Fiddle Leaf Fig Rescue

Fiddle Leaf Fig Deterioration and Rescue in Akron, Ohio

This Fiddle Leaf Fig was acquired in 2016, and slowly started to deteriorate.  By October 2016 the leaves were turning brown at the edges and by December.  After a number of attempts to adjust the watering, it became obvious that actually the plant needed more sunlight.  This is a common misconception with the Fiddle Leaf Fig.  Many people read ‘bright indirect sunlight’ and interpret that in the wrong way.  In most climates, next to a window is perfect.  Also there is so much focus on the internet on the perils of over watering that many people end up disregarding the importance of enough light.  This plant was successfully rescued from near death thanks to it’s owner who has been tracking it’s progress (and other plants) on her instagram @fleeting_interest.  We are grateful that she has shared her experience so hopefully other fiddle leaf fig owners don’t have to learn the same lessons the hard way!

Another story of a fiddle leaf fig with the same issue has been documented on our blog previously here.

Mid 2016

I read “medium light” on the care label and through this spot would be fine because it’s near a window, and there are other huge windows on the other side of the room.  I think a lot of the problem is that people are told that the medium light is sufficient, when really they need bright, filtered light.

Mid 2016: I can already see signs of distress in this photo, though I thought it was still healthy at the time.  She clearly needs water here.  I knew that fiddles are sensitive to over watering, so I can say that was never the issue.  If anything, she was too dry.

October 2016

When she started to drop her leaves, I thought the problem was lack of water.  That was a huge and nearly fatal mistake, because the problem was (obviously now in retrospect) lack of light.  The light in the house had decreased quite a bit, and the small two windows weren’t nearly enough.  This was when I first noticed a problem.  She was so neglected that I hadn’t checked on her in a week or two.  The leaves were turning brown especially on the ones which faced the corner, and so were getting the least light.

October 2016: The leaves showing browning on the edges.  Since the leaves were brown and crispy, and because I didn’t water her much, I assumed that was the issue and promptly over watered.  Yikes

December 2016

I moved her to what I thought was a bright spot, but again, she couldn’t see the sky.  This was far from sufficient light, especially since it was winter.  By this point most of the lower leaves had dropped off.

December 2016: Plant has been relocated to a brighter spot, however since then have realised that the spot still wasn’t bright enough

March 2016

The plant appeared to go dormant for most of winter, but it was placed near a much larger window and also a warm mist humidifier was placed nearby to ensure the conditions were ideal for the survival of the plant.  If you are interested in seeing if a humidifier could improve your plant’s life, you can buy a humidifier here.

28th February 2017: The plant now is right up against a large window with plenty of daylight.  She gets a few hours of morning sun and can see the sky all the time.
8th March 2017: First signs of a new leaf on the way
16th March 2017: Leaf is unfurling
16th March 2017: Fiddle leaf fig new leaf growth
26th March 2017: New leafs are much later and looking extremely healthy
4th April 2017: New leaf is growing very fast
4th April 2017: Fiddle leaf fig new leaves



If you want to try caring for your own fiddle leaf fig tree, they are available on Amazon in both small and larger.

See our other plant stories about fiddle leaf fig tree here and a propagation from a leaf cutting here, and please get in contact if you have any of your own plant growth stories or advice!


Click below for other stories that you might find interesting:





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