What is the plant
Ficus lutea is a tree in the family Moraceae. It is commonly known as the giant-leaved fig or Lagos rubbertree. These trees occur from the Eastern Cape of South Africa to Tropical Africa.
Ficus lutea is a large, briefly-deciduous tree, capable of growing to 25 m in height. Its large, spreading crown can span 30 to 45 m in width. This spreading habit coupled with an often short and buttressed trunk can help in revealing the tree's identity from a distance. Under forest conditions, however, it tends towards a taller growth habit with a somewhat narrower spread. The species also has the ability to become a strangler and is often encountered assuming this habit.The bark is relatively smooth-textured and dark grey to brown in colour. Branches may be finely hairy when young, becoming smooth with age. The lovely smooth, glossy leaves are very large in size, as the common name would suggest, and are quite distinctive, ranging from 130 to 430 mm in length and up to 200 mm in width. They are held towards the ends of the branches, are ovate to elliptic or obovate, and exhibit clear yellow veining. The attractive bronze stipules effectively sheath the terminal buds. The leaf margins are entire and the stout leaf stalks measure from 25 to 150 mm in length.
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