Ficus iwahigensis Elmer
Ficus pacifica Elmer
Ficus palawanensis Merr.
Ficus umbobracteata Elmer
Ficus forstenii is an evergreen tree with a large, dense, spreading crown; it can grow up to about 30 metres tall[
]. It often starts life as an epiphyte in the branch of a tree and can eventually send down aerial roots that, once they reach the ground, provide extra nutrients that help the plant grow more vigorously. These aerial roots can completely encircle the trunk of the host tree, constricting its growth - this, coupled with the more vigorous top growth, can lead to the fig outcompeting and killing the tree in which it is growing[
]. As it grows older the tree produces prop roots that grow down from the canopy, supporting it and providing more nutriments that allow the canopy to become wider[
The tree is sometimes harvested from the wild for local use of its fibre.
Southeast Asia - Malaysia, Indonesia, Philippines.
Lowland and submontane forest, at elevations up to 1,200 metres[
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Fig trees have a unique form of fertilization, each species relying on a single, highly specialized species of wasp that is itself totaly dependant upon that fig species in order to breed. The trees produce three types of flower; male, a long-styled female and a short-styled female flower, often called the gall flower. All three types of flower are contained within the structure we usually think of as the fruit.
The female fig wasp enters a fig and lays its eggs on the short styled female flowers while pollinating the long styled female flowers. Wingless male fig wasps emerge first, inseminate the emerging females and then bore exit tunnels out of the fig for the winged females. Females emerge, collect pollen from the male flowers and fly off in search of figs whose female flowers are receptive. In order to support a population of its pollinator, individuals of a Ficus spp. must flower asynchronously. A population must exceed a critical minimum size to ensure that at any time of the year at least some plants have overlap of emmission and reception of fig wasps. Without this temporal overlap the short-lived pollinator wasps will go locally extinct[
This report from [
] was for Ficus forstenii.
The bast is ochraceous salmon. A very weak rope is made from it. King found the rope to have a tensile strength of only 154 kilos per square centimeter. Immersion in water for twenty-four hours increased the strength 44%[
This report from [
] was for Ficus palawanensis, which is considered to be a synonym of F. Forstenii
The bark fibre from this species is stronger than that of any of the other species of Ficus tested by King. The rope made from it is very strong. On account of its great strength, toughness, and durability the fibre is used for making wild-hog traps[
]. The rope was found to have a tensile strength of 752 kilos per square centimeter. Wetting increased the strength[
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