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Ficus microcarpa Linnaeus

(Malay Banyan)

(Life; Embryophyta (plants); Angiospermae (flowering plants); Eudicotyledons; Order: Rosales; Family: Moraceae; Genus: Ficus; Subgenus: Urostigma; Section: Urostigma; Subsection: Conosycea)



Planted tree Cape Town, South Africa. Photographs © Simon van Noort (Iziko South African Museum).


Planted tree Piekenierskloof pass, Citrusdal, South Africa. Photographs © Simon van Noort (Iziko South African Museum).


Pollinator: Eupristina verticillata.

Eupristina verticillata Waterston,1921

A few of the more than 30 non-pollinating fig wasps associated with F. microcarpa:

Odontofroggatia corneri Wiebes,1980

Odontofroggatia galili Wiebes,1980

Walkerella microcarpae Bouček,1993


Strangler in tropical forest; or rock-splitter on cliff faces; also coastal habitats.


China (southern), Christmas island (Pacific), India, Malaysia, New Guinea, Sri Lanka, South-east Asia. Introduced to many tropical and temperate areas of the world as a roadside tree or garden ornamental: Australia; Bermuda; Brazil (Sao Paulo); Canary Islands; El Salvador; Hawaii; Honduras; Italy (Sicily); Japan; Madeira; Malaysia (Sarawak); Mexico; Puerto Rico; Solomon Islands; South Africa, Tunisia; Turkey; United Arab Emirates; United States of America (California, Florida).


Strangler or lithophyte (free-standing tree under cultivation) reaching 22m in height.


Berg, C.C.  & Corner, E.J.H. 2005. Moraceae - Ficus. Flora Malesiana Series I (Seed Plants) Volume 17/Part 2. National Herbarium of the Netherlands, Leiden.

Burrows, J. & Burrows, S. 2003. Figs of southern & south-central Africa. Umdaus Press, Hatfield. 379 pp.

Corner, E.J.H. 1965. Checklist of Ficus in Asia and Australasia with keys to identification. The Gardens’ Bulletin Singapore 21: 1-186.

van Noort, S. & Rasplus, J.Y. 2010. Order Hymenoptera, Chalcidoidea associated with figs (families Agaonidae & Pteromalidae). In: A. van Harten (ed.) Arthropod fauna of UAE 3, pp 325-355.

van Noort, S., Wang, R. & Compton, S.G. 2013. Fig wasps (Hymenoptera; Chalcidoidea: Agaonidae, Pteromalidae) associated with Asian fig trees (Ficus, Moraceae) in Southern Africa: Asian followers and African colonistsAfrican Invertebrates 54: 381–400.

Wang R, Aylwin R, Barwell L, Chen X-Y, Chen Y, Chou L-S, Cobb J, Collette D, Craine L, Giblin-Davis RM, Ghana S, Harper M, Harrison RD, McPherson JR, Peng YQ, Pereira RAS, Reyes-Betancort A, Rodriguez LJV, Strange E, van Noort S, Yang H-W, Yu H, Compton SG. 2015. The fig wasp followers and colonists of a widely introduced fig tree, Ficus microcarpa. Insect Conservation and Diversity doi: 10.1111/icad.12111


Photographs © Simon van Noort (Iziko South African Museum).

Web authors Simon van Noort (Iziko South African Museum)

and Jean-Yves Rasplus (INRA, France)


Citation: van Noort, S. & Rasplus, JY. 2023. Figweb: figs and fig wasps of the world. URL: www.figweb.org(Accessed on <day-month-year>).

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