The Ficus asperifolia, also known as the ‘guardian fig’ is a unique species of the fig tree that is found in certain parts of Africa. It has many interesting features and benefits, which we will discuss in this blog post. This tree is highly drought tolerant and can withstand harsh conditions that other plants cannot. It is also resistant to pests and diseases, making it a valuable addition to any garden.
Origins: It is native to Malesia
Life Span: The average lifespan is around 100 years.
Growing Climate: It is found in the understory of lowland rainforests
Soils: It prefers fertile, well-drained soils
Form: It is an evergreen tree that can grow between 65-98 ft in height, often with buttress roots
Height: It grows to 98 ft in height
Width: Canopy widths of up to 98 ft have been recorded
Bark: The thin bark is light grey to brown and smooth with a few small lenticels. The inner bark is reddish
Leaves: Alternate, simple, entire or lobed, leathery, glossy dark green above and paler beneath, variable in shape but mostly oblong to oval with a pointed apex and base.
Flowers: The small white flowers are borne on a short stalk in the leaf axils. They are unisexual with male and female flowers usually on different trees.
Fruit: The fruit is a small, fleshy, red berry.
Cultivation: It is easily grown from seed which germinates readily.
Uses: The fruit is eaten by birds and mammals. The leaves are used as fodder for livestock. The tree is also grown as an ornamental plant.
The wood is used in construction, furniture making and carving. It is also used to make charcoal.