GREEN FIG Ficus prasinicarpa SECTION: UROSTIGMA
Greek: Green fruit
Habit: A small crooked untidy tree to 10 m normally growing on rocks or coastal beaches from the Philippines and Sulawesi east to New Guinea and the Solomon islands in the Pacific. The photos above taken on the island of Kakaban off the East coast of Kalimantan are the first Borneo record.
Leaves: The leaves are very variable but typically heart shaped with a pointed drip tip. The petiole (leaf stalk) is articulated which means that the leaves flutter in the sea breeze
Fig: The small round figs 0.4-0.8 cm ripen green to purple and grow both in the leaf axils and ramiflorus along the old wood.
Similar species: Ficus saxophylla grows in similar coastal habitat and is obviously closely related. The distribution overlaps with F. saxophylla along rocky coasts from the Philippines to New Guinea . The figs of F. saxophylla ripen green to red to black. Ficus saxophylla has so far not been recorded for Borneo.
- The figs of F. prasinicarpa have short stalks (peduncles) whilst the figs of F. saxophylla are sessile (no stalks).
- The bracts at the base of the fig fruit are much larger in F. saxophylla (2.5 – 4.5 mm) compared with 1-2 mm for F. prasinicarpa.
Distribution: The only Borneo records to date are from Pulau Kakaban and Pulau Nunukan in the Derawan islands off the coast of East Kalimantan. F. prasinicarpa has obviously been transported from Sulawesi by either fruit bats or imperial pigeons.
Range: See map below: