Ficus lyrata or Fiddle-Leaf Fig, a native of Tropical Africa, is a large evergreen tree often reaching 40 feet in nature. They have large shiny green leaves up to 15 inches long and attractive reddish-brown bark. Their size is easily controlled with pot size and selective pruning. They have been popular houseplant for ages.
Blooming Time: In the spring, they produce 2 figs with white dots at the tips of branches. The figs reach about 1 ¼ inches (3 cm) in diameter.
Culture: Ficus lyrata need full sun to partial shade with intermediate to warm temperatures. In the greenhouse, we use a soil mix consisting of 2 parts peat moss to 2 parts loam to 1 part sand or perlite. The plants are kept moist at all times and fertilized on a weekly basis during the spring and summer. During the winter months, the plants are watered on a weekly basis, being careful to not let one dry out completely. The plants tend to grow unbranched and you should top them at an early age to promote branching.
Propagation: Ficus lyrata are propagated by air layers.
Ficus lyrata was featured as Plant of the Week July 19-25, 2002.
Guide to Past Plants-of-the-Week:
Cal's Plant of the Week was provided as a service by the University of Oklahoma Department of Microbiology & Plant Biology and specifically the late Cal Lemke, who used to be OU's botany greenhouse grower and an avid gardener at home as well. If the above links don't work, then try the overview site. You may also like to look at the thumbnail index. ©1998-2012 All rights reserved.