Great for filling out corners or adding lush greenery to your living areas, it’s hard to go wrong when purchasing a Fiddle Leaf Fig. Unfortunately, it can be quite easy to go wrong when caring for these tropical beauties. These plants are not fans of change and like their environments to remain stable. In this guide, we’ll cover everything you need to know about Fiddle Leaf Fig temperature and humidity tolerances indoors.
- Fiddle Leaf Fig Temperature and Humidity Tolerances – The Essentials
- Typical Temperature and Humidity Ranges Fiddle Leaf Figs Receive in Their Native Habitats
- Signs Your Fiddle Leaf Fig Is Exposed to the Wrong Temperature and Humidity
- Ideal Temperature and Humidity Considerations for Fiddle Leaf Figs
- How to Boost Humidity in Your Home
- Caring for Fiddle Leaf Figs in Spring and Summer
- Caring for Fiddle Leaf Figs Over Winter
- Fiddle Leaf Fig Temperature and Humidity Tolerances FAQs:
- Wrap Up
Fiddle Leaf Fig Temperature and Humidity Tolerances – The Essentials
Native to forests of Western Africa, Fiddle Leaf Figs prefer warm temperatures between 60F and 75F and high humidity above 50%. These conditions should remain as consistent as possible between seasons. Fiddle Leaf Figs don’t handle fluctuations well and will drop leaves in response to the stress.
Typical Temperature and Humidity Ranges Fiddle Leaf Figs Receive in Their Native Habitats
Ficus lyrata is native to the forests of Western Africa, near Cameroon and across to Sierra Leone. Like most houseplants, they reside in tropical and occasionally sub-tropical zones. Here, they frequently reach over 40 feet tall and have dense, lush foliage that forms a large forest understory.
These tropical areas are known for their warm temperatures and high humidity. The temperature rarely drops below 60F and if it does, it is only for a brief period.
Despite the images that Western African forests may conjure up, temperatures don’t go excessively high either, hovering around 85F at most.
Thanks to the density of the plants and frequent rainfall, humidity remains around 70% in drier seasons and closer to 80% and above in rainy seasons. As these levels are very high for indoor growth, humidity of 60% is usually sufficient indoors.
The deep root systems of these large trees reach the saturated soil below the forest floor, meaning fiddle leaf figs are quite picky about watering. They are often found in dappled sunlight under larger tree canopies, but are also known to grow in full sun areas in more temperate regions.
Signs Your Fiddle Leaf Fig Is Exposed to the Wrong Temperature and Humidity
Fiddle Leaf Figs offer all sorts of benefits but are known for being fussy about their environmental conditions. They do not appreciate fluctuations in their care or environment. That’s why maintaining the right temperature and humidity throughout the year is vital to ensuring a long-lasting and healthy plant. Freshly propagated fiddle leaf figs are particularly sensitive.
If temperatures dip below 50F and the plant is exposed to cold drafts, the leaves will start to turn brown and fall off the plant. This cold damage is irreparable and may kill the plant if it is cold enough to reach cell level.
High temperatures can also cause issues but are more manageable for the plant than lower temperatures due to the conditions in their native habitats.
When temperatures remain above 85F for long periods, the leaves will begin to dry out and wilt. Going into survival mode, the tree will stop growing in an attempt to conserve water and energy.
Along with temperature, low humidity (anything below 50%) is also dangerous. The lack of moisture dries out the plant’s leaves, leaving them brown at the edges.
This common problem in Fiddle Leaf Figs will continue to spread until the humidity is improved. The tips that turn brown will never turn green again.
Any dramatic changes in temperature and humidity will result in a problem all Fiddle Leaf Fig owners come across at some point – leaf drop. Just one day of extreme fluctuation will cause the plant to ditch its large and heavy leaves due to stress. Pruning can help here if you need to cut back any past-prime or decaying leaves on your fiddle leaf fig.
Ideal Temperature and Humidity Considerations for Fiddle Leaf Figs
Moderate and stable are the two keywords to keep in mind. Moderate temperature and humidity, similar to the conditions we enjoy indoors, and stability of these conditions will keep your Fiddle Leaf as happy as the day you bought it.
Indoors, aim for temperatures between 60F and 75F. Due to their warm native environments, they don’t mind higher temperatures outdoors. However, as high temperatures aren’t sustained for very long indoors, it’s better to stick to more moderate but more consistent temperatures to prevent environmental changes.
These temperatures should remain relatively consistent year-round. As they need to be close to windows due to their high light requirements, this is not an easy task, especially in winter.
That’s why it’s essential to choose the perfect spot in your home in terms of both lighting and temperature before you bring your plant home to avoid having to move it between the seasons each year.
Any humidity above 50% is suitable for these plants, but higher humidity is always better. They will grow best when left in at least 60% humidity, preferably closer to 70% to match their native habitats.
Again with humidity, change is the enemy. If you live in a region with massive fluctuations in humidity between dry and humid seasons, it’s best to keep your Fiddle Leaf Fig in a more controlled room and to manage the levels with a humidifier.
These plants will adapt to the slight fluctuations between seasons in high humidity areas but prefer as much consistency as possible.
How to Boost Humidity in Your Home
There are several recommendations for how to improve the humidity in your home. Some work better than others but are typically more costly. Dealing with humidity and water also means there is a risk of disease to consider.
Take a look at these ways to improve humidity to decide which is suitable for you:
Misting is easy to do but needs to be done several times daily. This also only improves conditions for a short period. For plants that do not like change, that’s not ideal. Misting also leaves water sitting on the foliage, encouraging fungal growth.
Place the pot on a tray filled with pebbles and water, and it will slowly evaporate to improve the humidity around your plant. Unfortunately, this only enhances conditions marginally – not enough if you are well below 50% humidity.
Placing your houseplants together in groups can also slightly raise the humidity in that area. However, since Fiddle Leaf Figs are often statement plants, getting this right can be tricky.
Choosing high humidity rooms
Kitchens and bathrooms that are used often generally have a higher humidity level than other areas of your home. While this fluctuates throughout the day, they are the safest bet for improving conditions – as long as the lighting conditions are right.
The best way to manage humidity around your plants is to use a humidifier. Effective options can be pricey, but they do wonders for the health of your plants by perfectly recreating the conditions they prefer.
Ensure the area does not get too humid or that the humidifier is not too close to the plant. This can encourage mold growth and the proliferation of fungal diseases.
For more, see our in-depth guide on the best positions for fiddle leaf figs to thrive in the home.
Caring for Fiddle Leaf Figs in Spring and Summer
During the peak growing seasons, ensure your plant’s needs are met to keep it growing to its full potential. If you live in an area with dry summers, make sure you up the humidity levels using one of the methods mentioned above.
If you run air conditioning, make sure your Fiddle Leaf is out of the path of the draft. Houseplants cannot stand cold air – especially from air-con – and will drop their leaves if exposed for long periods.
In the peak of summer, direct sunlight can be too harsh for the leaves, even for adapted plants. Cover the window with a sheer curtain in the afternoons to prevent burning.
Caring for Fiddle Leaf Figs Over Winter
As temperatures drop, try to keep indoor temperature and humidity consistent. Those running heaters will need to check humidity levels more often as they dry out the air and cause the soil in the pots to dry out far quicker.
Move any plants close to the windows a few steps away – cold air builds up around the glass. Consider giving your trees a bit more direct sunlight in this season as it is not as intense and far less likely to burn the leaves.
Try not to move the plant, alter your care routine, or change the environment during this time. It will take the plant a lot longer to bounce back during the colder months when growth is slow to non-existent.
Fiddle Leaf Fig Temperature and Humidity Tolerances FAQs:
What temperature is too cold for Fiddle Leaf Figs?
Fiddle Leaf Figs don’t enjoy temperatures under 60F and will greatly struggle if they drop below 50F.
What temperature is too hot for Fiddle Leaf Figs?
Although they live in warm tropical regions with high temperatures, Fiddle Leaf Figs don’t enjoy temperatures above 85F and will stop growing at 90F and above.
Are Fiddle Leaf Figs heat-sensitive?
Fiddle Leaf Figs are sensitive to many environmental changes, including high heat. They grow best when temperatures remain moderate.
Can I leave my Fiddle Leaf Fig outside?
If you live in a tropical or sub-tropical region, they can be left outside year-round. If you live in a region where winter temperatures drop below 55F frequently, it’s best to leave them inside. You can leave them outside in spring and summer and move them indoors in winter, but they do not like being moved and may drop their leaves.
While they can be dramatic, Fiddle Leaf Figs are well worth the effort. Keep temperature and humidity moderate and consistent and you won’t face any dreaded dropping leaves or drooping branches any time soon.
For more, see our in-depth guide to the meaning and symbolism of fig trees.