One of the most commonly grown in homes is the fiddle fig or ficus. It is an evergreen tree that can grow up to 10-15 feet tall. Fiddle figs are easy to care for and make a great addition to any home. But everything loses its value if these plants are not dark green as they should be. The following tips will help you keep your fiddle figs looking their best. But first, let us dive into the cause of this problem.
What Is Fiddle Fig Plant?
Also known as Ficus Lyrata, the fiddle leaf fig is a moderate to fast grower with typical heights between 6 and 10 feet. Rarely will it exceed 12 feet indoors, making it an excellent choice for restricted spaces. This highly popular indoor tree features large, profoundly veined, violin-shaped, glossy leaves that grow upright.
The fiddle-leaf fig should be placed in a pot on the floor to grow to at least 6 feet. (Most indoor plants only reach 10 feet tall.) It grows quickly and can be potted at any time of year.
Fiddle Leaf Fig Plant leaves are usually deep green but can be found in light shades to dark green. They have a long and slender shape with deeply veined surfaces. The plant is native to Western Africa and grows in lowland rainforests. It is a member of the Mulberry family (Moraceae), including plants such as the breadfruit and Jackfruit tree.
Causes And Solutions To Fix Yellowing In Fiddle Fig
One of the most common problems encountered while growing fiddle figs is the yellowing of their leaves. While a certain amount of yellowing is natural and expected, especially as the plant matures, too much yellowing can signify something is wrong. There are several potential causes of yellow leaves on a fiddle fig, including:
1. Nutrient Deficiency
Nutrient deficiency is one of the most common reasons for yellow leaves on a fiddle fig. Fiddle figs are heavy feeders and need to be fertilized regularly (about once a month) to ensure they get all the nutrients they need.
If you notice your plant’s leaves turning yellow, check to see if it is time to fertilize. A lack of iron can also cause yellowing leaves, so be sure to use a fertilizer containing iron if your plant shows signs of an iron deficiency.
Too much water can also cause yellow leaves on a fiddle fig. Fiddle figs like to have moist soil, but they do not want to sit in water. Be sure to check your pot’s drainage and only water your plant when the top inch or so of soil is dry.
If you think your plant is being overwatered, allow the soil to dry out completely and then reduce the amount of water you give it each time you water.
3. Inadequate Sunlight
Fiddle figs need bright, indirect sunlight to thrive. If your plant is not getting enough light, the leaves may turn yellow. Move your plant to a brighter spot and ensure it is not in direct sunlight, which can scorch the leaves.
4. Pest Infestation
Pests can also cause yellow leaves on a fiddle fig. Common pests that attack fiddle figs include aphids, mealybugs, scale, and spider mites. If you notice these pests on your plant, you must treat them with an appropriate pesticide or insecticide.
5. Soil Issues
The soil your fiddle fig is growing can also affect the plant’s health. Fiddle figs need well-draining, nutrient-rich soil to thrive. If the soil in your pot is too dense or does not drain well, it can cause yellow leaves.
Be sure to use a high-quality potting mix and ensure the pot has adequate drainage holes. To improve drainage, you may also need to add some perlite or sand to the mix.
6. Temperature Stress
Fiddle figs prefer warm temperatures and will begin to experience stress if the temperature drops below 60 degrees Fahrenheit. If the leaves of your plant are yellowing, it could be a sign that it is too cold. Move your plant to a warmer spot and ensure it is not in a drafty area.
7. Plant Stress
Moving a fiddle fig can also cause yellow leaves as the plant adjusts to its new environment. If you have recently moved your plant, give it time to adjust before fertilizing or taking any other action. Once it has acclimated to its new location, the leaves should return to their normal color.
While not as common as some other causes, yellowing leaves can also be a sign of disease. Fiddle figs are susceptible to fungal diseases such as black spots and powdery mildew. If you notice any unusual spots or discoloration on the leaves, check for signs of disease and treat accordingly.
9. Lack Of Humidity
Fiddle figs like humid conditions and will often suffer in dry climates. If the leaves of your plant are yellowing, it could be a sign that the air is too dry. Try using a humidifier or placing your plant on a pebble tray to increase the humidity around it.
10. Improper Pruning
Pruning a fiddle fig incorrectly can also cause yellow leaves. Fiddle figs should only be pruned in the late winter or early spring. Pruning at any other time of year can shock the plant. If you need to prune your plant, be sure to do so at the proper time of year and use sharp, clean shears to avoid damaging the plant.
11. Too Much Fertilizer
Fertilizing too often or using too much fertilizer can also cause yellow leaves. Be sure to follow the directions on the fertilizer package and only apply it as often as recommended.
How To Tell If Your Fiddle Leaf Fig Tree Is Healthy?
There are several key ways to determine if your fiddle leaf fig tree is healthy.
- Take a look at the leaves. Healthy leaves are large, glossy, and deep green. If the leaves are small, dull, or yellow, it could signify a problem.
- Check the stem of the plant. A healthy stem is firm and straight. If the stem is weak or spindly, it could signify a problem.
- Check the roots. Healthy roots are white or light-colored and have a fibrous texture. If the roots are dark-colored or mushy, it could signify a problem.
- If you notice brown spots on your fiddle leaf fig leaves, it could be a sign of drought stress, nutrient deficiency, or disease. If the brown spots are large and irregularly shaped, they may be caused by a nutrient deficiency. Be sure to fertilize your plant regularly and provide it with adequate nutrition.
- Check for any falling leaves. If you notice your plant leaves falling off, it could signify stress. Ensure the plant receives enough water and light, and the temperature is not too cold or hot.
- A final way to tell if your fiddle leaf fig tree is healthy is its growth rate. A healthy fiddle-leaf fig tree will grow rapidly, adding new leaves and branches yearly. If the plant is not growing as rapidly as it should, it could be a sign of a problem. Make sure the plant is receiving adequate water, nutrition, and light.
Soil Acidity and Yellow Fiddle Leaf Fig Leaves
The ideal soil pH for a fiddle leaf fig tree is 6.0-7.0, which is slightly acidic. If the soil pH is too high or too low, it can cause problems for the plant. You can test the soil pH with a simple home testing kit. These kits are available at most hardware stores or online.
Follow the instructions on the package to test the soil pH. Fiddle Fig owners commonly use coffee grounds, sulfur, or peat moss to lower the soil pH.
Home plants only look good if they are in perfect condition. By taking care of them, you ensure they stay alive and healthy for as long as possible. Fiddle leaf figs are no different. They need the perfect conditions to thrive; if something is off, it will show in their leaves.
If you notice your fiddle leaf fig’s leaves turning yellow, it could be a sign of a problem. Be sure to check for the common causes of yellow leaves and take steps to correct the problem. With proper care, your fiddle leaf fig will be healthy and happy for years!
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Hi! I’m Sophia, and I love plants – especially an expert in growing house plants. I stay in Chicago, United States of America, and through my blog and social media platforms, provide tips and tricks on how to grow healthy, vibrant plants indoors. Check out more here.