Weeping Fig
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Weeping Fig
ative Photo: Dinesh Valke
Common name: Weeping Fig, benjamin tree, golden fig, Java fig, tropic-laurel, Chinese banyan • Hindi: पुकर pukar • Kannada: ಜಾವಾಅತ್ತಿ Java atthi, ಜೀವಿ Jeevi • Marathi: नांदरूक nandaruk, नांदरूख nandarukh • Mizo: Zamanhmawng • Nepali: समी Sami, स्वामी Swami • Tamil: நீண்டமரவகை nintamaravakai, வெள்ளால் vellal • Malayalam: putra juvi • Telugu: Konda golugu, konda zuvvi, పెద్దాzఉవ్వీ pedda zuvvi, putra zuvvi • Sanskrit: banij, mandara
Botanical name: Ficus benjamina    Family: Moraceae (Mulberry family)

The Weeping Fig is an evergreen tree, reaching 30 m tall in natural conditions, with gracefully drooping branchlets and glossy leaves 6-13 cm long, oval with a pointed tip. In its native range, its small fruit are a favorite food of some birds. It is a very popular house plant, due to its elegant growth and tolerance of poor growing conditions; it does best under bright, sunny conditions but will also tolerate considerable shade. It requires a moderate amount of watering in summer, and only enough to keep it from drying out in the winter. It does not need to be misted. The plant is sensitive to cold and should be protected from strong drafts. When grown indoors, it can grow too large for its situation, and may need drastic pruning or replacing. The leaves are very sensitive to small changes in light. When it is re-located it reacts by dropping many of its leaves and replacing them with new leaves adapted to the new light intensity. Weeping Fig has many varieties like Ficus benjamina var. nuda and Ficus benjamina var. comosa. Weeping Fig is native to south and southeast Asia, also found in East Himalaya.

Identification credit: Ajinkya Gadave, Ventsislav Photographed at Hiranandani Gardens, Powai, Mumbai.

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