Rubber tree - Ficus elastica

The Rubber tree (Ficus elastica) is one of the "figs" that is popular as an indoor potted tree. In the right growing conditions however it can grow to become a large tree. I have seen this tree reach heights of 20 meters with a broad spread.
The fruits of the Ficus elastica are small, measuring only 1-1.5 cm in length. The leaves however are large and showy. They are tough leaves with a shiny dark green color. I´ve seen some of these trees with such a dark green color almost reaching a dark purple green (see below).

The image above was taken in the town of "Rincon de la Victoria" east of Malaga in Southern Spain.
I took the picture below while waiting for a bus in central Malaga. As I waited I noticed the roots that this tree was dropping down from is lower branches. When these roots reach the ground they become additional trunks that help support the weight of the large branches.

7 comments:

  1. Is that water in the picture behind the last photo? These trees love water...they are invasive as far as getting into your sewer lines...I had to take one out for that very reason...althoguh they are beautiful!

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  2. There is a busy avenue behind the bottom picture called "Avenida de Andalucia". This picture was taken in the proximity of the "Jardines de Picaso" in Malaga.

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  3. the photos are beautiful and ficus is wonderful

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  4. Walt - Lake Placid, FloridaAugust 1, 2010 at 9:22 PM

    I love the ficus genus, with more than 800 species! I'm growing two varieties of Ficus elastica. I also have F.lyrata, F. alii, F.microcarpa, F. benjamina, and F. altissima 'variegata'. I've tried over and over again, with no success, to root cuttings from local Ficus benghalensis trees. For some reason I just can't get the cuttings to take. I've made soft wood, hard wood, and in between using rooting harmone, making the cuttings in late spring when air temperatures are warm. I purchased Ficus benghalensis seeds, sowed them, to no avail; not one came up. But I shall keep on trying.

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  5. I just received a cutting of this plant. I'm doing the same thing as Walt..using rooting hormone. Here in the Keys almost everything will grow using that method. Hmmm..hope it works :/ Beautiful pictures! Thanx for sharing!

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  6. I have a large one in my office and we've recently changed the location of our office. I can't explain the reason; but the tree was purple in the old location and is now most definitely green! Beautiful!

    The Rubber Tree faces in the same direction but now gets a bit less sun than before. Can anyone explain the transformation? Thanks!

    BTW: Beautiful pictures and useful facts! Thanks!

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  7. From purple to green! I´ve seen both of these colors on diferent trees but I did not know they could undergo such a color change.

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