How to Treat Fiddle Leaf Fig Black Spots?

Are you seeing black spots on the leaves of your fiddle leaf fig? It can be heartbreaking to see your beloved houseplant in distress. In this blog, we’ll discuss why fiddle leaf figs get black spots, what you can do to fix them, and how to prevent them from occurring in the future. Read on to learn more!

Fiddle Leaf Fig Black Spots
Fiddle Leaf Fig Black Spots

Why do Fiddle Leaf Figs Have Black Spots?

To treat black spots on fiddle leaf fig, it is important to understand the cause. Identifying the problem will allow for targeted treatment rather than using a one-size-fits-all approach. So why does fiddle leaf have black spots?

Fiddle leaf figs develop black spots for various reasons, including too much direct sunlight, a lack of humidity, or even an infestation of pests. In some cases, the spots can also be caused by a fungal infection or a nutrient deficiency in the soil. Also, improper watering can cause the leaves to become dry and blackened.

Here are common reason of fiddle leaf fig black spots:

Potting with no drainage 

If you notice a black spot on your fiddle leaf fig, the first thing to check is that its soil is soggy. Without drainage, the soil in the pot will stay too wet for too long, resulting in root rot. This can cause the plant to develop black spots on its leaves.

Root rot is caused by overwatering, so it is important to ensure that the soil in your fiddle leaf fig’s pot drains correctly. If the water cannot drain away from the roots, it will accumulate in the pot, causing the roots to be waterlogged. This will create an environment where fungi and bacteria can thrive, resulting in root rot and the eventual formation of black spots. 

Inconsistent watering 

Inconsistent watering can be one of the major culprits when it comes to black spots appearing on fiddle leaf figs. When you water your plant unevenly, either by giving too much water at one time or not enough water at another, it can cause the plant to become stressed. The result of this stress is often black spots on the leaves of the fiddle leaf fig. 

When a plant is not getting enough water, its leaves will turn black as a defense mechanism. Also, it cannot absorb essential nutrients and minerals from the soil and will suffer from nutrient deficiencies. This can lead to black spots on leaves and stems as the plant’s tissue dies off. 

It can be pests and bugs

Fungus gnats are tiny, dark-colored insects commonly found in potting soil. They’re attracted to moisture and can quickly infest a fiddle leaf fig. Fungus gnats will feed on the plant’s roots and leave black spots on the leaves behind. 

Mealybugs are little, white, cottony bugs that feed on the sap of your fiddle leaf fig. They tend to congregate in clusters on the underside of the leaves and will eventually cause black spots or yellowing. 

Scale insects are sap-sucking pests that appear as small, bumpy brown spots. They feed on the plant’s sap and can quickly infest a fiddle leaf fig. The damage caused by scale insects can range from yellowing leaves to black spots and even wilting of the foliage.

Direct sun

Too much direct sunlight can cause the leaves to become scorched. The leaves are particularly susceptible to direct sunlight because they are thinner and less rugged than other plants. When exposed to too much direct sunlight, they become dehydrated and desiccated, which causes the edges of the leaves to turn brown or black.

Avoiding direct sunlight is the best way to prevent sunburn on your Fiddle Leaf Fig. If you have the plant outdoors, keep it in a shaded spot, such as under a large tree or awning. If you have it indoors, keep it away from direct sunlight, at least 6 feet away from any windows or skylights. 

Fungal disease

If you’ve noticed black spots forming on your fiddle leaf fig leaves, it could be a sign of a fungal disease. Fungal diseases can affect any type of plant, including fiddle leaf figs, and can cause discolouration, spots, and other signs of distress. 

Fungal black spot on fiddle leaf fig
Fungal black spot on fiddle leaf fig

A variety of factors can cause fungal diseases in fiddle leaf figs. One common cause is too much moisture. Fiddle leaf figs need plenty of water and humidity to stay healthy, but if the soil is too wet, it can cause fungal diseases such as leaf spots and root rot. 

It can also be caused by poor air circulation. If your fiddle leaf fig is not getting enough fresh air or is kept in an overly warm, stuffy room, this can also create the ideal conditions for fungal diseases to take hold.

Identifying and treating fungal diseases in fiddle leaf figs 

Fungal diseases in fiddle leaf figs can be identified by dark spots or discolouration on the leaves. The spots may have a velvety texture and can grow larger over time. The yellowing of the leaves may also accompany the spots.

The best way to treat a fungal disease in a fiddle leaf fig is to reduce the amount of moisture and humidity around the plant. Allow the soil to dry out between waterings, and if possible, increase the amount of air circulation around the plant. You should cut off the affected leaves to stop the spread.

If the fungal disease persists after these steps, you may need a fungicide to treat the plant. Follow the instructions on the product carefully.

High humidity

High humidity can create an environment favorable for bacterial growth, leading to these black spots. The fiddle leaf fig leaves are susceptible to a range of fungal and bacterial diseases, and high humidity can increase the chances of infection. In the right conditions, a fungus like the notorious Fusarium can grow and spread to the leaves, leaving black spots.

cold shock

It’s important to understand that fiddle leaf figs are tropical and need to be kept in warm, humid environments. The ideal temperatures range from 65 to 80 degrees Fahrenheit. Cold shock can occur if an FLF is exposed to temperatures below 60 degrees Fahrenheit or a sudden temperature change. 

When cold shock happens, the water in the cells of the plant becomes frozen. This causes the leaves to become soft and black spots may appear. Other symptoms of cold shock in a fiddle leaf fig include wilting, yellowing of the leaves, and even leaf drop. 

If your fiddle leaf fig has already been exposed to cold shock, it’s important to take steps to help it recover. Move it to a warmer environment, and keep it away from cold drafts or air conditioning vents. You should also check the leaves of your fiddle leaf fig for damage, and if any are damaged, trim them off. 

How to Get Rid of Black Spots on Fiddle Leaf Figs?

Move to a Better Location

If your fiddle leaf fig has black spots on its leaves, it likely indicates that the plant needs more light. While treating the problem with fungicides is possible, the best solution is to move the fiddle leaf fig to a better location. 

The first step when moving a fiddle leaf fig to a better location is identifying the problem. If the plant receives too little light, you must move to a spot with more light. The ideal location will have bright, indirect light and should not be in a south-facing window, which can cause the leaves to burn. 

If the plant receives too much light, you must find a spot with more shade. make sure to place the plant at least 5 feet away from the window to protect it from the harsh rays of the sun. 

Removing Leaves with Black Spots

You need to remove them from your fiddle leaf fig’s leaves. Start by inspecting each leaf for any black spots. If you find any, use clean, sharp scissors or pruners to cut off the affected leaf. Make sure to cut just the whole leaf, which will ensure the spot doesn’t return. You need to burn off the leaves after cutting. 

If pests cause black spots, spray the leaves with diluted neem oil or insecticidal soap solution. This should help to get rid of the pests and will also help to reduce the appearance of the spots. 

Applying Fungicide

Black spots can be caused by two different types of fungi: Cercospora spp. and Phyllosticta spp. Cercospora spp. is the most common cause of black spots on fiddle leaf figs, and it is typically found in warm, humid climates. Phyllosticta spp. is much less common but usually found in cooler, drier climates.

Once you have identified the type of black spots on your fiddle leaf fig, you can choose the appropriate fungicide to treat the problem. For Cercospora spp, a liquid fungicide with the active ingredient chlorothalonil is recommended. For Phyllosticta spp, a powder fungicide with the active ingredient mancozeb is recommended. 

When applying fungicide to your fiddle leaf fig, it is important to carefully follow the manufacturer’s instructions on the label.

Applying neem oil

Neem oil is an organic and biodegradable pesticide derived from the flowers and fruits of the neem tree. It’s effective against a wide variety of insect pests, including aphids, mites, and scale, and it can also help prevent fungal infections such as powdery mildew and black spot. Applying neem oil to your fiddle leaf fig can help rid it of black spots and keep it looking healthy and vibrant. 

Here’s how to do it:

1. Start by using a soft cloth to wipe down each leaf of the fiddle leaf fig with a mild soapy solution. This will help remove any dirt and debris that may be clogging the pores of the leaves and prevent the neem oil from penetrating the plant’s tissue.

2. Mix 2 tablespoons of neem oil with 1 quart of water. You can also add a few drops of mild dish soap to help the oil mix better with the water.

3. Use a spray bottle to apply the solution to the affected leaves. Make sure to apply it on both sides of the leaves and cover the undersides.

4. Let the solution sit on the leaves for 10-15 minutes before wiping it away with a soft cloth. This will allow the neem oil to soak in and do its job.

5. Repeat the process once a week or as needed to prevent the black spots from returning.

How to Prevent Black Spots on Fiddle Leaf Figs?

You can take some simple steps to prevent black spots from appearing on your fiddle leaf fig.


Fiddle leaf figs need to be watered regularly to maintain their health, but it’s important not to over-water them, as this can cause black spots to develop. The best way to water your fiddle leaf figs is to give them a deep, thorough watering once every two weeks. Make sure to water the soil until the water runs freely from the bottom of the pot, and then allow the soil to dry out before re-watering.

Increase Air Circulation

Good air circulation is key to keeping your fiddle leaf figs healthy and free from black spots. Place your plant in an area with plenty of airflows, such as near a window or fan. This will help ensure your plant gets the air it needs to thrive.


Fiddle-leaf figs need plenty of sunlight to survive, but too much direct sunlight can cause the leaves to develop black spots. Place your plant in an area with bright, indirect light, such as near a window. This will help keep your fiddle leaf fig healthy and free from black spots.

Checking for Pests

Pests can also cause black spots to appear on your fiddle leaf fig. Regularly check your plant for signs of pests, such as small, black spots on the leaves. If you find any pests on your plant, you may need to treat it with an insecticide.

Plant Selection

When choosing a fiddle leaf fig, look for a plant with bright, healthy green leaves and no visible signs of damage. Avoid plants with wilting or discolored leaves, as these can indicate that the plant is unhealthy or infected with pests.

Wrap UP

Treating fiddle leaf fig black spots is a relatively easy process. By following the steps outlined in this article, you should be able to successfully treat the black spots and keep your fiddle leaf fig looking healthy. As always, ensure that you are providing your plant with adequate light, water and humidity to prevent these spots from appearing in the future.