The fig tree is one of the most popular ornamental plants in offices around the world. The beauty of this plant is its healthy, lush, and vibrant leaves.
Fig trees are relatively easy to grow, easy to care for, and can survive extreme weather conditions. However, to ensure the growth of this plant, one of the most important issues that you need to pay attention to is watering.
Regarding watering, there are many opinions about bottom watering. Bottom watering fiddle leaf fig is effective and safe? What are the pros and cons of this method? Let’s find out the details in this article.
What Is Bottom Watering Fiddle Leaf Fig?
As you know, water plays an extremely important role in the growth and development of plants. Water helps sustain life, metabolism, and photosynthesis for plants. So, watering properly has always become a topic that many people care about when gardening.
Too much water or too little water both seriously affect plants. Therefore, many methods of automatic watering or bottom watering are applied to avoid waterlogging or lack of water.
Bottom watering is a watering technique in which you simply place the potted plant in a tray or container with water and let the plant’s root system draw water from the bottom of the pot through the vent holes.
This watering technique has the same mechanism of action as a self-watering pot. The self-watering pot will also include a potted plant and a larger pot that contains water. The bonsai pot will connect to the water tray with a wire to absorb water when needed.
Advantages And Disadvantages Of Bottom Watering Fiddle Leaf Fig
Any watering method will have advantages and disadvantages. Therefore, you need to thoroughly understand the advantages and disadvantages of this method to overcome and adjust the watering habits of the fig tree.
- Bottom watering works especially well for plants with intertwined roots like fig trees. Because it helps plants absorb water better than traditional irrigation.
- If the soil is compacted and poorly drained, this method will work.
- Avoid wetting the leaves and water getting on the leaves makes it easy for fungi and harmful bacteria to grow in a humid environment.
- The roots at the bottom of the pot will have a better chance to absorb water
- Stimulates the root system to grow downward instead of clinging to the pot wall
- Limit waterlogging because the root system will absorb water when needed compared to watering from the top but not controlling the amount of water.
- Suitable for those who have little time to take care of or are often away from home.
- Increased ability to accumulate excess salt and minerals due to the lack of opportunity to excrete. To remedy this situation, you need to water from the top from time to time to remove salt and minerals that have accumulated in the soil.
- The upper roots can become dry and dehydrated if they cannot transport enough water upwards.
- Difficulty in fertilizing because you won’t be able to control how much fertilizer the fig tree absorbs.
Should You Water The Fig Tree From The Bottom?
There are no definite answers here!
For the fig tree to grow and develop at its best, you need to combine methods in each stage of the plant instead of trying to maintain a single method.
As you know the biggest advantage of the method of watering the bottom of the pot is to avoid waterlogging and over-watering. Those who tend to water a lot of plants can apply this method. Or in case you don’t have much time to care for or travel, this method will keep the fig tree safe during your absence.
However, this option should only be applied for a short time when plants have stabilized in growth rate. Specifically, during the young plant period, they may need more water and the amount of water needed to cover the entire root branches to promote their growth. Or during this period, fig tree needs fertilizer to grow, you still need to water them the traditional way during this period.
To address this, you still need to water the top down at least once a month to remove excess salt and minerals from the soil. At the same time, the traditional method of irrigation will bring many benefits to the plants when fertilizing. Because the entire root branch will have an equal chance of absorbing the fertilizer. If the fertilizer is only absorbed through the lower root branches, the upper root branches will not be able to grow and develop well.
Related post: Red Spots On Fiddle Leaf Fig? (Explained)
How To Water The Bottom Of A Fig Tree?
To perform this method, you just need to prepare a tool that is larger than the pot and fill it with water. The steps are very simple and do not require any complicated techniques.
- Step 1: Check the humidity in the pot with a hygrometer or use your finger to check. If the ground is 2-3 inches dry, you can start watering the plants from the bottom.
- Step 2: Fill the container with water halfway or more and make sure the water does not overflow the pot from above.
- Step 3: You can soak the potted plant in a bucket of water for about 10 minutes. Then check the moisture and increase the time when the soil is wet.
- Step 4: Place the pot in a place with good air circulation to remove excess water escaping from the vent.
Bottom watering is a watering method that has many great benefits for plants. Its outstanding advantage is its ability to avoid waterlogging as fig trees will absorb the necessary amount of water they need. However, the disadvantage of this method is the accumulation of excess salts and minerals that are not removed periodically. Excess salt and minerals will harm plants.
To solve this problem, you need to water the plants from the top from time to time at least once a month to remove salts and minerals. Any watering method will have advantages and disadvantages. So, you need to incorporate it in each stage of fig trees’ growth.