Ficus pseudopalma is a species of fig known by the common names Philippine fig, dracaena fig, and palm-leaf fig. In nature it is endemic to the Philippines, especially the island of Luzon. It is known elsewhere as an ornamental plant.
This is a shrub growing erect with a naked unbranched stem topped with a cluster of leaves to give it the appearance of a palm. Indeed, the species name pseudopalma means "false palm". The leaves are up to 30 inches long and edged with dull teeth. The fruit is a dark green fig that grows in pairs, each fruit just over an inch long.
In Luzon, this plant occurs in grassland and forest habitat, where it is considered common. The new shoots of the plant are eaten as a type of vegetable, and there are a number of traditional medicinal uses, such as a remedy for kidney stones made from the leaves. In Bicol Region the plant is known as Lubi-lubi and the leaves are cooked in coconut milk. In 2003 the leaves were sold in markets for US$0.74 per kilogram, and the plant can be grown in plantations without pesticides for an adequate profit.
This shrub has been used as a landscaping plant in Hawaii, but it never escaped cultivation or became established in the wild because the species of wasp that pollinates it was never brought to the islands.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Ficus pseudopalma.|
- GRIN Species Profile
- Starr, F., et al. (2003). Ficus pseudopalma Fact Sheet. Hawaiian Ecosystems at Risk.
- Food & Fertilizer Technology Center. (2003). Fruit and vegetables from the tropical forest. FFTC Practical Technology.
- Villegas, K. L. and F. A. Pollisco Jr. (2008). Floral survey of Laiban sub-watershed in the Sierra Madre Mountain Range in the Philippines. Journal of Tropical Biology and Conservation 4(1) 1-14.
- Ragasa, C. Y., et al. (2009). Terpenoids and sterols from the endemic and endangered Philippine trees Ficus pseudopalma and Ficus ulmifolia. Philippine Journal of Science 138(2) 205.
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