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Last Updated:May 27, 2023

Fiddle Leaf Fig Light Requirements (FULLY Explained!)

featured-fiddle leaf fig light requirements

Worried about whether your Fiddle Leaf Fig tree is getting enough light? Don’t let these hard-to-please tropical plants intimidate you! Read on to learn all about Fiddle Leaf Fig light requirements.

Getting the light right is the most important factor for a healthy Fiddle Leaf. Fiddle Leaf Fig tree needs bright light. The plant prefers full sun (direct sun for most of the day) but it does fine in bright indirect light as well. Be careful though – don’t expose your Fiddle Leaf Fig to direct sun straight away. Give your plant some time to get acclimated to full sun for most of the day. Otherwise, your Ficus Lyrata may get sunburned. Learn more about what is bright indirect light.

Me holding a couple of my favorite Fiddle Leaf Figs

How Much Light Does a Fiddle Leaf Fig Need?

Minimal amount of light: 5,000 lux (500 FC)
Optimal amount of light: 40,000+ lux (4,000+ FC)
Direct sun tolerance: 8+ hours of direct sunlight/day
Category: Full sun

Fiddle Leaf Fig tree needs an average of at least 5,000 lux (500 FC) to be healthy. When it comes to optimum Fiddle Leaf Fig light requirements, you’re looking at 40,000 + lux. The direct sun makes anywhere from 40,000 to 100,000 lux of light (roughly 4,000 – 10,000 foot candles). Keep in mind that this plant needs more light as it grows. The bigger it gets the more sun it requires to grow and support the existing leaves of Fiddle Leaf Fig plant.

The more light a Fiddle Leaf gets, the more water the Fiddle Leaf Fig will require and the more frequent watering. Proper light is also very important for avoiding root rot. More light means more photosynthesis. More photosynthesis means the plant will use more water. Using more water reduces the time roots will spend in wet soil, and the chances of root rot.

How Do I Know If My Fiddle Leaf Fig is Getting Enough Light?

The best way to check whether your Fiddle Leaf Fig plant is getting enough light is to use a light meter and make sure your plant is getting at least 5,000 lux (500 FC). I recommend using Dr. Meter Light Meter. Another way to know if Fiddle Leaf Fig light requirements are met is to observe it. If you’ve had it for several months and it’s growing big, healthy leaves, then it probably is getting enough light. Signs a Fiddle Leaf Fig tree is not getting enough light – it will look leggy and new green leaves will be smaller in size.

Keep your plant close to the windows. The closer it is, the more light it will get. Every foot and every cm matters. Light intensity drops exponentially with distance from the windows.

A lush Fiddle Leaf Fig with plenty of green leaves

What Is The Best Window Direction For Fiddle Leaf Fig / Where To Place Fiddle Leaf ?

The best window direction for Fiddle Leaf Fig tree depends on the hemisphere you live in. For the Northern hemisphere, these are the best window directions in order:

  1. south facing window
  2. west facing window
  3. east facing window
  4. north facing window

As you can see, a north window is the least desirable placement. Can Fiddle Leaf Fig plants grow in a north-facing window? They can, but you may need to use grow lights, in this case, to help your Fiddle Leaf Fig stay healthy.

On the other hand, here’s how window directions look for the Southern hemisphere, from best to least favorable one:

  1. north facing window
  2. west facing window
  3. east facing window
  4. south facing window

Can you put a Fiddle Leaf Fig plant in a south-facing window? Yes – if there’s no other option than to keep your Fiddle Leaf facing south, don’t despair. Just use grow lights to compensate for the lack of natural light.

Fiddle Leaf Fig Plant with new growth in front of a window

Can Fiddle Leaf Figs Be In Direct Sunlight?

Yes, Fiddle Leaf Figs can be in direct sunlight (direct light). This is, their ideal placement as they have high light requirements. Make sure you give your plant time to adjust to the full sun though. Expose it to the direct sun gradually to prevent leaf sunburn. Note that Fiddle Fig trees can do well in bright indirect light as well.

Sunburned ficus Leaf Fig Leaf

How Many Hours Of Sunlight Does a Fiddle Leaf Fig Need?

Fiddle Leaf Fig doesn’t need any direct sunlight (direct light) if it’s getting enough bright indirect light. But it if it can get some direct sunlight, it will appreciate it. If it gets about 4-6 hours of direct sunlight/day, it will do even better.

Is Indoor Light Enough For a Fiddle Leaf Fig?

Indoor light can be enough for a Fiddle Leaf Fig light requirements, as long as you provide enough bright indirect light. Keep in mind that light is the most limiting factor when it comes to indoor plant growth. The best way to make sure there is enough natural light indoors is to use a light meter. Grow lights come in pretty handy if your Fig trees aren’t getting enough light.

Fiddle Leaf Fig tree indoors

Can a Fiddle Leaf Fig Grow in Low Light?

Yes, a Fiddle Leaf Fig tree can grow in low light. However, there’s a serious downside to it. Chances are your plant will not grow many new leaves and if it does, its leaves may be smaller in size. You may notice Leaf drop too and other issues. So even though it will grow, it won’t be a happy or healthy plant. This plant enjoys plenty of light so keeping it in low light is not the best Fiddle Leaf Fig care.

Do Fiddle Leaf Figs Like Afternoon Sun?

Yes, Fiddle Leaf Figs love afternoon sun. Their bright light requirements make them enjoy morning sun as well as afternoon sun.

Can a Fiddle Leaf Fig Get Too Much Sun?

Fiddle Leaf Fig tree can not get too much sun. But it may get sunburned if you expose it to too much direct light without giving it time to acclimate. Provide exposure gradually – one hour of direct light/direct sunlight for a fiddle leaf per day in the first week, two hours in the second week. Follow this pattern until your plant is ready to enjoy full sun all day long.

What Are The Best Grow Lights For a Fiddle Leaf Fig?

The best grow lights for Fiddle Leaf Figs are those that fit your plant’s size, its light requirements, and eventually your budget. Design is also an important factor as grow lights also serve as home decor. For smaller plants (under 3 feet) the best grow light is Sansi 15W Grow Light. For large plants (plants over 3 feet tall), consider Rousseau Grow Light (use MRHOUSE15 for 15% off) or Sansi 36W Grow Light.

Yours Truly,



  1. Kayla October 11, 2022 at 2:30 pm - Reply

    What about fluorescent lighting in an office? Would that work well?

    • MrHouseplant October 12, 2022 at 10:07 pm - Reply

      Office lighting is in most cases too far away and too weak to make a difference for fiddle leaf figs.

  2. Lupe August 7, 2023 at 11:37 pm - Reply

    Can I put plant outside?

    • MrHouseplant August 8, 2023 at 12:59 am - Reply

      Hi Lupe, yes, you can put the plant outside. Make sure to either put it in a shaded area, or if you’re exposing it to direct sun, acclimate it gradually 🙂

  3. Joseph Romano August 20, 2023 at 6:08 pm - Reply

    If I am using the Rousseau light at a distance of 12 inches, do I need to acclimate it? How many hours a day?

    • MrHouseplant August 23, 2023 at 9:28 am - Reply

      Hi Joseph, if your plant was getting a lot of direct sun, you wouldn’t need to acclimate it. If it wasn’t getting a lot of direct sun, yes, you need to acclimate it. All plants can get damaged when exposed to too much direct sun, or too much of the equivalent of direct sun (such as with a grow light), if not acclimated gradually. Either start with a larger distance, or with a smaller number of hours, until you get to 16 hours per day. Increase by a few hours every week until you get to 16 hours per day 🙂

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