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How To Thicken Fiddle Leaf Fig Trunk – A Must-Read Guide

How To Thicken Fiddle Leaf Fig Trunk – A Must-Read Guide

The fiddle leaf fig tree is fast becoming a popular ornamental tree, both inside and outside the home.

The unique foliage and multiple branching make it an attractive décor item for any living space, bringing a bit of the outdoors into your home or office space.

Problems with your fiddle leaf fig tree can arise when the foliage around the top becomes mature and heavy, often causing the trunk to become unstable.

Is your fiddle leaf fig tree leaning a bit to the side?

This is a sign that you need to thicken the main trunk and possibly prune some smaller branches to prevent further damage or deterioration.


How to thicken Fiddle Leaf Fig trunk

One way to thicken the trunk of an indoor fiddle leaf fig tree is to toughen it up with wiggling. Give your tree a hearty shake by wiggling the main trunk to replicate the wind outdoors. Assess outdoor fiddle leaf fig trees for signs that they need more sunlight, which helps create more foliage that serves to support and stabilize the tree.


Strengthening and Thickening your Fiddle Leaf Fig Tree

If you are growing your fiddle leaf fig indoors, the trunk may not mature, which can make it weak and unstable.

Strengthening the fiddle leaf fig trunk is key to support the growth of foliage at the top of the tree, which gives the plant its unique and appealing look.

Wiggling the trunk of the tree regularly- a couple of times each day- can replicate the wind and weather outside.

This can foster resilience and strength in the tree trunk so that it can support its leaves and foliage. Give it a good and hearty shake- the tree can withstand it!


Step-by-step Guide for Thickening the Fiddle leaf Fig Tree Trunk


The Goal

Before initiating any task, deciding on your steps and the ultimate goal are a must. 

In this case, your purpose is to transform the weak, pencil-thin, and tilted fiddle leaf fig tree stem into a thick and strong trunk that can easily hold all its branches and maintain an efficient transport system. 


Environmental Factors

Do not expect any plant to grow in size and strength without being placed in its desired environment. 

In the case of the fiddle leaf fig tree, bright, dappled sunlight, well-draining soils, and balanced fertilizers are the most crucial growth determinants. 

Therefore, for thickening your fiddle leaf fig trunk, please place it in the sunniest part of your house, whether indoors or outdoors. 

The Sun’s energy helps the plant carry out photosynthesis, a natural food-making process, and aids them in growing and repairing new and damaged parts, respectively.


Mimicking Nature

Nature is an imperative and one of the most awe-inspiring aspects of the Universe. 

It does not only beautify the world with exotic and unique plants, but also plays various roles in growing them, sometimes in the form of wind, and other times as rain and sunlight. 

In the case of fiddle leaf fig, the trees respond to the winds by thickening their trunks. 

During some seasons, the winds are strong and adequate for strengthening the plants just on their own. However, in other seasons, they may be slow and not influence a plant’s growth much. 

To mimic the action of strong winds, wiggle your fiddle leaf fig tree’s trunk (as the wind would). 

For a young fig plant, remove the stake or supporting stick, locate its stem by separating a few leaves, and give it a good swing for one to two minutes. 

Do the same with your mature fiddle leaf figs; give them a good shake so that their strengthening systems are well-stimulated.

The constant and fairly strong wiggling motion initiates the advantages of a natural, outdoor environment where the wind plays a major role in any plant’s lifecycle. 

The manual shaking also saves the plant from overly strong winds that cause more damage than benefits. 

Furthermore, it prevents the plant from disagreeable elements, such as pests, shade from neighboring, invasive plants, and drought. 


Main Purpose

The idea here is to somewhat disturb the plant’s otherwise normal functioning, which is just enough to hold the plant upright with external support, such as a stake. 

The wiggling causes the fiddle leaf fig’s strengthening mechanisms to activate fully and begin working till the plant has a significantly thicker trunk. 


The Effects

Conclusively, the fiddle leaf fig tree forms much stronger parts and a thicker stem that can hold greater branch and foliage weight is more disease-resistant and structured and needs almost no external support.

It eventually outperforms its leggy counterparts, which were first withholding its growth. 


Regular Exercise

As physical exercise proves to be beneficial for humans, this wiggling motion results in a thicker and stronger fiddle leaf fig tree.

While the shaking process takes some time and dedication, the results are worth the hassle.

Initially, start with low-force wiggling. As your plant becomes accustomed to this exercise, increase its intensity while maintaining the fiddle leaf fig tree’s absolute safety. 

You can scale your wiggling movements to imitate the occasional gusty wind or tropical storm that these species usually encounter in the Western African rainforests. 


Establishing the Right Schedule

Repeat the wiggle exercise every one to two weeks for approximately one and a half to two minutes, depending on how much your fiddle leaf fig tree can tolerate.

If your fig tree is dependent on a stake, allow it to recover with the prop in place at the beginning. 

However, when you feel the plant is performing well just on its own, do these shaking motions without the prop, increasing the intensity gradually. 

Eventually, all your fiddle leaf fig trees will develop thicker and stronger trunks that require no external support. 

But, at the same time, please remember to maintain the plant’s favorable conditions, including bright, indirect sunlight, weekly watering, and well-draining and well-aerated soils, for the best results. 



Fiddle Leaf Fig Trees

Fiddle leaf fig trees are the perfect accent for indoor space, and they thrive in these locations.

You may see these trees anchored to a wall or fixture to help support the foliage and branches at the top.

But if you strengthen the trunk, it should be able to support its own weight.

If you want your tree to thrive, consider basic care tips for fiddle leaf figs that can help it mature into a hardy and resilient tree.

  • Only plan on planting these trees if you live in a very mild, quite warm climate. Fiddle leaf fig trees are vulnerable in temperatures under 65-degrees Fahrenheit, which is why so many people choose to cultivate them indoors, instead.
  • These trees can take up a lot of space, and it is not uncommon for these trees to spread widely. Fiddle leaf figs need a lot of airflow and circulation to thrive. Make sure you have the room before trying to fit these trees inside.
  • Fiddle leaf fig trees like filtered sunlight- particularly when they are young or immature. Direct or extreme sunlight can burn the foliage.
  • Only plant or pot in well-draining soil that will not allow the roots to sit in moisture, which can cause root rot.
  • Water at the base of the trunk and make sure the soil remains damp, though not soaked.
  • Fertilize your fiddle leaf fig trees with feed that’s high in nitrogen.


Troubleshooting Problems with Fiddle Leaf Figs

If you have a weak or leaning Fiddle Leaf Fig trunk, troubleshoot common problems to identify and alter the conditions for your tree.

Some common issues and easy solutions include the following tips!

  • Check the distance between your tree’s leaves to identify if the trunk is getting enough light and airflow to make it strong and healthy.
  • Consider where the tree is currently located. Is it getting enough sunlight? Are there fluctuations in temperature? Dropped leaves could be a sign that you need to move and reposition your tree.
  • Another reason why a fiddle leaf fig fails is too much water. Let the soil around your tree trunk dry out before watering, ideally.
  • If your tree is struggling, is it possible that it has fallen victim to root-rot? Overwatering or the tree roots submerged in water can cause rotting to happen. This prohibits the tree from absorbing nutrients, so leaves may drop, spots may appear, and your plant may wither.


Frequently Asked Questions About How To Thicken Fiddle Leaf Fig Trunk


Why should I Wiggle my Fiddle leaf fig?

Wiggling the trunk of your indoor tree replicates the wind which would help build resilience in an outdoor environment. You can also put your tree outside for periods of time to subject it to the rigors of being outside, and to foster trunk strength. Make sure to check the leaves for pests once you bring them indoors.


What are the best growing conditions for an indoor fiddle leaf fig tree?

Position your fiddle leaf fig tree in a sunny location in the home and know that they do not like extreme temperature fluctuations. Pot the tree in well-draining soil that you keep damp, but never too wet as this can contribute to root rot.


Why isn’t my fiddle leaf fig tree flowering?

Your fiddle leaf fig is susceptible to root rot, so make sure that you are not overwatering the plant. Also, allow for adequate drainage with many holes in the bottom of your container when keeping the fig inside.


How do I fix a leggy fiddle leaf fig tree?

To treat a leggy or tilted fiddle leaf fig tree, provide it with bright and dappled sunlight. Please place your plant under the sunniest spot in the house, which receives indirect sunlight for six to eight hours daily. However, do not leave it under the Sun for longer as it may lead to leaf-scorching. 


Will wiggling my fiddle leaf fig tree weaken its roots?

Wiggling your fiddle leaf fig tree for one and a half to two minutes every one to two weeks will help thicken its trunk considerably. Start with gentle shaking motions and gradually increase the intensity. If your plant is supported with a stake, initially wiggle it with the support in place. Once your fig tree adapts to this exercise, you may remove the stake. 



Thinking about getting a fiddle leaf fig tree? Or perhaps you have one already that is displaying signs of a weak trunk?

Use these tips to stabilize, support, and foster growth in your tree.

Author Bio

Daniel Iseli

Taking care of houseplants and gardening are my greatest passions. I am transforming my apartment into an urban jungle and am growing veggies in my indoor and outdoor garden year-round.

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