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A Growing Fiddle Leaf Fig?

This guy right here? He’s a fighter. I’ve actually never had a fiddle leaf fig survive in my care. Isn’t that dreadful? I shared one of my sad fiddle leaf sagas (a different fiddle leaf) a few years ago and unfortunately, that one didn’t make it. Of the four fiddle leaf figs I’ve had over the years, none are still with me.

Except…THIS GUY.

A Growing Fiddle Leaf Fig?

He had a bit of a rough transition to our new house (I left him unattended for several weeks outside while we were moving in the heat of the summer and many of his leaves turned brown and crunchy). But after a few months of getting him settled into a new home, he was looking pretty good.

But my, how he’s grown. In fact, that’s why I’m sharing about him today. I need more fiddle leaf advice! This time not because my fiddle leaf is withering, but because I have a GROWING FIDDLE LEAF and I have no idea what to do next!

A Growing Fiddle Leaf Fig?

He’s growing so much that his arms (?) trunks? are bending over from the weight of his ginormous leaves. Some of the new leaves are over 16 inches across, they are BEAUTIFUL! But the size of his leaves and the span of his arms (he has four) have me wondering if there’s something I should be doing for him that I’m not (besides moving my lamp and furniture to give him more room, ha).

A Growing Fiddle Leaf Fig?

Because I’ve always been afraid of upsetting him, I’ve never pruned him or repotted. I water him once a week and he likes that. Well, he hasn’t said anything to me out loud (bless) but he is alive, green and lovely so I’m assuming that he must be content with whatever situation he’s got going on here, at least for the moment.

Maybe it’s expected that his arms will continue to get super long like that? He’s not really very tall, just growing wider in all directions :).

A Growing Fiddle Leaf Fig?

A Growing Fiddle Leaf Fig?

He isn’t in a very big pot and I can see roots (they’ve always looked like that, I think). I could repot or put him in a slightly bigger pot with more soil? Or, do you think I shouldn’t risk it and as long as he’s happy just leave him be?

A Growing Fiddle Leaf Fig?

Should I take this opportunity with his robust health and growth to repot and prune? What would happen if I prune? Wouldn’t his arms grow just as long again?

The new leaves are so pretty I hate to cut it all back to the older not as pretty leaves only to (hopefully) start over again. What if he goes into shock? What if he gets mad or…dare I say it, what if I kill him?


If anyone knows what to do with a growing fiddle leaf, I’d be grateful for the advice. :)

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  1. Beth

    I have been seeing this plant pop up everywhere lately! My sister the plant afgicianado of the family has one! They are soooo finicky. Not too hot, not too cold, lots of sunlight but not too much. Too much or too little water is a danger and they positively hate drafts. Maybe yours was just in the wrong spot last time. As far as repotting, it shouldn’t be that different from with other plants….slightly larger pot and plenty of potting soil. I think the biggest shock comes from placing right back in too much sun after. Give it a day or so. I would not recommend repotting anythung in winter months.

  2. Mandy

    I’m in the same it as you! Please do a follow up post on your responses!

    • Mandy

      *same boat as you, lol!

  3. Gail

    I’ve never had a fiddle leaf specifically but I *do* know plants. I’d recommend going to the best plant store in your area to get the correct type of soil (probably regular potting soil, but maybe need heavier or lighter soil; they will know) and unless it’s a rare type plant which likes a crowded pot, I would re-pot it. The usual recommendation is to put into a pot 1/2 again as big as the current pot, be sure to untangle the roots so it doesn’t get root bound. If for some reason they are impossible to tease apart then you should get a sharp knife like a boxcutter and cut some of them to open them up. Good luck. Needing to re-pot is a good problem to have ! :)

  4. Heidi

    I love your fiddle leaf fig, and what a great problem to have. He is growing and strong! Definitely put the plant in a larger pot with some new soil. If the roots are wrapped tightly at the bottom or around the edges, simply untangle them a bit and loosen them up. You can even cut some of them if necessary. It will actually make the plant happier and able to grow stronger. The leaves may be weighted with their size. You can cut off any awkward leaves. And always remember to water less than more. Too much water will rot the roots, and then there is no turning back. I love plants and find working with them is such a healing, healthy project. Wishing you and your fig all the best!

  5. Carli Taufer

    I repotted mine once it hit the ceiling. It’s about 9′ tall now and had to move to a different room that has an extra foot and it’s hitting the ceiling there too. Since I adopted it from someone moving to Colorado “Albert” has grown a foot and now consistently gets about 5-8 new leaves each month. He did super well being repotted and didn’t lose a single leaf. I too would like to know how to prune and repot the top of my fiddle because it’s Just too tall.
    For you to get more height the long side beaches need to be cut back so energy can go to the main stalk. Also get yourself some “super thrive” plant vitamins. It’s probably what makes my plants grow like they are on steroids. Otherwise I think all of your conditions are perfect. Oh and also don’t forget to rotate your plant once a week too. ??

    • Ann

      Yes, I would definitely prune this tree. There is too much to write here, but I would be glad to guide you through pruning a fiddle leaf fig. I have done it several times. I started out with three fiddle leaf figs and pruned and propogated the two biggest ones to get three other new ones. So now I have six thriving plants! They are all doing great. Please feel free to call me at 541-999-0120, and I will fill you in on all the details and show you pictures. I have a propagate growing new roots right now. I could FaceTime with you to show you!

      Ann Lacouture ( When I pruned and propagated my first fiddle leaf, I wrote about it on my blog. Anyway….

      • Robin

        Such a kind and generous offer. Confirmation that there is beauty and good in the world. 😊

  6. Lynne L Daly

    OMG, you actually got it to grow? I’m having the same issue of them always dying. I’m about over this plant! Have had tis type for years so much that it used to be $39.99 at Home Depot (as long as I can remember) and they got a clue this year and raised the price to $69.99. Now I don’t feel like I get my money’s worth out of it so quickly and start over. Am curious, did you put the fiddle leaf figo ver the years in the exact same spot and all of a sudden this one has taken off? I’d love to know I still had a fighting chance with another fig…..

  7. Shari Schempp

    I am in the exact same boat! My fiddle leaf is growing like mad! I love it! But I’ve also been wondering if I should repot. I’ve been reading a lot about it lately, and everything I’ve read says that they like to be a little crowded, but not too crowded. So when you repot you should get a pot only a couple inches bigger than the one it’s in. I really think mine is ready for that step, but I’m scared to do it! What if my happy fiddle leaf gets sad? I guess it will be taking a leap of faith and praying I don’t kill her! Haha!! As far as pruning, I haven’t read anything that says they should be pruned, only that they can get really big, so make sure to give them lots of space. I think I would be too scared to try pruning. I’d love to hear what you end up doing, and how it goes. Good luck!

  8. Amy

    I haven’t had that type of fig, but I do have a degree in horticulture and other figs have responded well to pruning. If you decide to cut back you will ideally cut just beyond a spot where it branches, or at the very least just beyond a leaf (no bare stems sticking out). You will end up with a more compact and hopefully more upright plant. I would also plan to repot, but given their temperamental nature you might do that at a separate time (a few months in between to determine that it is still happy). When you repot, follow Gail’s directions to tease the roots out or cut a few. Having roots circlig the pot can eventually strangle it (!), but I suspect this type doesn’t apprecie too much disturbance.
    All at said, kudos to you for cultivating a thriving fiddle leaf fig! Lovely!

  9. Keri Vincent

    I have no advice but please keep us updated!!

  10. Susan Shipe

    I am new to the FLF world of growers BUT I did buy mine from a nursery. 1. They like smallish pots – no need to go 3 sizes larger; perhaps one size larger with some fresh potting soil BUT do not mess with that root ball! 2. FLF’s like to be on the dryish side. Let surface get semi-dry NOT crusty dry. I find once-a-week thorough watering is ideal. Thorough means: water until you see leakage into the drain tray then STOP. 3. Obviously, FLF is happy in the current lighting situation. 4. As far as pruning? Listen to the others!!! xo

  11. Sharon Warren

    Sounds like you don’t need advice on how to grow this beauty!
    I did get a tip from a person who goes to commercial businesses to care for their live plants (fun part time job). She said they only use distilled water to water the plants they service. The plants thrive and no chemicals are added to their limited growing medium. I’ve started doing that and no more brown tips or yellowing leaves on my indoor plants.
    Thought your readers might appreciate this tip.

  12. Jan

    I’ve had the same fiddle three for three years, and a smaller bush for about five and I’m so proud of them. I pull off old crunchy leaves that look dry or when they are really crowded. I trimmed the top because it became too tall for my ceiling and it was still happy… and even still grew taller. We’ve since loved so now I don’t have to trim it anymore and it’s big and happy. I loved reading all this advice. I’ve never repotted mine. That scares me!

  13. Joanne

    Hi Melissa
    The fiddle leaf is beautiful I will show my partner the pictures he is a master horticulturist (excuse me) lol let you no what he says. I am far from a expert believe me none of Charlie’s (the horticulturist) has rubbed off on me just saying I think you should keep on doing what your doing. But I will ask that expert haha

  14. Mary

    I have a FLF that I’ve managed to keep alive for the past 3 or 4 years. I also water him once a week, like you and some of your readers. I recently repotted him and he was fine with that, it was the first time repotting. I moved to a slightly bigger pot maybe 2 or 3 inches wider than what he was in before. He sits near an east facing window and seems to enjoy the amount of light he gets. In the winter I move him to a different window, because this is where our Christmas tree goes and he gets better light at the other window during the winter. I read that you should turn the tree a quarter turn once a week when you water. I’ve started doing this for the past 6 months and it’s definitely helping my tree to even out and the areas that had less leaves have grown more, so this worked well for my guy!
    I enjoyed reading all of the comments, good tips!

  15. Amy C Tausk

    I have a very similar fiddle leaf and the florist I bought it from actually came to my house and helped me prune it the first time as it was completely overtaking the room. I was so nervous, but it was no big deal and now I have done it a couple more times and it is still doing great.. The only thing I would caution is that when you make the cut, white sticky sap will come out at the end of the branch – it is kind of a mess to clean up if it drips on the floor so have a wet towel handy.

  16. Bernie

    I’ve killed more plants than I can count. Right now I’m working on my Mothers Day orchid.

  17. Victoria

    Your plant is beautiful. Don’t be afraid to re-pot it or prune it as this will only help it thrive even more! I have two of them…one is fairly small and the other one is nearing 5′ tall, so I decided last week to give it a new, larger pot since it was looking a bit crowded, just like yours. I am crossing my fingers but it is looking very happy! Make sure that you really work the soil into all the edges of the pot so as not to leave any areas where the roots can dry out. Then water thoroughly. I also use a solution of water and Tincture of Green Soap (I ordered it from Amazon) once a month or so to spray the leaves of my plant. This keeps them free of dust and any errant bugs and I’m loving the results! I just bought a spray bottle at the dollar store and use about 1T of soap and fill the rest with water since the soap is rather concentrated. Spray the tops and undersides of the leaves and wipe them with a soft cloth. Easy!

  18. Arjun Neil

    I guess u should report him in a 12″ pot now, without disturbing the roots, as for pruning if u r going to propogate another guy then I assume it isn’t necessary, but probably u could think of giving it some sort of support.

  19. Ann C

    I googled fiddle leaf and on site it says not to trim but to repot as it grows til it’s the size you want, then just scrape from the top dirt and replace with new potting soil annually. Hope this helps.

  20. Karen D

    Here is a great video on splitting the fiddle leaf that I may try when mine gets too big. It has grown about 18 ” in the last 6 months.

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