Port Jackson fig
Moraceae (fig) family
Where is it originally from?
New South Wales, Australia
What does it look like?
Evergreen small to very large tree, often beginning life as an epiphyte. Young stems are finely hairy and become hairless as they mature. Narrow-oval, leathery leaves (6-12 cm long) are shiny and hairless above and densely fine hairy and pinkish-brown below. Small, round, green flowers with rusty hairs develop into deep yellow to dull red fruit (12-20 mm long) with no stalks.
Are there any similar species?
Moreton Bay fig (F. macrophylla) is very similar, but has leaves to 25 cm long and 20-40 mm long purple fruits on short stalks.
Why is it weedy?
Long-lived tree that dominates canopy and produces many seeds that are pollinated by a species of wasp and are widely dispersed. Tolerates damp to dry, full shade, all soil types, and hot to moderately warm temperatures.
How does it spread?
Birds spread seed from gardens, parks, forests, and rocky areas.
What damage does it do?
Becomes the canopy, spreads widely, and prevents growth and establishment of seedlings of almost all other species.
Which habitats is it likely to invade?
All forest types in warmer areas, and coastal areas.
What can I do to get rid of it?
Can be difficult to detect if growing in high canopy.
1. Pull out small plants (all year round). Leave on site to rot down.
2. Cut down and paint stump (all year round): metsulfuron-methyl 600g/kg (2g/L). Leave on site to rot down. Can use on trunks and on aerial roots.
3. Bore and fill (all year round): Make 1 hole every 100 mm around the trunk and aerial roots and put 2g metsulfuron-methyl 600g/kg into each hole.
What can I do to stop it coming back?
Cut stumps and roots resprout.