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Useful Tropical Plants

Ficus variifolia

Warb.

Moraceae


This species is very close to Ficus dicranostyla, but the upper surface of the leaves is smooth[
328
Title
African Flowering Plants Database
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.ville-ge.ch/musinfo/bd/cjb/africa/recherche.php
Publisher
Conservatoire et Jardin Botaniques.
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
Contains information on over 150,000 plant names (including synonyms) giving a description and habitat, plus a distribution map.
].

+ Synonyms

Ficus bongouanensis A.Chev.

Ficus bougouanouensis A.Chev.

Ficus inopinata Mildbr.

Ficus sciarophylla Warb.

Ficus zenkeri Warb. ex Mildbr. & Burret

Common Name:

Ficus variifolia

General Information

Ficus variifolia can be a shrub or a tree with a spreading crown; it can grow from 10 - 35 metres tall. The straight, cylindrical bole can be free of branches for threequarters of its height; it is around 100cm in diameter and has stout, plank buttresses[
328
Title
African Flowering Plants Database
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.ville-ge.ch/musinfo/bd/cjb/africa/recherche.php
Publisher
Conservatoire et Jardin Botaniques.
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
Contains information on over 150,000 plant names (including synonyms) giving a description and habitat, plus a distribution map.
].
The tree is sometimes harvested from the wild as a local source of wood and fibre. It can be used as a pioneer when restoring native woodland and in Tanzania it is commonly used to provide shade and grave marks[
299
Title
Protabase - Plant Resources of Tropical Africa.
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.prota.org
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
An excellent on-line database with detailed information on over 3,200 species of useful plants of Africa.
].

Known Hazards

None known

Botanical References


Range

Tropical Africa - Guinea to southern Sudan, south to northern Angola, DR Congo and Tanzania.

Habitat

Pioneer of cleared areas; forest gallery; northern edges of half-deciduous forests; grass savannah; drier types of closed forest; clayey soil in rain-forest; old secondary forest; at elevations from 300 - 1,200 metres[
299
Title
Protabase - Plant Resources of Tropical Africa.
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.prota.org
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
An excellent on-line database with detailed information on over 3,200 species of useful plants of Africa.
].

Properties

Other Uses Rating *  *
HabitTree
Height20.00 m
PollinatorsWasps
Cultivation StatusOrnamental, Wild

Cultivation Details



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[
413
Title
Global Invasive Species Database
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.issg.org/database/welcome/
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
Very detailed information on almost 400 species (with more being added) of plants that have become weeds in areas outside their native range.
].

Edible Uses

None known

Medicinal

None known

Agroforestry Uses:

A natural pioneer species[
364
Title
Field Guide to the Moist Forest Trees of Tanzania.
Publication
 
Author
Lovett J.C.; Ruffo C.K.; Gereau R.E.; Taplin J.R.D
Website
http://www.york.ac.uk/res/celp/webpages/projects/ecology/tree%20guide/introduction.htm
Publisher
Frontier
Year
0
ISBN
1-873070-33-0
Description
A lovely little book giving a basic identification guide to more than 650 species of trees growing in Tanzania. It is also available to view on the internet.
], it can be used in the first stage of planting when restoring native woodland[
K
Title
Plants for a Future
Author
Ken Fern
Description
Notes from observations, tasting etc at Plants For A Future and on field trips.
].

Other Uses

The fibrous inner bark is made into a reddish barkcloth[
299
Title
Protabase - Plant Resources of Tropical Africa.
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.prota.org
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
An excellent on-line database with detailed information on over 3,200 species of useful plants of Africa.
].

The heartwood is whitish yellow or pale yellowish brown, sometimes slightly pinkish; it is not clearly demarcated from the sapwood. The grain is straight, texture coarse and even. Latex is present in the wood. The wood is light in weight, soft and not durable, being susceptible to attack by fungi and marine borers, although moderately resistant to attack by termites and pinhole borers. It saws easily and rapidly; planes well, but the finish is not first-class; it may split on nailing, but it peels, slices and glues well, producing a good plywood. The wood is locally used for carving. It is also considered suitable for joinery, light carpentry, ship and boat building, agricultural implements, toys and novelties, boxes and crates, matches, plywood, hardboard and particle board[
299
Title
Protabase - Plant Resources of Tropical Africa.
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.prota.org
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
An excellent on-line database with detailed information on over 3,200 species of useful plants of Africa.
].

Propagation

Seed -
Cite as: Tropical Plants Database, Ken Fern. tropical.theferns.info. 2021-02-25. <tropical.theferns.info/viewtropical.php?id=Ficus+variifolia>

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