The tale of the thriving fiddle leaf

Each and every night I hop into my bed (then usually have to get up as Maggie wakes up because she has an automatic built in detector that allows her to know when my head hits the pillow and wake accordingly), look up on the mantle piece in our room and say to Rob “Look at it Rob! It’s THRIVING!” So proud am I of the fact that I have kept a fiddle leaf alive for the past 16 months.

I was given one of these fickle plants (also known as a fucked leaf, fickle leaf etc) from my mate Mrs Munro. I have moved it once in those 16 months, and almost lost it over the summer holidays when we were away for almost 4 weeks and I forgot to get someone to water it, but I am SO proud of the fact that it’s alive and GROWING that I had to share the news.

I have shared some tips from readers before about these fiddly plants before in this post and then again when I hadn’t killed it in this post.

Check out the growth over the warmer months. This was it in October or November last year…

And then now, in March.

Much like one of my children I am documenting the progress of its growth because I want to know just how far we have come and when it inevitably carks it (like they all seem to do) I will have these sweet memories.

I arrived at Styling You’s house this afternoon and had a wander around her garden like I  like to do and stumbled across her fiddle leafs which her hubby threw in the garden last year when they were moved to their gravesite from inside. Like many MANY people they bought the plants and probably spent a small fortune doing so. Slowly, slowly they started to wilt and fade until they were so sad and desperate that Nikki said to throw them out, but her hubby whacked them in the garden instead.

And now look at them!

This was a cutting (a dead cutting) thrown into a pot and look at it!

Even this one is not looking too shabby. Much better than inside.

Now we couldn’t live in any different climates if we tried. It’s 8 degrees at home tonight and about 20 degrees warmer here but there are some consistencies here:

1. Neglect within reason

I have not moved mine and stuck with a very similar care pattern that I have not varied. These things do not like change. I actually have to report into a larger pot which I know will likely be the beginning of the end, but neglect is good

2. Dust those leaves

Think like a rainforest and spray with water if you can often. This can be whacking them under a shower, putting outside for a spray with a hose or on a rainy day or wiping wet a damp cloth to keep the dust off and making them nice and glossy. Also think about a sun bath in the same way – take them outside for the day for a full hit of Vitamin D.

3. Limited water

I only water mine every 7-10 days and in winter this will be stretched out even further. I usually just give a glass of water (I remember to water it when I see the empty water glass on Rob’s bedside table) and that’s about all I give it, so not much water

Other than that – leave them be and they will be happy. Like I said, I am no expert and I have NO doubts that soon enough I will be taking mine outside to a similar gravesite but you never know…whack it out there and see what happens. You never know…and could have a cracking one like Nikki’s before you know it!

These are some good Instagram accounts to follow as well:

@thebotancialsociety (these guys even have an e-book & workshops!)

Do you have any tips about this tricky plants that you can share with us?
Got one about to die? Go chuck it in the garden!

You may also like this post I wrote about other indoor plants in the home too.


  1. Living in Denver with the arid temps might not work in your country, but, I started to lose the whole plants and then saved it with the attached watering spikes. A full bottle of wine filled with water last weeks and it’s a slow drip, never soggy, just perfect for this plant and the others around my house. And if you need to leave town, they never complain.

  2. I have a fiddle leaf – I bought mine about 3.5 years ago when they were super popular. There were none available in Brisbane (where I live) so I found one for sale on EBay from a nursery in Melbourne. I bought it and it arrived flat packed in a postage bag, bare roots, six leaves and all. I was pretty sure I had wasted my nearly $100 (they were expensive back then too). But today it stands taller than me and is thriving. It gets filtered light, no direct air conditioning and one cup of water a week – I am never moving it!!

  3. Well done beth!
    Love Lisa’s story too!
    You have a green thumb as do i! Take after our mothers!
    Love a garden walk to check out plants too!
    Also that mr sy put in a pot and it struck! … fab!
    Must tell my daughter, as hers is still thriving with much the same attention!
    Much love mxx

  4. Mine is not looking so great. I may put it outside.

    Thanks Beth

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