Ficus subulata growing at the BORA rhino orchard at Tabin in Sabah. Ficus subulata (in Section Sycidium ) is frequently mistaken for a Section Conosycea strangler. Look for these differences;
- F. subulata grows as a relatively small understorey epiphyte never as a strangler.
- F. subulata leaves are larger thinner and more papery than most strangler leaves.
- F. subulata leaf veins are often slightly sunken (corrugated) above whereas this is rare in stranglers. F. forstenii , F. kochummeniana and F. annulata are strangler exceptions.
- F. subulata often has an auricle or small ear on one side of the leaf base. This is common in several Section Sycidium figs but never occurs in Section Conosycea stranglers.
- The stipule is long and needle like ,often colored reddish green. This is very similar to the stipule of Ficus dubia. However the leaf of Ficus dubia is symmetrical and never has an auricle or “ear” on one side of the base.
Photos by Mike Bernadus with thanks to Miyabi Nakabayashi