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  Ficus grossularioides Burm.f
  Family Name : Moraceae

  Synonyms : Ficus alba

  Common Names : Ara putih, White-leafed Fig

  Chinese Name : 白叶榕

Ara putih,White-leafed Fig
  • Record Info
  • Life Stage & Characteristics
    • Plant Division :
      Angiosperms (Flowering Seed Plants) (Dicotyledon)
      Plant Growth Form :
      Tree (Small (6m-15m)), Shrub (Woody)
      Lifespan (in Singapore) :
      Mode of Nutrition :
      Plant Shape :
  • Biogeography
    • Native Distribution :
      Thailand, Sumatra, Peninsular Malaysia, Singapore, Borneo, and Java
      Native Habitat :
      Terrestrial (Primary Rainforest; Secondary Rainforest; Freshwater Swamp Forest; Grassland / Savannah/ Scrubland; Disturbed Area / Open Ground)
      Preferred Climate Zone :
      Local Conservation Status :
      Native to Singapore (Common)
  • Description & Ethnobotany
    • Plant Morphology :
      Growth Form: It is a latex-containing shrub or tree up to 15 m tall.
      Foliage: Its spirally arranged, stalked leaves have partially leathery to papery leaf blades that are somewhat rough and hairy above, white and covered with fine hair below, oval to heart-shaped or at times 3–7-lobed, 3–35 by 1.5–30 cm, and with margins that are entire, or distinctly toothed.
      Flowers: The plant is dioecious with each plant bearing male or female flowers. The flowers are tiny and develop within the syconium (fig).
      Fruits: Its syconia (figs) are somewhat round to ellipsoid, covered with soft, fine hair when fresh, yellow to orange to brownish to red when mature, 0.6–1.5 cm across, and occur in pairs on the bare portions of twigs behind the leaves or at the leaf axils.
      Habitat :
      It grows in primary and secondary lowland forests, forest edges, and along streams up to 1,350 m altitude. It occurs locally in Pulau Ubin, Pulau Tekong, in the vicinity of Upper Seletar Reservoir, Nee Soon Swamp Forest, Old Upper Thomson Road, and Lazarus Island.
      Associated Fauna :
      Its flowers are pollinated by fig-wasps. Birds, such as the yellow-vented bulbul (Pycnonotus goiavier), eat its ripe syconia (figs). It is also the preferred local food plant for caterpillars of the butterfly, striped blue crow (Euploea mulciber).
      Cultivation :
      It can be propagated by seed, stem cutting or air-layering.
      Etymology :
      Latin Ficus, the commercial edible fig (Ficus carica); Latin grossularioides, like a gooseberry, referring to the superficial resemblance of the syconia (figs) to gooseberries
      Ethnobotanical Uses :
      Edible Plant Parts (Edible Leaves; Edible Stems)
      Medicinal (Its young shoots are edible. A decoction of the leaves is used to treat kidney ailments.)
  • Landscaping Features
    • Landscaping :
      Its syconia (figs) attract birds when ripe. It has attractive leaves that are white below. It may be suitable for roadsides or gardens.
      Desirable Plant Features :
      Ornamental Foliage, Ornamental Fruits
      Plant & Rootzone Preference/Tolerance :
      Moist Soils, Well-Drained Soils
      Landscape Uses :
      General, Roadside Tree / Palm, Parks & Gardens, Small Gardens
  • Fauna, Pollination & Dispersal
    • Associated Fauna :
      Bird-Attracting, Caterpillar Food Plant, Caterpillar (Moth) Food Plant, Bat Food
      Pollination Method(s) :
      Biotic (Fauna)
      Seed / Spore Dispersal :
      Biotic (Fauna) (Vertebrates (Bat); Vertebrates (Other Mammal))
  • Plant Care & Propagation
    • Light Preference :
      Full Sun, Semi-Shade
      Water Preference :
      Moderate Water
      Plant Growth Rate :
      Propagation Method :
      Seed, Stem Cutting
  • Foliar
    • Foliage Retention :
      Mature Foliage Colour(s) :
      Green, White
      Mature Foliage Texture(s) :
      Papery, Leathery
      Foliar Type :
      Simple / Unifoliate
      Foliar Arrangement Along Stem :
      Foliar Attachment to Stem :
      Foliar Shape(s) :
      Non-Palm Foliage (Ovate; Palmate)
      Foliar Venation :
      Pinnate / Net
      Foliar Margin :
      Entire, Serrate / Toothed
      Foliar Apex / Tip :
      Foliar Base :
      Acute, Rounded / Obtuse
      Leaf Area Index (LAI) * for Green Plot Ratio :
      3.0 (Tree - Intermediate Canopy)
The information given on this website has been compiled from reference works on medicinal plants and/or pron only. It is not a substitute for medical advice or treatment and NParks does not purport to provide any medical advice. Reliance on this information is strictly at your own risk. You should always consult your physician before using or consuming a plant for medicinal purposes.

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