Ficus elastica From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia Jump to: navigation, search "Rubber bush" redirects here. For the auto part, see rubber bushing. Ficus elastica

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Ficus elastica

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Jump to: navigation, search

"Rubber bush" redirects here. For the auto part, see rubber bushing.

Ficus elastica

Scientific classification


















F. elastica

Binomial name

Ficus elastica

Ficus elastica, also called the rubber fig, rubber bush, rubber plant, or Indian rubber bush is a species of plant in the fig genus, native to northeast India (Assam), south to Indonesia (Sumatra and Java).

It is a fat bush in the banyan group of figs, growing to 30–40 metres (98–130 ft) (rarely up to 60 metres/200 feet) tall, with a stout trunk up to 2 metres (6.6 ft) diameter. The trunk develops aerial and buttressing roots to anchor it in the soil and help support heavy branches. It has broad shiny oval leaves 10–35 centimetres (3.9–14 in) long and 5–15 centimetres (2.0–5.9 in) broad; leaf size is largest on young plants (occasionally to 45 centimetres/18 inches long), much smaller on old trees (typically 10 centimetres/3.9 inches long). The leaves develop inside a sheath at the apical meristem, which grows larger as the new leaf develops. When it is mature, it unfurls and the sheath drops off the plant. Inside the new leaf, another immature leaf is waiting to develop.

As with other members of the genus Ficus, the flowers require a particular species of fig wasp to pollinate it in a co-evolved relationship. Because of this relationship, the rubber plant does not produce highly colourful or fragrant flowers to attract other pollinators. The fruit is a small yellow-green oval fig 1 centimetre (0.39 in) long, barely edible; it will only contain viable seed where the relevant fig wasp species is present.

In part of India, humans guide the roots of the tree over chasms to eventually form living bridges[1].

General aspect and origins - Ficus elastica, also known as the rubber tree or the rubber plant, is an evergreen tree which is native to tropical zones of Asia, especially to India and Malaysia. This tree can reach up to 100 ft, and even 150 ft, (30 - 50 m) and forms aerial roots.
Leaves - The rubber tree has evergreen glossy leaves that can be 12 in (30 cm) long. The young leaves are pinkish, then turn deep green with age.
Flowers - The flowers bloom inside the figs.
Fruits - The rubber tree bears figs, as does the fig tree (Ficus carica) which is a close relative. However, the rubber tree bears inedible figs. They are green, and half an inch wide.


The rubber tree is widely used as a house plant, as it can grow in moderately luminous environments. Indoors, the rubber plant may reach more than 10 ft (3 m) high. Outside, this Ficus may be grown in very mild to warm areas. (USDA zones 10 and warmer). However, a well-established tree may withstand a few degrees of frost, about 30°F to 26°F (-1°C to -3°C), depending on the weather conditions and the age of the tree.

The rubber tree white sticky sap is moderately toxic.
Soil - The rubber tree needs a well-drained and fertile ground.


The rubber tree can be propagated by seeds, cuttings or air layering. When propagating a cultivar, cuttings or air layering will be the best choice.

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