ficus-hispida-kew-june-2015-img_0652
Ficus hispida is a small tree, widespread in secondary forest from India south to N. Australia. In Borneo F. hispida is confined to seasonally dry forest in south and east Borneo where it may have been introduced.  The individual photographed in this article was photographed in the Princess of Wales Conservatory in the Royal Botanic Gardens at Kew in London, U.K.
ficus-hispida-img_0657
Ficus hispida is the only fig in Borneo in which the leaves grow opposite each other. All the other Bornean figs NEVER have opposite leaves- a very useful distinguishing feature. Note that the leaf pairs grow at right angles to the leaf pairs above and below on the same twig.
ficus-hispida-img_0654
Ficus hispida stipule. All parts of this fig tree, the fig fruits, the branches and the leaves are covered in hairs which leads to the common name of Rough Leaf Fig.
ficus-hispida-img_0884
Ficus hispida, under surface of the leaves.
fixcus-hispida-img_0659
Ficus hispida at Kew Gardens. Notice the waxy gland at the junction of the leaf blade (lamina) and leaf stalk (petiole). This gland produces  food for ants which encourages ants to visit the leaf and protect the plant from leaf eating insects such as butterfly and moth caterpillars.
ficus-hispida-img_0889
The fig fruit grow on “branchlets” which hang off the trunk often in long strings. These branchlets are growing at ground level.