How to care for your fiddle leaf fig

If you’ve ever been to my house, you know I’m a big plant lady. I love having fresh plants everywhere in my house. But the plant that really has my heart is the fiddle leaf fig (sorry to my other green little babies – momma DOES have a favorite!). I know they’re a little “trendy” right now (and might not be cool anymore) but I am personally still loving them. Fiddle leaf figs aren’t going anywhere anytime soon, at least in this house.

I remember when I got my very first fiddle leaf fig. We had just moved to New York and I was determined to make our house look like the page of Architectural Digest (although….I’m not sure my vision ever came to fruition). I scoured everywhere to find my first fig tree, and when I did I was over the moon. It was beautiful, and huge and DIED six months later.

I was devastated. Everyone said that they’re such “easy” plants to take care of and that ANYONE could keep a fig alive. Well apparently not everyone.

The next five years I continued to accumulate different fiddle leaf figs (all with different varying degrees of success) and learned a few little tips and tricks along the way on how to keep these gorgeous plants ALIVE and HAPPY.  And I’m sharing all of it here!

How to care for your fiddle leaf fig plant

  • Do NOT repot
    • Fiddle leaf figs like to be ‘contained”, which means they DO NOT like to be repotted.  I’ve had the most success with these green beauties when I’ve just left them in the container they came in.  Do NOT be tempted to repot your fig.
  • Water consistently
    • I water all my plants on the same day every week.  For me, it’s every Sunday.  And I water them thoroughly.  Since all my figs are still in their original containers, they have drainage holes (which is key).  You don’t want your fig (or any plant) to be sitting in stagnant water.  It will rot.  You can tell if you’ve overwatered your fig because it will get tiny little red dots on the leaves.  These little spots are essentially “bruises” from the cells bursting from taking in too much water.  Don’t worry, they’ll go away.  But it’s a sign you’re overwatering.
  • Keep the leaves clean
    • This is something that’s so easy to overlook, but the leaves of any plant are how they breathe.  And figs have pretty big leaves.  If they’re covered in dust, they don’t get enough oxygen.  I use a clean dry cloth to just simply wipe off the leaves whenever I water my fig.  Then about once I month, I give them all a more thorough cleaning.  You can use a little bit of coconut oil on your rag (which works great) or this leaf shine.  
  • Give them enough sunlight
    • Figs like sun, but not too much.  It’s a little tricky.  For the most part, everyone says that fiddle leaf figs love in-direct sun, but I’ve found that mine do the best by a window that gets a lot of afternoon light (even direct afternoon sun).  But, the key here is that I rotate them, A LOT.  I usually rotate my plants every time I water them.  Just a little turn.  It takes a second but makes a big difference so that each part of the plant is getting enough light and no leaves are burning.
  • Fertilize
    • Your plants need nutrients, just like us.  And they don’t get enough just from their potting soil.  So you need to fertilize them with fiddle leaf fig fertilizer like this.  You want to fertilize them at least once a month from March-October (they don’t need to be fertilized during the winter months).
  • Sing to them
    • Ok, so this one I’m totally kidding with.  But a little serious too.  Just pay attention to them.  You’ll know what your plant needs if you’re paying attention. See how it’s doing in the corner of the room, or with how much water you’re giving it, or how much/little you’re fertilizing it – and if you need to adjust – adjust.  Just pay attention.  

These little guys may take a little extra time and care, but they bring so much beauty to any space.  Good luck with your little green babies and happy planting!

 

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