Ficus Ovata: General Information

The Ficus ovata, also known as the Oval-leaved Fig or simply the Ficus, is a species of fig that is native to parts of Asia and Australia. It is a large tree that can reach heights of up to 60 feet tall and has a wide distribution range. The Ficus ovata is an important food source for many animals and is also cultivated for its fruit and timber. In this article, we will provide a general overview of the Ficus ovata, including its botanical references, range, habitat, cultivation details, edible uses, and more!

Plant Specifics

Origins: Ficus ovata is native to Mexico, Central America, and the Caribbean (i.e. Costa Rica, Cuba, Dominican Republic, Guatemala, Haiti, Honduras, Jamaica).

Stem: The tree has a short trunk with smooth, grey bark that is marked with horizontal lenticels (i.e. raised corky areas). The branches are thick and spreading, often growing horizontally before drooping downwards.

Botanical References: The Ficus ovata belongs to the Moraceae (or Mulberry) family.

Range: The Ficus ovata is found throughout Mexico, Central America, and the Caribbean. In Mexico, it is found in the states of Chiapas, Guerrero, Oaxaca, Veracruz, and Puebla.

Height: The Ficus ovata can grow to be 30-60 feet (or ~15 meters) tall.

Leaves: The leaves of the Ficus ovata are simple, alternate, and oblong-shaped. They are dark green in color with a glossy surface. The leaf margins are entire (i.e. they lack teeth).

Flowers: The flowers of the Ficus ovata are small, white, and borne in axillary clusters (i.e. they grow in the leaf axils).

Fruit: The fruit of the Ficus ovata is a small, fleshy drupe that is green when immature and turns yellow or orange when ripe.

Edible Uses: The fruit of the Ficus ovata is edible and can be eaten fresh or made into jams and jellies. The leaves can also be cooked and used as greens.

Cultivation Details: The Ficus ovata prefers full sun to partial shade and well-drained soil. It is tolerant of a wide range of soil types but does not do well in poorly drained soils. The Ficus ovata is drought tolerant once established.