Skip to Content

How Often to Water Fiddle Leaf Fig Tree | Answered + Ficus Lyrata Care

Fiddle Leaf Fig WEB

This article may contain affiliate / compensated links. For full information, please see our disclaimer here.

The Ficus Lyrata may not be the easiest plant to care for, but one of the main factors in its development is water. Be sure to water your Fiddle Leaf Fig once a week or every 10 days.

After getting your first Fiddle Leaf Fig, you’ll scour the internet for information on how to care for it. Some sources will persuade you that it’s finicky and others will reinforce how simple it is.

The Fiddle leaf Fig also called the Ficus Lyrata is a well-known house plant. As long as you’re mindful of how to care for a Fiddle Leaf Fig Tree and give it the right conditions, your plant can grow up to 40 feet high.

In this post, you’ll learn all about Fiddle Leaf Fig watering care. You’ll pick up on how to notice if your plant is underwatered or overwatered, as well as how to mitigate any issues you may face. 

When to Water Fiddle Leaf Fig

Looking after any plant is a journey of trial and error. They’ll look wonderful in a nursery with constant attention. But once you bring them home, your plant may show subtle signs of distress.

These changes are normal (regardless of how frustrating), and there are loads of things you can do to minimize the stress on your new plant.

You can keep track of how your plant does in its new environment. This means to leave it alone once you place them in their forever home. Water every 10 days or once a week and observe how your plant acclimates.

Fiddle Leaf Fig trees are native to the tropical rainforest of Western Africa. That means it loves water, humidity, and a decent amount of light every day.

While all of these factors are important,caring for Fiddle Leaf Fig appropriately is largely based on watering your Fiddle Leaf Fig.

If you find that it’s quite hot and in the middle of summer, your plant will need more water to support its active growing stage.

During winter and colder seasons, the tree will become dormant and therefore requires less watering. You’ll need to change how often to water a Fiddle Leaf Fig depending on these elements.

Checking Your Plant’s Soil

Always check the soil before watering. In order to give your tree the right care, you’ll have to pay attention. Because how often to water Fiddle Leaf Fig Trees is dependent on their environment.

To check the soil, you could dip your finger about 2 inches deep. If your finger is dry and there’s no soil stuck to it, this indicates dryness and your plant needs a good watering.

If you’re noticing some moisture and there are soil particles stuck to your finger, you may want to wait a few days before checking the soil again.

If you’re completely uncertain, rather err on the side of caution and leave your plant to dry out between watering. This ensures that there are no opportunities for root rot and other overwatering-related issues.

Remember, a Fiddle Leaf Fig needs moist soil but not too damp and soggy. If you’re not keen on getting your fingers dirty, you can always invest in a soil meter that checks the light, moisture, and heat.

Morning vs Evening Watering

Some plant parents prefer to water their plants in the morning (especially during summer). This allows the plant time to soak up the liquid before being exposed to the heat of the day.

Although, whether or not you’re watering your plant in the evening or early morning is personal preference, you may want to check out what we have to say on watering plants at night.

fiddle leaf fig water

How to Water Fiddle Leaf Fig

Now that you’ve figured out a little bit more about when – you should also know that there are a few methods on how to properly water your plant.

Some people have a heavy hand and are always overwatering, while others are a bit stingy in that regard. Both of these are common errors because we would like to ensure that our Fiddle Leaf Figs are healthy and happy.

It’s important to note that any of these watering methods has its own pros and cons. It’s best to try all of these methods at least once, to get a feel for what works best with you and your plant.

1.   Bottom Watering

Bottom watering is exactly what it sounds like. It’s watering the plant from the bottom. This is usually done by placing a bowl of water somewhere safe and placing your pot in the water.

Depending on the size of your plant, some people prefer to water the tray it is standing in and others prefer getting a self-watering planter to alleviate any stress from moving the plant around.

Allow your Fiddle Leaf Fig to sit in the water for as long as necessary. You’ll notice that the top parts of the soil will become damp, or water will start to pool above the top layer of soil.

Once you feel the roots have received enough water, you can drain the bottom of the tray or move your plant so that excess water can drip out the bottom.

This method takes a bit longer but is specifically useful for those of us who tend to underwater. It’s also particularly helpful to ensure that the roots have received enough water.

Pro tip: Allow the plant to stand for a little while to drain any excess water as it may result in root rot if left in too much water for too long.

2.   Top Watering

Top watering is the tried and tested method that is used most around the world. The issue with top watering is that your plant’s roots may not receive the right amount of water.

The rule of thumb is to water the plant every few days by adding water slowly. You may take your finger and ruffle the top layer so that the topsoil soaks up the water a bit better.

Pour a little bit of water equally around the top and allow it to settle, keep repeating this process until you see some water flowing out at the bottom. This should indicate that your pot has been adequately moistened.

Remember to check the soil before top watering.

3.   Showering your Fiddle Leaf Fig

Most Fiddle Leaf Figs also pick up dust on their leaves. This usually causes unhealthy-looking leaves and sometimes encourages scale.

Wiping off the leaves with a damp cloth or plant cleaning wipes is a handy trick to keep dust at bay. You could also shower your plant. If your pot is on the smaller side, take your plant out to the shower, or leave it out in the rain.

This ensures that your plant is receiving enough water and cleans off any bugs and pests that may have made a home on the stem and leaves of your plant.

Some people prefer to leave their plants out for an entire day to ensure that any excess water has dripped away. After an hour in the rain (or a few minutes in the shower), move your plant to a bright part of your home to dry.

This gives your Fiddle Leaf Fig a chance to “air” out and will prevent any fungal or bacterial infections in the soil. 

Fiddle Leaf Fig Care Tips

Try to fertilize your fiddle leaf fig before deep watering, this is best for getting the fertilizer to move about the soil and wash out any excess salts and chlorine.

Too much fertilizer can cause chemical burns and can make Fiddle Leaf Fig tree care a battle. If you’re uncertain, use a liquid fertilizer and mix it with water. 


Troubleshooting Fiddle Leaf Fig Problems

In reality, beautiful Fiddle Leaf Fig Trees take more than just understanding how to take care of plants. It’s also vital that you begin to learn the signs of a tree in distress.

This is usually shown through the colors of the leaves, the spacing between leaves, weird smells, and bugs.

Is My Fiddle Leaf Fig Overwatered?

Fiddle Leaf Figs can be easy to care for but need a lot of attention. Caring for your plant is all about trial and error.

If your fiddle leaf fig is showing signs of brown, blotchy spots on the leaves, you may want to consider reducing its water. These signs are usually indicative of overwatering.

If you’re still seeing signs of unhappiness, you may want to consider repotting your plant. By replacing the soil with new, healthy soil, you’re allowing the plant to start fresh.

Is My Fiddle Leaf Fig Underwatered?

If your Fiddle Leaf Fig has curled up leaves, it’s starting to look crispy and brown, this is an indication that your plant is underwatered.

Give it a deep watering and monitor the changes. Having an underwatered plant is much easier to save than an overwatered plant. Your Fiddle Leaf Fig will survive a few days of drought. 

Final Notes on Fiddle Leaf Fig Watering

As previously mentioned, figuring out how to care for Fiddle Leaf Fig is all about trial and error.

You’ll have to develop a slightly love-hate relationship with this plant to truly understand what it may need from time to time.

While they are finicky, they’re a dream to have in your home once you’ve figured them out. Ensure that you’ve got a regular watering schedule and have given your Fiddle Leaf Fig enough nutrients and a well-draining soil mix.

Water your plant once a week or every 10 days (after checking the soil’s moisture levels). Keep in mind that it will need more water during its active phase, and you can slow down on watering during the winter months when the plant is dormant.

Pay special attention to the leaves of your fiddle leaf fig and you’ll soon become a master at figuring out just what your plant needs to thrive.