Ask a Question forum→Fiddle Leaf Fig Leaf Browning & Not Growing

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Los Angeles, California
PlantLovingMan
Jun 8, 2020 1:33 PM CST
Hi all!

We've had a Fiddle Leaf Fig for a couple years now and it hasn't really grown at all.
The plant still looks like it's in good shape, just no upward growth.
Also, we've noticed some browning and burning on the leaf edges.

Can anyone help me figure out what the browning/burning may be and how to fix it?
Also, what are some tips for helping it grow taller?
We moved it next to a west-facing window which I read on another website to do because they enjoy a lot of sunlight.

Thanks in advance!


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Name: Will Creed
NYC
Prof. plant consultant & educator
Image
WillC
Jun 9, 2020 9:26 AM CST
Ficus lyratas are slow growers that tend to go many months with no new growth followed by a spurt of new leaves. Yours is in a fairly large pot and that will also slow growth while it puts its energy into filling the pot with roots first. So you will have to be patient. The increased light will help.

How long ago did you repot it?

How do you decide when to water and how much do you give it?
Will Creed
Horticultural Help, NYC
www.HorticulturalHelp.com
Contact me directly at [email protected]
I now have a book available on indoor plant care
Los Angeles, California
PlantLovingMan
Jun 9, 2020 10:37 AM CST
Hi Will C!

Thank you so much for your speedy reply.
Funny, I attributed the slow growth to the pot being too SMALL, not too big.
I was thinking that perhaps the roots were constricted which kept the plant from growing.

We probably re-potted it well over a year ago I believe.

On average, we usually water it about once a week, sometimes we go a little longer. I try to make sure the soil is dry before watering to avoid overwatering.

Could the watering be contributing to the leaf browning/burning?

Thank You!
Name: Will Creed
NYC
Prof. plant consultant & educator
Image
WillC
Jun 9, 2020 2:48 PM CST
Thinking that larger pots will make a plant grow faster is a common misunderstanding about indoor plants.

Watering may be contributing to the leaf edge discoloration. I suggest that you remove all the soil you added to the top of the original rootball when you repotted. It is unnecessary and prevents you from properly assessing when the soil is dry enough to be watered. When the uppermost roots are just barely covered, probe the soil with your finger and water when the top half-inch of the remaining soil feels dry. Give it enough water so that the top half-inch of soil gets dry again in about a week.
Will Creed
Horticultural Help, NYC
www.HorticulturalHelp.com
Contact me directly at [email protected]
I now have a book available on indoor plant care
Los Angeles, California
PlantLovingMan
Jun 12, 2020 12:53 PM CST
Thank you, Will!
Great info.
I'm definitely one of those that believed a bigger pot would yield and bigger and taller plant.
I'm guessing that if I have too much soil at the top the issue may be over-watering?
Being that it may look like it's dry near the top, but deeper near the roots it's actually still moist?

I really appreciate your guidance wit this issue, thank you :)
Name: Will Creed
NYC
Prof. plant consultant & educator
Image
WillC
Jun 12, 2020 1:05 PM CST
The loose soil on the surface tends to dry out much sooner than the soil around the roots, so yes, it might mislead you into thinking the soil is drier than it actually is around the roots. That excess soil on top serves no purpose.
Will Creed
Horticultural Help, NYC
www.HorticulturalHelp.com
Contact me directly at [email protected]
I now have a book available on indoor plant care

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