How to Care for a Fiddle Leaf Fig Part 2
I think that one of the biggest questions across Instagram and other social media sites is how do you care for a fiddle leaf fig tree?
That’s a really good question! I have four fiddle leaf fig trees and they have all lived in different environments and I think that I can say I know quite well how to care for one now. I’m not going to call myself an expert, just someone who has worked through trial and error.
My first fiddle leaf fig tree I purchased about two years ago. It stayed inside and is still inside to this day. I finally found an excellent location for it where it has done fairly well. It sits atop one of my end tables in the living room and it receives fairly bright light which is from the wall that faces south. I usually water it once a week or every 10 days depending on what time of year it is. Each time I water it I give it about 1 cup of water. Once a month or so I will take it outside and spray it down with water and let it sit outside for a little while. It is about 2 feet tall.
One thing I have learned that you have to be very careful with is to make sure that you have not recently put on any mayonnaise or coconut oil or anything like that on the leaves because if it is outside, that oil will burn the leaves if the sun hits it. That goes for any time that it receives direct sunlight.
I have put two of my fiddle leaf figs outside in my yard, one of them in partial sunlight and one of them in direct sunlight. The one in partial sunlight is actually shaded for most of the day but it does receive some direct sun just little spots here and there. The ground in that area is also fairly moist because the sun doesn’t dry it out thoroughly. This tree thrives and really blooms a lot of leaves during spring time when it is around 85° here. The leaves get big and are soft at first and are a beautiful green color. Once they’ve grown to their full-size then they harden up.
The Fiddleleaf fig in direct sunlight has also bloomed new leaves, but because it’s in direct sunlight what happens is the sun doesn’t allow the leaves to fully grow and they harden prematurely. The leaves are smaller and more of a yellow-green on this tree now. The soil also does not stay damp, it gets fairly dried out.
Basically, the best environment for a Fiddleleaf fig is one like its native habitat. It needs a shaded, warm environment (85 degrees) with damp soil in order to thrive. A lot of people will say they can be kept indoors, but they will not do well indoors unless they are in a sunroom and are watered enough to keep the soil damp. After several months in a normal home environment, you will see your tree struggle. It’s likely that it will produce premature leaves or none at all.
Leaves will brown and drop due to over or under watering. I explained this in my previous post about how to care for Fiddles.
I recently decided to move all of my Fiddleleaf figs outdoors except for one. I didn’t want to watch anymore struggle to thrive.