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Need help reviving Fiddle Leaf!

9 years ago


I am a first time houseplant owner and recently picked up a fiddle leaf tree a few days ago. It is looking pretty run down and I thought I would be able to revive it, which I’m starting to think is going to be a large undertaking. After reading some different posts I have to basic info of suggested watering, light, and kind of soil but still have questions. As you can see from the attached pictures the tree is multi stem, leaning to the side, with a lot of crispy brown patches on the leaves. I have read that this could be to root rot/ over watering or too much salt intake?

I have read :

So I wanted to make sure that I’m caring for this correctly. I am thinking of flushing it out and potting up with a 3-9-6 fertilizer, since it is March I will wait till June-July to fully repot and cut the roots. I live in CA, so I mainly have had my tree inside for now (it’s only been 2 Days since purchase), but it should warm up in a few days so I can put it outside for some fresh air.

1. Should I water with tap or is it better to use filtered?

2. As far as flushing: Do I just take it outside, take it out of the pot and rinse the soil then let it dry out for a while?

3. For potting up:

  • I have read that some people put a thin layer of pebbles at the bottom of the pot, (Or like listed- crushed up granite) or is it recommended to mix it with the fertilizer?
  • From the pictures attached, do you think that the roots are “root bound” (which I think means coming out the top of the soil)? Does this mean it needs a bigger pot?
  • What does root rot look like, and how would I know if it was rotted? Because of the brown crispy leaves, would it be okay to cut off a few inches of the bottom roots just as a precaution?

4. Should I cut off the browned, dead leafs? Or can I just cut off the portion that is dead on the leaf, or will that kill the whole leaf? I’ve also read about scraping the dried crispy stuff off the stems, is this bad?

5. There is 5 stems (or Trunks) that are being supported and tied together - How can I make them strong so they don’t have to be? Or will they always stay this way?

Sorry for all the questions, I tried to read a bunch of posts so I wasn’t asking the same things, but just need to clarify some things and really appreciate anyones input! Since I’m new to this, I’m not clear on some gardening terms so please simplify any answers for me : ) THANK YOU!

I made a link for my pictures - let me know if there is a problem seeing them.