Fiddle leaf figs (Ficus lyrata) have gained immense popularity as indoor plants due to their striking appearance. These beautiful trees with their broad, violin-shaped leaves are an elegant addition to any home or office space. However, one of the crucial factors contributing to the health and growth of your fiddle leaf fig is the choice of the right pot size. Finding the appropriate pot size ensures adequate space for root growth, stability, and a healthy environment for your plant to thrive.
Let’s delve into the details of choosing the perfect pot size for your fiddle leaf fig.
Understanding the Needs of Your Fiddle Leaf Fig plant
Many times when you purchase your Fiddle leaf fig plant it is already root bound in its nursery pot. The plants roots are growing out all over the place and you may be wondering what the heck do you do with this plant. Before selecting a pot, it’s essential to understand the requirements of your fiddle leaf fig.
They can grow into very large plants, both in height and width, so they require ample space for their roots to expand. They also prefer well-draining soil to prevent waterlogged roots, which can lead to root rot.
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3 Signs Your Fiddle Leaf Fig Needs a New Pot
- Root Bound: If you notice the roots growing out of the bottom of the pot or circling the pot’s bottom, it’s a sign that the plant has outgrown its current pot.
- Stunted Growth: Your fiddle leaf fig may stop growing or display slow growth due to limited space in the pot.
- Watering Issues: Difficulty in maintaining proper soil moisture can also indicate that the current pot is too small, causing the soil to dry out quickly.
Choosing the Right Pot Size for your Fiddle Leaf Fig
The right pot size for your fiddle leaf fig depends on various factors:
- Current Size of the Plant: If your fiddle leaf fig is small, you can start with a smaller pot. As it grows, you’ll need to transition to larger pots gradually.
- Room for Growth: Select a pot that allows at least 2-4 inches of space around the root ball to accommodate growth.
- Drainage Holes: Ensure the pot has adequate drainage holes to prevent waterlogging, promoting healthy root conditions.
- Material of the Pot: Terra cotta and ceramic pots are porous and allow better air circulation for the roots. Plastic and metal pots can retain more moisture and heat which isn’t a bad thing depending on your environment.
- Stability: A pot with a wider base can provide stability for taller fiddle leaf figs, preventing tipping. Fig trees can get heavy as they grow larger so a wide base may be key to keeping your fig from tipping over.
The best soil mix for a fiddle leaf fig tree is one that is well-draining and has a slightly acidic pH.
Here are some of the key components of a good soil mix for fiddle leaf figs:
- Coco coir: Coco coir is a sustainable alternative to peat moss, which is becoming increasingly scarce. It is made from the husk of coconuts and is a good source of organic matter.
- Perlite: Perlite is a lightweight, porous material that helps to improve drainage and aeration. It also helps to prevent the soil from becoming compacted.
- Pine bark: Pine bark is a good source of organic matter and helps to improve drainage and aeration. It also helps to retain moisture, which is important for fiddle leaf figs.
- Sand: Sand helps to improve drainage and aeration. However, it should be used in moderation, as too much sand can make the soil too dry.
Here is a recipe for a good soil mix for fiddle leaf figs:
- 2 parts coco coir
- 1 part perlite
- 1 part pine bark
- Small amount of sand
You can also find pre-mixed soil mixes specifically designed for fiddle leaf figs at most garden centers.
Here are some additional tips for choosing a soil mix for a fiddle leaf fig tree:
- pH: Fiddle leaf figs prefer a slightly acidic soil with a pH of 6.0 to 6.5. You can test your soil’s pH with a home soil testing kit.
- Drainage: The soil should be well-draining to prevent waterlogging, which can lead to root rot.
- Aeration: The soil should be aerated to allow air to reach the roots, which is essential for healthy growth.
How to Repot Your Fiddle Leaf Fig tree
When it’s time to repot your fiddle leaf fig:
- Choose the Right Timing: Spring is generally the best time for repotting when the plant is entering its growing phase.
- Gently Remove the Plant: Carefully remove the plant from its existing pot, taking care not to damage the roots.
- Select a New Pot: Choose a pot that is 2-3 inches larger than the current one to avoid overpotting.
- Use Quality Soil: Opt for well-draining soil mix specifically designed for indoor plants.
- Transplant Carefully: Place the fiddle leaf fig in the new pot, ensuring the top of the root ball aligns with the top of the new soil level. Fill in the sides with fresh soil and water thoroughly. Give enough water until it drains from the hole in the bottom.
Choosing the right pot size is crucial for the health and growth of your fiddle leaf fig. It’s a good idea to regularly monitor your plant’s growth, observing signs of distress will guide you on when it’s time to repot. Providing adequate space for root development, good drainage, and stability will contribute significantly to the overall well-being of your fiddle leaf fig.
Remember, each fiddle leaf fig is unique, so it’s essential to observe and cater to its specific needs. By selecting an appropriate pot size and maintaining a healthy environment, you can ensure your fiddle leaf fig thrives and becomes a stunning centerpiece in your indoor space.
The size of pot you need for a fiddle leaf fig tree will depend on the size of the tree. As a general rule of thumb, you should choose a bigger pot that is 2-3 inches larger in diameter than the current pot. This will give the roots enough room to grow without becoming pot-bound. If the pot is too large, the roots will have too much space to grow, and they may start to rot.
Here is a helpful table of pot sizes for fiddle leaf fig trees of different sizes:
|Tree Size||Pot Diameter|
|Small (less than 2 feet tall)||6-8 inches|
|Medium (2-4 feet tall)||10-12 inches|
|Large (over 4 feet tall)||14-16 inches|
It is also important to choose a pot that has proper drainage holes in the bottom. This will allow excess water to drain out of the pot, preventing the roots from becoming waterlogged. It’s also a good idea to place a saucer under the pot to catch any water that drains out.
Tips for choosing a decorative pot for a fiddle leaf fig tree:
- Choose a pot that is made from a breathable material, such as terracotta or ceramic.
- Make sure the pot is heavy enough to support the tree.
The best pots for a fiddle leaf fig tree is one that is made from a breathable material, such as terracotta or ceramic, has drainage holes in the bottom, and is slightly larger than the root ball of your plant. Here is a more detailed explanation of why these materials are beneficial:
- Terracotta: Terracotta is a natural clay material that allows air and water to pass through it, which is beneficial for fiddle leaf fig trees because it helps to prevent root rot. Terracotta pots are also relatively inexpensive and easy to find.
- Ceramic: Ceramic pots are also breathable and allow air and water to pass through them, making them a good choice for fiddle leaf fig trees. Ceramic pots are also available in a variety of styles and colors, so you can find one that matches your décor.
- Drainage holes: Drainage holes are essential for preventing waterlogging, which can lead to root rot. Make sure the pot you choose has drainage holes in the bottom so that excess water can drain out.
- Size: The pot should be slightly larger than the root ball of your plant, with about an inch or two of space on all sides. This will give the roots room to grow without becoming pot-bound.
Here are some additional tips for choosing the best planters for a fiddle leaf fig tree:
- Weight: The pot should be heavy enough to support the tree. A lightweight pot may tip over if the tree becomes top-heavy.
- Material: Avoid using plastic pots, as they do not allow air and water to pass through them as well as terracotta or ceramic pots. If plastic is all that you can get make sure your soil is well draining.
- Style: Choose a pot that complements your décor. There are many different styles of pots available, so you can find one that matches your taste.
How to Grow a Fiddle leaf fig houseplant
This comprehensive guide will provide you with the essential knowledge and techniques to successfully cultivate a fiddle leaf fig tree as a flourishing houseplant.
Choosing the Ideal Location
Fiddle leaf fig trees prefer bright light, which mimics their natural environment under the canopy of taller trees. A south-facing window or a location near a well-lit area is ideal. However, avoid direct sunlight, as it can scorch the delicate leaves. If natural light is limited, consider supplementing with grow lights to ensure your plant receives adequate illumination.
Optimizing the Potting Mix and Pot Selection
Select or create your own well-draining potting mix. Check out our recipe below.
- 2 parts coco coir
- 1 part perlite
- 1 part pine bark
- Small amount of sand
Watering and Maintaining Proper Humidity
Fiddle leaf figs require consistent moisture but are sensitive to overwatering. Too much water and you risk causing root rot to your plant. Allow the top inch of soil to dry out between watering. During the warmer months, you may need to water more frequently, while less frequent watering is sufficient during cooler months. Misting the leaves regularly or placing the pot on a pebble tray filled with water can help maintain humidity levels, which are essential for fiddle leaf figs’ well-being. However placing a humidifier nearby is the best way to provide consistent humidity around your plant.
Fertilizing and Pruning for Optimal Growth
During the active growing season, typically from spring to early fall, fertilize your fiddle leaf fig tree every 2-4 weeks using a balanced liquid fertilizer diluted to half-strength. Avoid overfertilizing, as this can damage the roots. Pruning is essential for maintaining shape and encouraging new growth. Use sharp, sterilized pruning shears to remove any dead, diseased, or overgrown branches.
Common Issues and Solutions
Fiddle leaf figs are generally resilient plants, but they can sometimes experience problems due to improper care or environmental factors.
Here are some common issues and their respective solutions:
- Leaf Drop: Leaf drop can be caused by stress from changes in environment, overwatering, or underwatering. Allow your plant to adjust to new surroundings, ensure proper watering practices, and maintain humidity levels.
- Brown Spots: Brown spots on the leaves can indicate fungal or bacterial infections. Improve air circulation around the plant and avoid splashing water on the leaves during watering.
- Pests: Keep an eye out for common pests such as spider mites, mealybugs, and scale insects. If detected, isolate the affected plant and treat it with insecticidal soap or neem oil.
If you are able to provide proper and consistent care for your fiddle leaf fig it will reward you with amazing growth and beauty in you home!