In this article, we discuss which is the best soil and fertilizers for fiddle leaf fig and why. We based our recommendations on scientific articles. You can find the list of references at the bottom of this article. To know more about fertilizer you can read the interview we had with Amanda about how to choose the right fertilizer.
Our favorite choices for soil and fertilizer both made specifically for fiddle leaf figs:
What is a Fiddle Leaf Fig?
Fiddle leaf fig (Ficus lyrate) is an evergreen, upright spreading, and irregular growing plant that produces 10 inches wide and 8-15 inches long thick, dull green, and fiddle-shaped attractive leaves.
Best Soil Potting Mix Ingredients for Fiddle leaf Figs – Ideal Recipe
A combination of silt, perlite, aged compost, and sphagnum peat moss makes an excellent potting mix for fiddle leaf fig tree.
The use of organic components and aged compost products offer excellent media properties for plant growth.
The addition of inorganic material such as perlite is also helpful to improve overall biomass production by positively impacting the solubility and bioavailability of essential nutrients.
Perlite improves the overall water holding capacity of the potting mix, and helps to provide a good physical environment, water, and aeration to the soil organisms. (Shah et al., 2006; Popescu, and Popescu 2015).
Best Soil Mix For Fiddle Leaf Fig
List of soil mixes for fiddle leaf fig
1. Fiddle Leaf Fig Plant Food
This soil mixture by Fiddle Leaf Fig Plant Food is composed of perlite, coco coir, aged bark, and IBI certified biochar. These organic materials are rich sources of macronutrients and micronutrients that prevent leaf dropping and nutritional deficiency symptoms. Moreover, organic materials are a steady source of nutrients that help plants to grow more extensively and vigorously.
Fiddle Leaf Fig Plant Food indoor potting mix is specifically made to maintain reasonable water drainage levels and retention, so the water stresses due to over-irrigation and under-irrigation can be avoided. This product is an ideal medium for all varieties of fiddle leaf fig and other house plants.
Note that the Fiddle Leaf Fig Plant Food mix should be appropriately packed after use to prevent any adversities. One bag contains 7.57 liters of the product, and this is enough to sustain the growth of plants on average-sized plots.
Users find the Fiddle Leaf Fig Plant Food to be beneficial in promoting the growth and development of figs and other house plants. Some reviewers pointed out that the amount of potting mix in the bag is not as presented in the product description.
2. Leaves And Soul Store
Leaves And Soul Store soil mix is composed of coarse sand, sawdust, pine bark, peat and therefore provides natural support and optimal fast-drainage properties.
Leaves And Soul Store potting mix provides good moisture retention which is great for fiddle leaf fig. This product is being offered in premium quality and is an excellent nutritional source for fig and other house plants.
Its application provides accelerated growth due to full release, bioavailability, and absorption. Growers can ensure good conditions for their fiddle leaf fig trees.
Leaves And Soul Store is offering superior quality, quantity, and a complete refund if growers are not satisfied with the quality. The packaging is durable, and there is no problem of product degradation if packed adequately after use.
The majority of the reviewers have found the Leaves And Soul Store mixture to be helpful for their figs as well as other houseplants. Some have reported the presence of biomaterials chips that seemed suspicious.
3. Perfect Plants Store
This house plant soil mix by Perfect Plants Store is composed of coconut coir, sand, perlite, pine bark, and enhanced food, so it is practically helpful to improve growth, development, and production by multiple times.
This potting soil by Perfect Plants Store is an all-purpose soil mix and can also support other house plants and indoor plants’ growth and development. It is an organic product and thereby dramatically improves the physical, biological, and chemical properties of the soil. This product helps provide optimal growth conditions for soil biodiversity that play an essential role in sustaining crop growth by providing nutrients, moisture regulation, and gas exchange.
Moreover, the provision of coconut coir is very helpful to retain the required amount of water. Perfect Plants Store mixture supports the drainage of excess moisture away from the plant roots and protects the growing plants from stresses, diseases, and root rotting. Furthermore, the lightweight formula promotes the free movement and growth of plant roots.
Users report the Perfect Plants Store as an excellent product for indoor plants, and they seem to find it helpful in improving the overall growth and development of their plants.
Some buyers mentioned that they found bugs in the bag, and they weren’t very happy about it. So, it is a good product for plant growth, but bugs’ presence is a concern you should keep in mind.
4. Rio Hamza Trading Dirt Co.
This soil mixture by Rio Hamza Trading Dirt Co. is made for the specific requirements of fiddle leaf fig plants.
It has the right blend of safe, high-quality, contaminant-free lime, horticultural charcoal, fir bark, perlite, and peat moss that soil for fiddle leaf fig requires.
The pH of this growing medium is maintained for fiddle leaf fig so that it cannot exert limiting factors for nutrient uptake and moisture absorption by the plants.
Rio Hamza soil mix is made by using organic materials that are virtually essential to promote the physical, chemical, and biological properties of soil for fiddle leaf fig.
Moreover, there is no use of synthetic chemicals and artificial fertilizers, so this product will not negatively affect soil biota and surroundings.
The organic materials this soil mix is made of preventing the soil from developing soil crust. So, there will be good rooting development and free drainage. This is essential to promote the root growth for healthy nutrient and water intakes and prevent root rotting and disease development.
Rio Hamza Trading Dirt Co. contains 2 gallons of soil potting, and growers can easily use it for average growth and repotting. The use of potting mix or potting soil is much better than fresh soil because it is specifically formulated according to the growing requirements of plants and helps to provide essential nutrients at different growth stages.
Reviewers believe it is a good product and helped them improve the fiddle leaf fig. However, its high price is a significant concern as it is a purely organic product and takes time to improve soil health and site conditions.
Leaf Fig Tree Fertilization
Fertilization is an important approach to accelerate the growth, and production of fiddle leaf fig and growers can apply both organic and inorganic fertilizers for this purpose.
Younger fiddle leaf fig plants must be fertilized before the emergence of leaves, and older plants three times a year (Hernandez et al., 1994).
Fertilization will help your plant stay healthy and significantly boosts the immunity against various diseases, insect pest attacks, and various biotic, and abiotic stresses.
Slow-release fertilizers are more helpful for figs, and therefore the addition of effective humus and stable humus is essentially important to provide a slow but constant supply of required nutrients (Hassan et al., 2019).
Best Fertilizers For Fiddle Leaf Figs
List of fertilizers for indoor fiddle leaf fig
1. Perfect plants store fertilizer
Perfect plants store fertilizer is an excellent fertilizer for your fiddle leaf fig and it will help it reach its full potential. It’s a high-quality and safe indoor plant food. It contains all essential nutrients that will motivate a strong rooting system, and greener and stronger foliage. This fertilizer contains nutrients in liquid form, so their solubility and bioavailability are not a significant concern.
One bottle of the Perfect plants store fertilizer is more helpful than the granular and slow-release fertilizers and offers promising results. Optimized and ongoing use is beneficial to provide sturdy growth and more resistance against biotic and abiotic stresses. One teaspoon of this fertilizer should be applied two times a week during the growing season to produce the best results.
The majority of users said the Perfect plants store fertilizer is an excellent product to improve soil fertility and plant growth. Most of them said the liquid formulation is easy to use. Note that you must ensure drainage holes in the planter to get maximum growth and prevent the risk of root rot.
2. Fiddle Leaf Fig Root Supplement by houseplant Resource Center
Houseplant’s Root Supplement fertilizer contains all essential nutrients and significantly promotes the growing dimensions and quality of the roots. Healthy roots lead to healthy vegetation and produce, and therefore its optimal application helps to get vigorous and greener plants.
One bottle is enough to fertilize numerous plants in the growing spaces. Growers will observe lush and healthy biomass production. Houseplant’s Root Supplement should be applied to plants every two to four weeks to avoid nutritional deficiencies and toxicities.
Reviewers seem to agree that this is an exceptional product to promote plant growth but they have recommended the use of pot with drainage to get the best results and a healthy fiddle leaf fig tree.
3. Easy Peasy Fiddle Leaf Fig Plant Food
Easy Peasy Fiddle Leaf Fig Plant Food contains phosphate, sulfur, soluble potash, ammoniacal nitrogen, and urea nitrogen. The application of this formulation helps to produce greener leaves and healthy plant growth. It has a longer shelf life and can be stored for double-time period than the other plant foods. It provides a specific ratio of nutrients for the plants and thus helps develop a denser and healthier rooting system.
½ teaspoon of Easy Peasy’s fertilizer should be mixed with two cups of good quality water and should be applied along with the irrigation water. It is beneficial for the areas where the environment is humid and hot. The application of this plant food enables plants to synthesize more food.
The majority of the reviewers have found this product as exceptional plant food during further growth and developmental stages of figs as well as other plants.
4. Aquatic art store liquid fertilizer
This liquid plant food by Aquatic art store is formulated explicitly with micronutrients and is greatly helpful for indoor plants and fig species. This fertilizer comes in a concentrated form and must be diluted with good quality water before applying to plants.
Usually, one bottle is enough to feed 1 fig plant for 6-12 months. Fig plants require a 3-1-2 NPK ratio, and this formulation provides the necessary nutrients for the plants, and therefore, plants can grow vigorously.
Moreover, Aquatic art store liquid fertilizer is a safe product that does not cause the burning of plant leaves and foliage. Provision of NPK is helpful to support good growth of fresh leaves, healing of root rot, and developing healthy plants.
Aquatic art store liquid fiddle leaf fig fertilizer is available in two different sizes, 8oz, and 16oz
The majority of the reviewers have reported that optimal and well-planned use of this plant food is greatly helpful to promote plant growth and development.
5. Perfect Plants store pallets
Perfect Plants store fiddle leaf fig pallets offer high-quality fertilization and contaminant-free slow nutrient releasing pellets. Usually, these pellets slowly release the nutrients in a period of six months. It provides an optimal rate of NPK in the ratio of 16-5-11. There is no need to provide other fertilizers separately, and thus the requirements for specific management are reduced.
A one-time application of Perfect Plants pallets is helpful to provide a steady release of nutrients for six months and helps plants grow and develop better. This application helps to produce a tough trunk, sturdy branches, healthy roots, plant stability, vibrant and glossy leaves.
Growers have reviewed the Perfect Plants pallets as a specially good fertilizer to save dying plants and to promote the lush growth of figs and other house plants.
6. Fiddle leaf tree store Slow-Release Pellets
This fertilizer by the Fiddle leaf tree store is a slow-release 8oz fertilizer that provides a 16-5-11 ratio of NPK fertilizers. The addition of ½ teaspoon of this product for every three inches of potting diameter is a recommended approach.
Fiddle leaf tree store Slow-Release Pellets should be precisely placed near the roots of the plants for effective results. Moreover, the plants should be thoroughly watered to get the best results.
An 8oz bag from the fiddle leaf tree store can be used for at least six months to provide continuous nutrients. An optimal and planned application of this product is required in order to grow healthy plants. It does not cause any adverse effects such as burning on plants’ foliage.
Most of the reviewers have reported that the fiddle leaf tree store is an ideal fertilizer to support maximum growth of fiddle leaf fig development and ficus plant healthy growth.
7. Eon Natural Plant Fertilizer
Eon Natural Plant fiddle leaf fig Fertilizer contains ammoniacal nitrogen, urea nitrogen, and nitrate nitrogen. One teaspoon of this product should be mixed with two cups of safe and sound quality water. The diluted form of this food can be applied with each irrigation.
Eon Natural Plant is an organic product that supplies all three macronutrients to the plants and supports root strengthening, shiny leaves, and overall plant vigor and health. A proper application of this product is essential to provide nutrients and protects plants from various biotic and abiotic stresses by improving the immunity system of plants.
Eon liquid plant food is organic and can also improve other indoor and house plants’ overall health. It is a gentle but powerful nutrient solution and will significantly improve soil’s physical, chemical, and biological properties. But adequate drainage must be ensured to get good results.
Most of the users are happy with this product and have shared positive reviews about its application’s beneficial aspects. However, some have shown their concerns about it being pricey.
8. Earth pods Organic plant food capsules
Earth pods Organic plant food capsules contain a specialized addition of humic acids, bacteria, and fungi that release and solubilize the soil’s nutrients around the rhizosphere. It also contains essential nutrients and minerals that significantly boost plant growth and development.
This houseplant soil blend by Earth pods has been approved by the leading scientific laboratories and it does not cause any side effects on soil quality and the surrounding environment.
Earth Pods fertilizing capsules can be easily stored at room temperature, and its empty container can be recycled. One packaging contains 100 earth pods, and these can be easily used for average-sized plots. These products are an exceptional source of nutrients and their optimal application is helpful to improve the growth of plants.
Users love this product for its safety profile and ready-to-use nature. Many people have highlighted its beneficial aspects for succulents, heavy bloomers, and other indoor plants.
Ideal Soil pH range for Fiddle Leaf Fig
Fiddle leaf fig grows well in the optimal pH range between 5.5-7, and growers must maintain pH around this limit to avoid any adverse effects on its growth and developmental processes.
The pH level of soil can be maintained by the proper addition of organic matter, compost, amendments, and specific strains of rhizospheric plant growth-promoting rhizobacteria (Moustafa 2020).
Fiddle Leaf Fig Soil Requirements
Ficus requires good soil aeration for optimal growth and development, therefore, the use of clayey soil is not a good option for its growth (Adeoluwa et al., 2015).
Do fiddle leaf figs like moist soil?
The growing medium must be well-drained as fiddle leaf fig cannot tolerate standing water conditions. Moreover, the soil must be fast-draining, well-aerated soils, rich in organic matter contents to improve the physical, chemical, and biological properties of soil. You may want to use a moisture meter for better decision-making.
What soil type is best for fiddle leaf fig?
Ficus needs well-drained, organically rich, and loamy soil properly amended with high-quality and safe compost. leaf fig tree survives well in loamy and well-managed soils by adding composting and potting mix.
Organically rich soils will support excellent growth and activities of soil biota that in return improves overall soil health and fertility. Thus, growers can enjoy lush, uniform, and beautiful growth.
Moreover, the use of poultry manure, sawdust, coconut fiber, cow dung, and press mud is also a good approach to maintain good soil fertility (Olivares-Sáenz et al., 2019).
Loamy soil is the best soil for the growth, development, and production of fiddle leaf fig as it allows good retention, and exchange of essential macronutrients, and micronutrients.
Moreover, it offers enough space for aeration, movement of water contents, and activities of soil biota.
Therefore, the plant’s roots can access enough nutrients and moisture contents to support their physiological, and biochemical processes.
Sandy soil causes immediate leaching of nutrients and water contents, and therefore not suitable for most plants. Whereas, clay soil does not offer good aeration and movement of water contents.
Therefore, gardeners should prefer loamy soil for the leaf fig tree.
However, if the availability of loamy is a limiting factor, gardeners can improve the quality and health status of clayey, and sandy soil by the addition of compost, peat soil, muck soil, microorganisms, and potting mix (Hassan et al., 2020).
Fiddle leaf fig Nutrients
Fiddle leaf fig requires a good mix of macronutrients and micronutrients that can support various physiological, and biochemical reactions in the soil.
Usually, fiddle leaf figs have equal, and good requirements of Nitrogen, Phosphorus, and Potassium, and therefore growers must use efficient NPK sources to provide these nutrients (Garrish et al., 2010).
Moreover, maintenance of optimal nitrogen to phosphorus ratio is extremely important for high-quality biomass production. Limited availability of Nitrogen, Phosphorus, Potassium, Calcium, and Magnesium causes reduced dry weight, leaf area, stem diameter, and stunted growth.
So, growers should properly manage the nutritional application to accelerate good growth (Mendoza-Castillo et al., 2019).
Roots of Fiddle leaf fig
Generally, the Ficus genus is a slow rooting plant, and rooting development can be observed within 1-2 months after planting.
1. How many inches of soil the leaf fig tree requires?
Ficus should be carefully planted in pots or containers having an excellent capacity to add at least 4-5 gallons of fast-draining soil. These containers should be filled to ½ or ¼ of their abilities to support good rooting. The soil must be capable of fast drainage to support the maximum growth and production of plants.
2. How to prevent root rot?
There is always a good association between over-irrigation and root rotting, so growers should carefully consider irrigation frequency and scheduling.
Moreover, the presence of soil-borne diseases, insects, salinity, and various other biotic and abiotic stresses can also be a significant reason for root rotting. So, growers should carefully manage all growing conditions to avoid root rotting (Bodah et al., 2017)
Are coffee grounds good for fiddle leaf fig?
Coffee grounds are rich sources of essential macronutrients and micronutrients and can be helpful in improving physical health, chemical reactions, and biological activities in the soil.
Moreover, coffee grounds’ organic nature helps sustain microbial activities, soil biodiversity, water retention, and drainage. Thus, their application helps support optimal plant growth without exerting any adverse effects on growing medium and surrounding conditions. (Iriondo-DeHond, A. 2019).
How do you encourage fiddle leaves to grow?
Proper care, management, right fertilization for provision of fresh nutrients, and irrigation scheduling are all important to maintain the overall growth and development of the fiddle plants.
But fiddle leaf fig leaves can also be stimulated for healthy leaf growth by notching, pinching, and pruning. Usually, plants grow themselves upward to get more sunlight and compete with other plants for sunlight and other resources. However, an acceleration of this process by human can greatly promote fiddle plants’ overall growth.
Pruning is the easiest and reliable way to improve the growth of fiddle fid tree leaves. It involves a specific process of cutting off the fiddle stem to the desired height. Pruning causes activation of dormant buds below the point of cutting and growth-promoting hormones. There is no requirement of adding extra nutrients to support these processes as it may cause nutritional toxicity in the plants and soil. (Wong, M. 2007).
The notching process does not cause the removal of any plant part but instead focuses on notches or small cuts on the trunk to stimulate new growth. This method requires special care and experience, and good results can only be observed with high accuracy and great care.
The pinching process has good similarity to pruning, but it does not require the use of cutters. This method is focused on removing certain stem sections by plucking the top bud or growing the bud from the plant. Pinching can be done by using the pointer finger and thumb for breaking the growing tip. These methods greatly help improve fiddle leaf growth, but growers should also be careful about other growth factors during the summer growth period and other seasonal growing periods (Widmer and Synder, 1957).
How to Feed Fiddle Leaf Figs in Containers?
Growers can fertilize the fiddle leaf figs by the application of organic, inorganic, and liquid fertilizers. Fertilizers can be applied separately, but their application and irrigation water are greatly recommended to get the best result.
The fertilization requirements are greatly dependent on the fertility status of growing media and prevailing environmental conditions. Usually, the nutrients are more soluble and bioavailable in the presence of proper moisture contents and hot climatic conditions. Moreover, nutrient release efficiency from various products and fertilizer sources is also added, so care should be taken before planning fertilizing scheduling (Soutiropolous et al., 2020)
What is the best pot for fiddle leaf fig?
Fiddle leaf fig requires optimal drainage and aeration (oxygen) for survival and maximum production. So, plastic pots are never recommended as they may cause suffocation and adverse effects on root morphology. However, the use of a clay planter or ceramic pots is an excellent approach to get the best results.
Do fiddle leaf figs like small pots?
Fiddle leaf figs should be grown in an average-sized planter. Pots too small will not be enough to support healthy and vigorous growth. Whereas, pots too big, will allow an increase in roots size and length, and a significant portion of energy will be utilized for root growth.
Therefore, growing fiddle leaf figs in a medium-size planter will be ideal. And smaller and larger containers are not recommended.
What brown spots mean on fiddle leaf figs?
One of the most common reasons for brown spots in ficus, in general, is root rotting due to over-irrigation. Irrigation stresses cause significant adverse effects on root structures and root morphology that, in turn, affect the overall growth potential of plants.
Rotting is resulting due to fungal infection and can be prevented by the provision of fast and ample drainage. The appearance of brown spots on ficus should be taken seriously, and preventive measures should be taken timely to avoid further development of the problem (Singh and Bhattacharya, 2020).
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