Oh fiddle leaf fig, how I love you! I was giddy when I finally located my fiddle at my local nursery. Yep, I was that crazy lady with two toddlers trying to get a giant tree into her car. The kids promptly named our new friend "Figgy" and you've probably spotted him in many of my photos and posts.
I knew right away that Figgy needed to be repotted. His roots were pushing through the top of the soil and when I watered him, the water just rushed out of the drainage holes in the grow pot.
We found Figgy a new larger pot at Ollie's Bargain Outlet. Seriously, Ollie's has some pretty fantastic pots at amazing prices. You don't want to pick a pot that is significantly larger than the current grow pot. A few inches larger will do the job. We picked a pretty blue and green terracotta number and paid $23.
The first thing that I did to get ready to repot was to mix up my potting mix. This is something that I learned after having many house plants suffer from over-or-under-watering problems. Most commercial potting soils are just too heavy for house plants and they don't do a great job at letting water drain away or letting roots breathe. I started to make my own potting mix by combining 1/3 organic potting mix, 1/3 vermiculite and 1/3 perlite. My plants are so, so much happier since I started to do this!
For a big job like this one, I like to make my mix in a big plastic container. I find that I am always either repotting a current plant or adding a new plant to my home so it's great to have a bunch of potting mix ready to go.
After you have your mix ready, you can add that mix to your new pot. Add enough mix so that the top of the root ball of your fig will sit even with the top of your pot. I was lucky enough to have a small helper for this job.
Now it's time to gently remove your fig from the current pot. I like to do this by squeezing in the sides of the grow pot until the root ball gently slides out of the pot when it is tipped on the side. As predicted, my poor Figgy was terribly root bound.
I decided to do some root pruning. The trick here is to remove no more than 20% of the root structure. I used an old knife to gently remove just the outside layer of roots all around the root ball.
Here is the end result...
Next, we picked up Figgy by the bottom of the root ball and moved him into his new home. Use your potting mix to fill in around the sides of the root ball using your fingers to gently push the soil into any air pockets. I also like to water as I go here to ensure that the soil is nice and damp (not wet!). When everything is filled in, give your happy plant a good watering.
Keep your newly repotted friend out of direct sunlight and you may need to water a bit more frequently at first. You will also probably notice that you fig is looking mighty perky - mine sure does!
Hey there Figgy, aren't you looking lovely!