USDA Hardiness Zones 8 to 11, fig trees are advised to be grown. If given the right protection, hardy cultivars can be cultivated outdoors in regions with colder climates and harsher winters. It is not recommended to leave plants outside all year in regions below Zone 8, instead growing them in containers that may be moved within during the winter.
Regardless of the soil’s nutrient or organic matter content, Ficus carica prefers well-draining conditions. Because sand is more common in the South and West than loams or clays, these soil types are more popular there.
Prior to planting, the soil needs to be loosened up if it is heavy or compacted. The best way to achieve this is to amend your with lots of organic matter, working it in to a depth of 18 to 24 inches, such as finished compost or well-rotted manure.
However, as long as the pH isn’t too low or too high, drainage is more crucial than soil pH.
Trees that have just been planted need to have frequent irrigation until their root systems are well-established. To keep the soil moist, spread a layer of mulch around the tree’s base.
Trees require less water after they have grown. During the active growing season, aim to feed the tree with 1 inch of water weekly, whether from rain or planned irrigation.
The nutrient requirements of fig trees are met by the soil’s organic matter, therefore they require little to no fertilizer and require little to no upkeep.
However, you may give your tree a boost by feeding it with a phosphorus- and potassium-rich fertilizer early in the growing season while following the product’s instructions. Avoid using nitrogen-rich fertilizers since they encourage the growth of lush, green foliage rather than fruit development.
If your tree appears a little scrawny, applying seaweed extract every two weeks throughout the active growing season can also be helpful.
Fig trees require less pruning than other fruit trees, which is one of the reasons why homeowners prefer them. Usually, they keep their appearance nice on their own with little help from you. However, some thoughtful yearly trimming will keep your tree at a moderate size, making fruit harvesting simpler.
To improve the overall health of the tree, remove any dead or diseased branches before the tree becomes dormant in the fall. You can thin your tree if it has too many fruits during the growth season to encourage fewer, but larger, tastier fruits the following year.
Plant one of the cold-hardy fig kinds if you live somewhere where the temperature can fall to 10 degrees Fahrenheit or below. You will still need to take precautions to shield your tree from the chilly winter weather even then.
Bring indoors trees planted in containers throughout the winter. Bring the tree indoors to a cool, dry spot after letting it drop all of its leaves outside. As you want the tree to fall dormant, many people choose an adjoining garage or basement because of the colder temperatures. It can be brought back outside if nighttime lows in the spring consistently rise above 35 degrees.
Ground-grown figs are effectively protected from the winter elements by simple insulation. Using chicken wire covered in burlap, create a cage around the tree’s trunk, then stuff it with straw or dried leaves. Do not wrap the tree trunk in plastic as this could lead to overheating on hot days.
Remove the cage and insulation as the springtime temperatures start to rise. Thoroughly clean the area around the tree to reduce the danger of illness or insect problems.