Ficus involuta (Liebm.) Miq.
Ficus proctor-cooperi Standl.
Urostigma involutum Liebm.
Ficus obtusifolia ranges in size from a small to a large tree with a broad crown; it usually grows 8 - 25 metres tall, with occasional specimens as much as 45 metres tall. The bole of larger trees can be 180cm in diameter[
The edible fruit is sometimes gathered from the wild for local use[
S. America - Bolivia and Brazil, north through Central America to Mexico.
Lowland forest formation from sea level to elevations of 1,000 metres, in both very wet areas and in seasonally very dry areas[
A plant of the lowland tropics, where it is able to thrive both in all year round wet areas and in seasonally very dry areas[
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[
]. The globose fruits are 16 - 20mm in diameter, 12 - 16mm long[
The latex is used in a plaster to ease pain in the abdomen[
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