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May 9, 2020 7:04 PM CST
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Hello, I've had this fiddle leaf fig for about 4 or 5 months now, and its been doing fairly well since I've had it. I've heard of the difficulty of caring for these but up until now I haven't had many issues. For a while I've been slowly noticing some browning and minor cuts/holes in the leaves and some brown spotting on the undersides, and over the past few months I've had 2 or 3 of the lower smaller leaves fall off just from minorly moving the tree overall. I was worried it might be suffering from root rot so I was hoping to take preventative measures before it got worse so I was considering repotting it into a terracotta pot of around the same size. Before I did however I noticed one of the trees actually started to grow new leaves, which was a bit of a mixed signal. I was considering waiting for the leaves to grow to full size before repotting but now i'm noticing one of the lower leaves is really starting to show signs of damage and I want to make sure i fix the problem before it gets out of hand.

It sits right next to the north-east facing window, I've been giving it about 2 cups of water once a week which has been keeping it happy so far. I was occasionally giving it some 10-4-4 liquid fertilizer (all I had available) around once a month but for april i finally got some 14-14-14 slow-release pellets I gave it instead. I do have a pretty minor fungus gnat problem but to my understanding they shouldn't be doing harm to the plant (Plus I have some pitcher plants as well that have been thriving off of them)

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Above side of the lower leaf that I'm concerned about

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Below side of lower leaf I'm concerned about

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Here you can see some of the brown spotting and cutting (especially on the lowest leaf in this image)

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This is the pot I've been using, just a cheap plastic pot I bought on a budget

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And heres the drainage holes I drilled into the pot, I'm worried it might not be enough

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The new leaves the tree has been growing, they got to this size pretty quickly but more recently i've noticed their growth has been slowing down

Any ideas on what could be the problem or what I should do to fix it? Its been fairly minor now but I for sure what to act sooner rather than later. From my research online I've been getting conflicting information about whether its root rot/ bacterial infection / a pest of some sort. The new leaves growing tell me it might be in a somewhat healthy spot, but the spotting and browning worry me. Not sure if the new leaves tell me that the plant is healthy enough to survive a repot or not, since I know repotting shock can be somewhat detrimental to plants that arent healthy.
Anyway, sorry for the long rambles, and thanks a lot for your time/ help!
May 10, 2020 9:04 AM CST
Name: Will Creed
Prof. plant consultant & educator
Your plant is fine. There are no pests or fungus issues. Overwatering has not been a problem. If anything you have probably been under watering just a bit. Some lower leaf discoloration and dieback is normal and inevitable. The reddish discoloration on the new leaves is also normal. They will become all green as they mature.

If possible move your plant directly in front of the window so it gets as much light as possible.

Always water your plant as soon as the top half-inch of soil feels dry to the touch and always give it enough water so that some drains through the drain holes in the bottom of the pot. It might be a good idea to widen them to be sure that the excess water can drain out.

There is no need to repot it now or in the foreseeable future. Because you have added tied released fertilizer, don't add any more fertilizer for another year. Lots of good light and water are all your plant requires.
Will Creed
Horticultural Help, NYC
Contact me directly at [email protected]
I now have a book available on indoor plant care
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