Ficus benjamina L.
Synonym : Ficus parvifolia Oken.
Family : Moraceae
Local Names : Vellaaal, Golden fig, Benjamin Tree, Java fig
Flowering and fruiting period: July – December
Distribution: India and South China to Solomon Islands
Habitat: Planted as ornamental tree
IUCN status: Data Deficient
Uses: Ornamental, Anti-rheumatic, tannin source. The bark of the root, the root itself, and the leaves are boiled in oil and applied on wounds and bruises. The pounded leaves and bark are applied as a poultice in the treatment of rheumatic headaches. The inner bark is a source of fibre. The bark contains about 4.2% tannins. The wood is of low quality, but is used for temporary constructions, mouldings, interior work, cladding, drawers, small domestic articles, fruit crates etc.
Key Characters: Ficus benjamina are evergreen trees, aerial roots few. Leaves simple, alternate, distichous; lamina elliptic, margin entire.Inflorescence a syconia, axillary, sessile, paired, globose; internal bristles absent; flowers unisexual, of 4 kinds; male flowers: abundant; tepals 3; stamen 1, included; anthers oblong; female flowers: sessile, tepals 3-4; ovary ovate, brownish; style tip curved; gall flowers similar to female flowers but pedicellate. Syconium; orange, rarely pink or dark purple.