Fiddle Leaf Ficus (Fig): Fiddle Leaf Ficus

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Fiddle Leaf Ficus (Fig)

By drdawg
April 27, 2016

There always seems to be a lot of interest in and questions asked me about growing Fiddle Leaf Ficus as a houseplant. Along with questions, there is also a lot of confusion as to exactly what sort of houseplant the Fiddle Leaf actually is.

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The Jersey Shore (Zone 7a)
jksjkc
Sep 2, 2016 9:19 AM CST
Hello, I bought my 9' Fiddle Leaf Fig back in February-March. I absolutely love her. She sits in my family room, southwest lighting, and so far she is thriving. I even have some new leaves on her. I think I was overwatering a bit as I lost a few leaves at the bottom (older leaves) so I'm in the midst of drying to dry her out a bit. The place where I purchased her here in NJ mentioned a quart of water a week, with some fertilizer during the growing season. Well I didn't listen and gave her half a gallon to a gallon because a quart barely went anywhere in this big pot and I lost some bottom leaves. How dry should I let her get? It's been 2.5 weeks since I gave her water.
So I have two questions....One, is how much water is good for a 9 footer? She is in a large pot, pebbles at the bottom, a hole with an overflow pan (which has never gotten wet). The nursery repotted her right before they delivered her to my home. I told them I had 10' ceilings and would love for her to grow taller.
Okay, on to my other question. Her leaves all pointed up when I got her. I see some online and in pictures with downward or straight leaves. What will help her leaves to come down?
I may already have the answer but I'm not sure. Some of her leaves have come down since I started to not overwater her. Blinking
I'm thinking about purchasing another for my sunroom which is very bright and faces south, with skylights. Could this be too much light for this tree?
Thanks in advance for your help.

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Name: Ken Ramsey
Starkville, MS (Zone 8a)
[url=www.tropicalplantsandmore.com]
Orchids Greenhouse Vegetable Grower Ferns Region: United States of America Hummingbirder
Composter Bromeliad Master Gardener: Mississippi Cat Lover Tropicals Plumerias
Image
drdawg
Sep 2, 2016 9:38 AM CST
Welcome! @jksjkc

I have grown fiddle leaf by the hundreds and in my experience, if you have well-draining soil, there is some air-movement, and the plant is getting bright light, it is practically impossible to over-water a plant this size. Others will disagree with that statement but that's been my experience over three decades of growing them. Personally, when someone tells you to water with such and such amount, I think that's simply ridiculous. You've never had water come out the drainage holes. Holy cow. I water until I see water coming out those holes. That's when I know I have watered enough. I believe you had some leaf-drop simply because the plant was recently up-potted and its also been stressed with a change of locations. Nothing more.

As far as the leaves go, your plant looks exactly as it should. Older leaves will "flatten-out" in their presentation but new leave, unless the branches hang down, will always begin their life growing upright. That's just their nature.

Here's my 25+ year old fiddle. If I had not constantly cut her back (twice each year) and/or air-layered her branches (three times each year), she would easily be around 30' tall. The first photo was taken 5 yrs. ago (outside) and the second was taken last winter (inside).

I am sending you a T-Mail.

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drdawg (Ken Ramsey) - Tropical Plants & More
[url=www.tropicalplantsandmore.com]www.tropicalplantsandmore.com[/url]
If God wanted me to touch my toes, he would have put them on my knees.
Name: Gita Veskimets
Baltimore or Nottingham MD-212 (Zone 7a)
Life is "mind over matter". If I d
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gitagal
Sep 3, 2016 6:31 AM CST
We still have some of the huge Fiddle-Leaf ficus at the HD.
They look so stately.... Something around $79....

Have not seen these in years. G.
Name: Ken Ramsey
Starkville, MS (Zone 8a)
[url=www.tropicalplantsandmore.com]
Orchids Greenhouse Vegetable Grower Ferns Region: United States of America Hummingbirder
Composter Bromeliad Master Gardener: Mississippi Cat Lover Tropicals Plumerias
Image
drdawg
Sep 3, 2016 6:36 PM CST
Thumbs up
drdawg (Ken Ramsey) - Tropical Plants & More
[url=www.tropicalplantsandmore.com]www.tropicalplantsandmore.com[/url]
If God wanted me to touch my toes, he would have put them on my knees.
The Jersey Shore (Zone 7a)
jksjkc
Sep 4, 2016 10:19 AM CST
Thank you very much for your quick reply. Those trees you have are simply beautiful.
I never thought the leaf drop could be from the repotting. That is definitely a good observation.
When the salesperson told me a quart I was in total disagreement so I went with a gallon. I will continue to find her right amount of water. I guess I lucked out without killing her. lol
Correct me if I'm wrong, you water your tree every week this way? Can I ask what part of the country you live in? It's generally humid on the Jersey shore here so the plants do not dry out too quickly.
With the air conditioner on all summer I was worried the soil wouldn't dry good enough.

I'm still considering one for my sunroom or perhaps my master bathroom. I assume the humid condition in a bathroom should make this tropical tree happy.
The Jersey Shore (Zone 7a)
jksjkc
Sep 4, 2016 10:21 AM CST
I see you live in Mississippi and my favorite flower in the world is the orchid which I read you are quite the expert on. I'll have to delve into that website as well. I can never get my orchid to reflower.
Name: Ken Ramsey
Starkville, MS (Zone 8a)
[url=www.tropicalplantsandmore.com]
Orchids Greenhouse Vegetable Grower Ferns Region: United States of America Hummingbirder
Composter Bromeliad Master Gardener: Mississippi Cat Lover Tropicals Plumerias
Image
drdawg
Sep 4, 2016 11:03 AM CST
Keep in mind that all my 1000+ tropical plants are outside, from around April 1 till November 1. They are all under trees (except the Plumeria, which take full sun). Even though the "mother" fiddle as well as her siblings and the seedlings are under these trees, getting some early morning or very late afternoon sun, they get watered along with everything else that's outside, and unless we get a good rain, I water practically every single day, with copious amounts of water. I assure you, NJ is no where near as humid as MS is. Sighing!

When the weather begins to get around 60 F (at night), I begin to bring the plants in. I'll begin with the more cold-sensitive plants, such as orchids, progressing to the more cold-hardy plants, such as the ficus, bromeliads, plumeria, and staghorn ferns. The move-in generally will be over a span of 2-4 weeks. When my fiddles are inside, the watering frequency will be reduced. I just look at the soil and if it looks dry, they get watered. There is no specific schedule for watering. I still water copiously, wanting water to flow out those drainage holes. Actually, for those fiddles inside the house over the fall and winter months, with central AC/heat, there will be little humidity for them, so I spray/mist their leaves every few days to help raise the humidity, at least for a short time. There also won't be the heat and won't be the air-movement that they'll get when outside. Thus their need for less frequent watering. They also will go semi-dormant, and won't need as much water because their growth will slow a bit.

If I had to choose a spot with more humidity or more bright light, I will always choose the bright light. Fiddle leaf ficus are trees in nature and thus, when inside, they flourish in bright light and sulk when there is low light.
drdawg (Ken Ramsey) - Tropical Plants & More
[url=www.tropicalplantsandmore.com]www.tropicalplantsandmore.com[/url]
If God wanted me to touch my toes, he would have put them on my knees.

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