WUNUT Ficus subcordata Blume (1825) SECTION: CONOSYCEAE
Latin: Similar to Ficus cordata a synonym for Ficus elastica from the similarity of the leaves. In the USA known as Fairchild’s Fig.
Habit: One of the most common large figs in the more seasonal areas of SE Asia and the Pacific Islands east to the Solomon Islands. In the Lesser Sunda Islands of Indonesia frequently grown as fence posts, with the leaves regularly pruned for cattle fodder.
In the wet forests of Borneo an uncommon hemi-epiphyte. At Lambir Hills, Harrison et al (2003) described the characteristic growth habits of 9 individuals as being very large hemi-epiphytes in the crown of 30m + tall emergent trees. i.e. not stranglers with multiple roots enclosing the trunk of the host tree but canopy epiphytes with normally one of two aerial roots reaching the ground.
Leaves: Medium size thick oblong leaves 9-20 cm long by 4-10cm wide with a light green petiole (leaf stalk) up to 5cm long. The leaves resemble small Ficus elastica leaves, or large Ficus benjamina leaves with multiple rows of indistinct parallel veins.
Fig: The large oblong figs to 3.5 cm ripen green to yellow to orange and black.
Similar species: The leaves of F.callophylla may be confused. However Ficus callophylla leaves are thicker with fewer more clearly defined side veins. Both species have pale, smooth, bark. The main difference is in the size of the figs. F. callophyla have small figs which ripen pink. F. subcordata have very large figs which ripen orange.
Distinguish: By the shape and size of the leaf combined with the very large figs.
Distribution:Widespread but scarce in lowland forests throughout Borneo.
Brunei: An individual fruits regularly next to the Belalong Canopy Walkway in Temburong attracting Bushy-crested, Rhinoceros and Helmeted Hornbills to feed as well as the local gibbon family.
Sarawak: At Lambir the 7th most common hemi-epiphytic fig in the 2 Smithsonian plots totalling 60 ha with 5 individuals present in 1998 and 4 individuals present in 2005. The missing individual was lost in a tree fall. Harrison (2006).
Kalimantan: Locally common in South and East Kalimantan.
Range: Vietnam south to Sumatra and east to New Guinea and the Solomon Islands.