One of the most pressing questions for fiddle leaf fig owners is knowing when it’s time to repot their beloved plant. Fiddle leaf figs thrive on routine and stability, making any disruption a potential risk. However, there are situations where repotting is necessary for the well-being of your tree. Let’s explore when it’s best to repot and when you should leave your fiddle alone.
Signs That Indicate It’s Time to Repot
Your Tree has Outgrown Its Pot
If you notice the soil pulling away from the edges of the pot or roots popping out from the top or bottom, it’s a clear indication that your fiddle leaf fig needs a bigger pot. With its growth, the tree becomes healthier, and repotting won’t cause any significant harm, only temporary droopiness or leaf drop.
Pets can sometimes mistake your fiddle’s pot for a bathroom. In these cases, the chemicals in their urine pose a serious risk to the roots. It’s best to repot immediately, rinsing as much of the contaminated soil from the root ball as possible. To prevent future incidents, consider covering the soil surface with pebbles to deter pets.
Bacterial infections can quickly spread and potentially kill your plant. If you notice spotting or signs of a bacterial leaf spot, remove all affected leaves and place the tree in an area with excellent light. If the infection persists, repotting is a 50/50 chance that’s well worth taking.
Root rot is every fiddle leaf fig owner’s worst nightmare. However, it’s possible for the tree to recover without immediate repotting. If your pot has good drainage and you’ve simply overwatered, allowing the plant to dry out and providing adequate light can save it. Only repot if the spotting worsens despite treatment or if the pot has poor drainage.
When You First Bring it Home
When bringing a new fiddle leaf fig home, it’s generally better to leave it in the nursery pot for the first month. This allows the plant to adjust to its new environment without the added stress of repotting. However, closely monitor the moisture level of the soil, as some nursery pots may have extreme drainage. If the soil dries out too quickly or doesn’t drain properly, repotting is recommended.
If you notice fungus or mushrooms growing on the soil surface, gently remove them with a spoon. Sprinkle cinnamon around the soil, as it has natural antifungal properties. Ensure your plant receives enough light and avoid overwatering. Only consider repotting if brown spots appear or if the fungus quickly reappears.
Situations That Don’t Require Repotting
There are certain issues that don’t call for repotting but can be resolved through other means. For yellowing leaves, dryness, sunburn, insect invasions, drooping leaves, or edema, there are specific articles available to help address these concerns.
By considering these guidelines, you can ensure the long-term health of your fiddle leaf fig. Remember to make informed decisions based on the specific needs of your plant. If you do decide to repot, make sure to follow the proper techniques to ensure a smooth transition.
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Image source: Ames Farm Center