ABOVE: Illustration from King (1888) based on Forbes (1880) collection in Sumatra illustrated below. The type is from Singapore.
BRACT FIG Ficus bracteata Wall. Ex Miq. Miq. (1867) SECTION: CONOSYCEA
Latin: Refers to the fact that the terminal branches have distinctive persistent stipules (bracts).
Habit: Large woody liana or small tree to 15m. Very rare. The few Bornean records are from either peat-swamp forest or rocky ridge forest on the west coast of Borneo. Obviously prefers poor soils.
Leaf: Large 14-33 cm by 6-17 cm. Smooth above and with prominent sunken veins. The veins of the under surface of the leaf are also very prominent. The basal pair are very distinct with up to 3 pairs of minor side veins below and 4 to 6 obvious side veins above.
Fig: 1.8-2.5 cm. Has a very distinctive sunken ostiole which is also true of F. retusa. Berg (2005) says this fig ripens green to yellow to orange to red.
(1) Ficus consociata is similar with (a) Extensive hairs on the leaves, twigs and fig fruit and (b) Occasionally persistent stipules but the basal veins are straighter and longer. with F. consociata (4-7).
(2) Ficus annulata. Some varieties of Ficus annulata have persistent stipules and hairy figs. F. annulata leaves always have 12 or more side veins whereas F. bracteata leaves always have less than 12 side veins.
(3) Ficus paracamptophylla is a very similar rare fig found in peat swamp forest with persistent bracts on the terminal branches but the leaf is flat above without sunken (impressed) side veins.
(4) There is a strong possibility that Ficus bracteata is the juvenile form of Ficus cucurbitina but this needs further confirmation.
Distribution: Scattered records from coastal forest in west Borneo.
Sabah: The collections for Bongawan and Sipitang (both West Sabah) in NATURALIS. are most likely to be F. consociata. F. bracteata is not listed in the Tree Flora of Sabah and Sarawak by Kochummen (2000)
Brunei: Not listed by Coode (1996) for Brunei.
Sarawak: The records for Bukit Lima (Sibu) and Padawan Hotsprings near Kuching most likely refer to Ficus consociata. Not listed by Anderson for Sarawak (1980. One record for Lambir. See Harrison 2003.
Kalimantan: Sambas (N. West Kalimantan). Not recorded for Gunung Palung by Laman and Weiblen. Singapore Herbarium has no Borneo collections and neither has Kew.
Range: Vietnam, Thailand , Philippines, Java, Sumatra and Borneo. The type is from Singapore. Many herbarium collections from the Malay Peninsula and S. Thailand are either F. kochummeniana or F. consociata.
Collected in Sumatra by Forbes in 1880. Collection from NATURALIS Leiden