The fiddle-leaf fig is a houseplant grown for its broad, leathery, eye-catching leaves that reach 12 inches long and 6 inches wide. The plant is generally easy to grow but occasionally experiences leaf spotting.
Bacterial Leaf Spot
Fiddle-leaf fig houseplants infected with bacterial leaf spot have what appear to be water-soaked spots that are often ringed in yellow. The spots are usually uniform in size and sometimes emit a sticky substance. Markings enlarge when conditions are wet, and turn into reddish-brown speckles when conditions are dry. Treatment and prevention entails removing diseased plant parts and avoiding crowded conditions, low temperatures and wet foliage.
Fungal Leaf Spot
There are a variety of fungi that cause leaf spotting. Spots caused by fungi are small and brown with yellow margins when the foliage is alive, and black when foliage is dead. Treatment and prevention includes removing infected plant parts, and inhibiting the fungi from reproducing by increasing air circulation around the plant and keeping foliage dry.
Leaf spotting can also occur because of adverse conditions such as hot grease spattering on plants in the kitchen, and misdirected aerosol spraying.
- "The Complete Houseplant Survival Manual"; Barbara Pleasant; 2005
- Clemson University Cooperative Extension: Houseplant Diseases & Disorders
- Purdue University Cooperative Extension Service: Houseplant Problems
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