Characteristics of Dye Fig Tree (Ficus tinctoria) in the Wild

Ficus tinctoria
Dye fig or Humped fig (Ficus tinctoria) is a hemiepiphytic tree of the genus Ficus. It is one of the species known as the strangler fig.

Dye figs are found in Asia, Malesia, northern Australia, and the South Pacific islands.

In Australia, the Dye fig is recorded as a medium-sized tree that is often found growing in rocky areas or on large boulders.

 

Characteristics of Dye Fig Leaf

Ficus tinctoria Leaf
Source: inaturalist.org/iwencheng

Leaves are green, oval, smooth, and asymmetrical.

 

Characteristics of Dye Fig

Ficus tinctoria Fruit
Source: inaturalist.org/leaf0605

Green or yellow figs turn orange to dull red and finally purple, up to 17 mm in diameter. Ripe fruit is processed or cooked in many ways to produce food in some Pacific Islands.

 

Characteristics of Dye Fig Tree

Ficus tinctoria Tree
Source: inaturalist.org/leaf0605

Dye fig can grow up to 4-6 meters tall with a dense crown and loose. The roots are very strong, and if planted in urban areas, they can damage everything around them including foundations, concrete, and asphalt.

Dye fig bark fibers can be made into rope. Red dye is also obtained from fruit juice in combination with subcordata Cordia juice, a red dye from its roots or sap. They are used to dye cloth in parts of Oceania and Indonesia.

 

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