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Sometimes, nailing down the best fertilizer for your fiddle leaf fig plant can be tough, especially with so many great products available either online or in local garden shops. It's not unusual for new plant owners to experience a bit of analysis paralysis after reading multiple reviews and application procedures of numerous fertilizers. So, which fertilizers are the best? And better yet, what fertilizer ratio do fiddle leaf figs require? We've done a bit of digging to find the answers to these questions for you.
Fiddle leaf fig trees thrive best when grown with fertilizers with an NPK (Nitrogen-Phosphorous-Potassium) ratio of 3-1-2. However, they can also grow really well using all-purpose fertilizer treatments.
Here are some of the best fertilizers to use on fiddle leaf fig trees:
- Easy Peasy Fiddle Leaf Fig Fertilizer
- All-purpose Indoor Plant Food by Aquatic Arts Fertilizer
- Fiddle Leaf Fig Tree Plant Food for Ficus Lyrata
- Fiddle Leaf Fig Tree Fertilizer Treatment by Aquatic Arts
- Botanicare NCNS17GGAL CNS17 Grow Plant Nutrient
- Fiddle Leaf Fig Slow-Release Fertilizer by Perfect Plants
- EarthPods Ficus + Fiddle Leaf Fig Tree Premium Fertilizer
Read on to learn more about these fertilizers and the best nutrient ratios and regimens for fiddle leaf figs.
Fiddle Leaf Fig Nutrient Requirements
Soil alone won't provide your fig plant with all of the nutrients needed to maintain its growth. Even incredibly rich soil will need to have nutrients supplemented, as they will be depleted as the plant grows.
Similar to most other indoor household plants, fiddle leaf figs need nitrogen to help produce new leaves and maintain their foliage. When they don't receive proper nitrogen supplementation, their growth will be stunted, and the plant will eventually weaken.
Fig plants also need phosphorus to stimulate their roots' growth, maintain vitality, and fight plant diseases. They use phosphorus to transfer energy throughout their roots, branches, and foliage--and it plays a key role in its metabolic activities. To effectively absorb phosphorus, the plant's soil will need to have a pH between 6.5 to 6.8.
Potassium helps the plant maintain its strength and gives it the ability to ward off diseases. It's also responsible for regulating and maintaining metabolic activities.
Types of Houseplant Fertilizers
There are a few factors to consider before determining which fertilizer type may work best for your fiddle leaf fig plant. One important factor is the fertilization method that you want to use for your plant. Each method has its own advantages and disadvantages. There are three main types of fertilizers used for indoor plants: slow-release fertilizers, granular plant fertilizers, and liquid plant fertilizers.
Granular fertilizer is ideal when you are re-potting your fig plant. This fertilizer works by releasing nutrients every time you water the plant, which is very beneficial, as it allows for them to be released slowly. One of the biggest setbacks with this type of fertilizer is that it can be challenging to control the fertilization strength (which is the biggest setback with slow-release fertilizers in general).
This type of fertilizer typically comes in capsules or small pods and slowly releases nutrients into the plant's soil. The biggest advantage of this type of fertilizer is that you don't need to set any reminders to fertilize the plant, as it will keep it fertilized continuously. Slow-release fertilizers work best when fig plants are in smaller pots.
Liquid fertilizers are the easiest to use and control. To apply them, you simply need to dilute the fertilizer with water, add it to your pouring container, and apply it to your fig plant whenever it's due for a feeding. This type of fertilizer is great in winter months when plants are more dormant, as you can lessen the amount of fertilizer that the plant receives simply by not applying it (unlike slow-release and fertilizers). However, the biggest disadvantage to this would be that you will need to set reminders to feed the plant on schedule. So if you're someone who is out of town frequently or who tends to forget to feed your plant, this may not be an ideal option.
The Best Fertilizers For Your Fiddle Leaf Fig Plant
1. Easy Peasy Fiddle Leaf Fig Fertilizer
Easy Peasy's fiddle leaf fig fertilizer is specially formulated for the needs of beloved ficus plants. The formula will help your plant develop a strong root system, dark green leaves, and healthy stems. The formula is very safe for your plant, ensuring that it won't burn it.
All you need to do is apply 1/2 teaspoon of the liquid plant food to 2 cups of water, doing this at least once a week. The formula has a 6-2-4 ratio.
2. All-purpose Indoor Plant Food by Aquatic Arts
Aquatic's all-purpose plant food is another great option if your fig plant needs repair or if you simply are looking for easy-to-use plant fertilizer. This formula works to stop wilting, yellowing, or browning; it can reverse the overwatering or underwatering symptoms. Its application involves adding a single teaspoon to every two cups of rain or spring water, pouring in your plant's soil, and you're all set.
3. Fiddle Leaf Fig Tree Plant Food for Ficus Lyrata
The Fiddle Leaf Fig Pant Food by Ficus works well to strengthen your fig plant's cell walls and change the pH of its soil so that it's alkaline. The liquid solution contains a nice mix of super-charging ingredients to encourage fast and strong plant growth. This fertilizer is organic, which means that it will be gentle on your plant's leaves and roots (i.e., it won't burn them). If your plant has been dropping leaves or is recovering from plant disease, this fertilizer can help bring it back to life.
4. Fiddle Leaf Fig Tree Fertilizer Treatment by Aquatic Arts
Here is another well-suited liquid fertilizer for your fig plant. It's also made by Aquatic Arts and is specially formulated for fiddle leaf fig trees. This gentle fertilizer can get your plant the nutrients it needs as it promotes a strong root system and encourages foliage growth. And you can apply it each time you water your plants without worrying about plant burn from harsh chemicals--it simply doesn't contain any. It works especially well to help revive your plant if it is suffering from root rot or has leaves that contain brown spots.
5. Botanicare NCNS17GGAL CNS17 Grow Plant Nutrient
The CNS17 fertilizer is one of the best options to use if your fiddle leaf fig plant is in a bad state. The fertilizer is a professional strength solution that contains the nutrients that your plant needs to recover and mineral ions to correct its overall nutrient balance. This high-yielding fertilizer gives your plant everything it needs to bloom, grow, and thrive.
It also contains optimal NPK ratios and does a wonderful job of promoting root development. To apply, you'll need to dilute the solution in water and apply it to your plant during your watering session. Because of this particular fertilizer's strength, it's best to carefully read the application instructions so that you don't accidentally over-fertilize the plant and cause a chemical burn.
6. Fiddle Leaf Fig Slow-Release Fertilizer by Perfect Plants
Designed to promote an optimal and nutrient-dense environment for your plant, this fertilizer can give your fiddle leaf fig a slow and consistent stream of needed nutrients. It's also great for conditioning the plant's soil and helping it to absorb the nutrients. This fertilizer is gentle and should be applied every six months or so. Its application includes measuring the pellets according to the amount of soil that your plant has and tosses them on top of it. It also promotes a healthier trunk, making it more stable and resilient.
7. EarthPods Ficus + Fiddle Leaf Fig Tree Premium Fertilizer
A good match for fig plants that need a little "pick me up," these little pods also condition your soil as well as supply it with a mix of notable nutrients including fulvic and humic acids, natural growth hormones, and trace minerals. Its application couldn't be easier, as you only need to place one pod in the soil to fertilize the plant. This fertilizer can help your plant to produce stronger, greener, and larger leaves in addition to building a sturdier trunk.
What kind of soil does fiddle leaf fig need?
Fiddle leaf fig plants thrive when they are grown in well-aerated, fast-draining soils. The roots of these plants prefer fairly dry soil (or moist) instead of wet soil--which can actually hinder their health and growth. Using poor soil for your fiddle fig leaf can cause problems with the plant's roots aeration, and too strong soil mixes may burn your plant with chemicals or harmful salts.
Do fiddle leaf figs like to be root bound?
Yes, these plants are content with being root-bound and typically do not need to be re-potted often. They can grow just fine when they fit snugly in their pots.
Do fiddle leaf figs like peat moss?
Fiddle leaf figs require a well-draining potting mix, and peat moss alone does not qualify as such, unfortunately. So while you can definitely add peat moss to your plant's potting mix, using it as soil all by itself won't fair well for your fig plant.
Do fiddle leaf figs like coffee grounds?
Many indoor growers attest to the benefits of coffee grounds to encourage fiddle leaf fig plants' growth. So, it seems that there is truth to its benefit. However, it's always best to introduce new ingredients slowly to your plant, as not to shock it. Coffee grounds are especially acidic, so it may be a good idea to first work a small amount into your compost before adding them.
Wrapping Things Up
We hope this post has helped introduce you to the number of suitable fertilizer options for your fig plant.
Before you go, be sure to check out our other posts: