South-Indian Fig
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South-Indian Fig
P Native Photo: Varun Sharma
Common name: South-Indian Fig • Malayalam: Chela, Thavittaal
Botanical name: Ficus beddomei    Family: Moraceae (Mulberry family)
Synonyms: Ficus rama-varmae

South-Indian Fig is a large tree, beginning as tree-dwelling later become strangler and independent, up to 25 m tall. Bark is pale brown to yellowish, smooth; blaze cream. Branchlets are stout, round, hairless, with annular scars, latex white, profuse. Leaves are simple, alternate, spiral; stipules to 3.5 cm long, lanceshaped, hairless, falling off leaving annular scars. Leaf-stalks are stout, 2.5-4 cm long, channeled, hairless; blade 10-25 x 5-15 cm, ovate, tip tapering, base rounded to almost flat, margin slightly wavy, thickly leathery, hairless, drying brown; midrib flat above; secondary nerves 12-15 pairs, looping near margin; tertiary_nerves broadly netveined. Figs are borne in leaf-axils pairs, ovoid or obovoid, hairless; flower-cluster-stalk 1.5-2 cm long. Fig is up to 2.5 cm across, green, spotted with yellow when ripe, stalk stout; achenes, obovoid, smooth. South-Indian Fig is endemic to the Western Ghats and Madhya Pradesh.

Identification credit: Varun Sharma Photographed in Coorg, Karnataka.

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