LOVE THE LOOK:  Fiddle Leaf Fig Tree - REAL VS. FAKE


A live fiddle leaf fig tree is a plant of true beauty:  the tall narrow trunk, the huge glossy leaves, and the organic touch it adds to your home is really hard to beat.  However, you might be wondering if the “live” version is something you can pull off, or should you leave that to the professionals. ;)  Take a look at the care required and details for each:




Water the fiddle leaf fig tree only when top layer of soil is dry. Test this by sticking your finger into the soil.  Test frequently until you can determine how often your fiddle leaf fig tree needs water.  

When it is time to water, do so thoroughly (until the water drains in the planter saucer).  Allow the plant to get dry soil again before watering next time. If plants don’t get enough water, new leaves will turn brown and drop; on the other hand, if they are overwatered, the oldest leaves (toward the base of the plant) will turn brown and fall off.

Keep in mind, watering needs can change based on seasons, level of humidity, etc. Then water thoroughly (until the water drains into the saucer) and allow to dry out again. 


Once a month!


Rich, well-drained peaty soil. Plan on re-potting about once a year because once roots become crowded they will start growing through the container’s drainage hole, causing circulation problems and even root rot.


The fiddle leaf fig tree needs a lot of light - but not direct light.  Big rays of sun don’t need to be hitting it at all times, but a steady flow of light is important. Turn every few months, once it starts leaning in the direction of the light.  And make sure the area is not drafty!


The big leaves will need dusting! Use a soft cloth, no crazy movements.


Doesn’t get any better than a thriving, healthy, live fiddle leaf fig tree.  No two plants are alike, and they make a truly stunning statement in any type of decor.  


For a roughly 5’ tall live plant, I have seen prices range from $200-$400 in my local nurseries.  However, keep in mind that does not include the cost of a decorative planter - which you will absolutely need, because the black plastic planters provided are seriously ugly.






The big leaves will need dusting! Use a soft cloth.


I’ll be honest - I can spot a fake fiddle leaf fig tree instantly.  However, the fake options on the market have improved DRASTICALLY as they have become trendy in recent years.  So even though I might know the tree is fake, I still think it can be a beautiful decorative addition to a room.  


This category varies wildly.  I’ve included a few fake fiddle leafs below for you to shop - and you will see the pricing starts around $200, which will buy you a very beautiful fake fiddle.  I’ve seen some fake fiddle leafs that are over $1000, so you can shop within all sorts of budgets.

In conclusion, I’ll bare my soul.  In my own home, I would only purchase a fake fiddle leaf fig tree.  Why?  Because I am a plant murderer of the worst kind.  It wouldn’t be worth the $$$ for me to buy a beautiful live tree, and then have to replace it every six months.  I absolutely prefer the look of a live tree - so if you are a plant person - I envy you!  Go on with your bad self and pick out the prettiest fiddle in the nursery.  But luckily for the rest of us, there are great looking fakes that can add the perfect touch of green in our spaces.

Tell me in the comments below - after carefully analyzing the pros and cons, would you buy a live or fake fiddle leaf fig?

Lauren Thomas2 Comments