We get a lot of questions about how to clean fiddle leaf fig leaves, so we thought it would be helpful to create a quick video. Learn the best way to clean your fiddle leaf fig leaves, the mistakes to avoid, and how often you should clean the leaves of your plant. Watch this video to learn more!
Table of Contents
How to Clean Fiddle Leaf Fig Leaves (Video)
How, When, and Why to Dust Your Fiddle Leaf Fig Leaves
As a fiddle leaf fig owner, you probably know all about the importance of consistent watering, indirect light, and fast-draining soil to keep your tree healthy, but it’s easy to forget another element that helps keep these plants healthy and gorgeous.
After awhile, you might notice the leaves of your fiddle leaf fig gathering dust, which not only looks bad, but is also harmful to the plant.
Dust clogs the pores of the leaves, which is dangerous because it inhibits the plant’s ability to carry out photosynthesis (the process by which plants make energy from sunlight). If its leaves are caked in dust, the tree will essentially starve!
So it’s important to give your tree’s leaves a thorough yet gentle dusting regularly.
When to Dust Fiddle Leaf Fig Leaves
Dust the mature leaves every week or so, and ONLY the mature leaves.
We learned this the hard way. New leaves tend to be thin and delicate, and dusting them can tear holes or otherwise traumatize them. This can affect how the leaves grow out, so make sure to baby your new growth, mist new buds regularly, and only dust the leaves that are at least 2 or 3 months old and can withstand a little rubbing with a cloth.
It’s also good to dust the leaves at this point because they haven’t had the chance to accumulate a lot of dust, so you’re getting a head start.
How to Dust Your Fiddle Leaf Fig Leaves
Step 1: Gather Your Supplies
To dust your leaves, you’ll need a spray bottle (traditional or pump nozzle) that you can get online or at just about any store.
You’ll also need a microfiber cloth or other very soft cloth and a terrycloth tower with reinforced corners. You can try other materials, of course, but this is what has worked best for us.
Consider grabbing our new Houseplant Leaf Shine. I love this spray because not only does it protect your leaves from dust and give them a healthy shine, it also wards off pests! It’s perfect for cleaning and protecting. Over time, it even helps your plant retain more of its own moisture!
Step 2: Spray the Leaves
This part can get messy, so you might want to move smaller plants to the sink or shower or put some towels down around larger plants.
Use the spray bottle to thoroughly wet both sides of the leaves, and let it sit for about four minutes. This quick soak will help loosen up accumulated dust, kind of like soaking dirty dishes before you wash them. This is where the tub or towels will come in handy to catch excess runoff.
Step 3: Wipe the Leaves
After your leaves have soaked for a few minutes, use the microfiber cloth to gently wipe down the leaves. Use your non-dominant hand to carefully support the leaf from underneath and use your dominant hand to wipe the dusty water from each section here of the foliage. Use the corners of the terry cloth to get down into the veins of the leaf. Again, be gentle here; you don’t want to tear your leaves!
Make sure to dry the leaves so they don’t stay wet, because this can also impede photosynthesis and the tree’s respiration.
Keep the Leaves Dust-Free!
Ah, that’s better.
Your tree’s leaves can now soak up all the light, carbon dioxide, and moisture it needs.
To avoid dusty buildup in the future, keep your fiddle leaf fig’s home tidy and dust-free.
Meg S. Miller is an influential speaker and multiple award-winning author with nearly a decade of writing experience. In her latest book, Benefit of the Debt (April 28, 2018), Miller offers a unique perspective that gives fresh insight into common sources of brokenness within Christian marriages. Miller, her husband, Joe, and their three children live near Washington, D.C., where they own and operate an organic farm. When not writing, Miller loves doting on her six prized fiddle leaf fig trees. Learn more about Meg at www.benefitofthedebt.com.
Grab the Essentials for Your Fiddle Leaf Fig:
- Premium Fiddle Leaf Fig Potting Soil
- Fiddle Leaf Fig Plant Food
- Root Rot Treatment
- Houseplant Leaf Armor to protect against insects, bacteria, and fungus (As an added bonus, it also cleans and adds shine to your plant’s leaves!)
- Moisture meter to always know when your plant is thirsty.
To learn more:
- Sign up for our free Fiddle Leaf Fig Care 101 Webinar or enroll in our free Fiddle Leaf Fig Course for advanced fiddle leaf fig care.
- Make sure you’re subscribed to our newsletter.
- Read The Fiddle Leaf Fig Expert, your complete guide to growing healthy fiddle leaf fig plants. The book is available in full-color paperback or Kindle edition on Amazon now!
- Click to join our community on Facebook: Fiddle Leaf Fig Plant Resource Group.