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susan smitten

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Ficus Aurea - the Strangler Fig [Feb. 7th, 2005|01:35 pm]
susan smitten
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I see the "strangler fig" tree in every park I visit in Australia. It doesn't grow from the ground up; rather, a seed dropped high in a host tree by an animal grows into a seedling that sends its roots down the host tree toward the soil. The roots wrap around the host tree as the strangler fig reaches higher, competing with the host for light and eventually blocking out the sun. The host tree dies.


The roots fuse, which creates a pretty cool effect.


It sounds like a menace, doesn't it? It can be, but the tree is so attractive that in Australia, less desirable trees are "replaced" with strangler fig trees, which are perfect for shade or climbing!


I ♥ Strangler Figs

(For more information and neat pictures, try http://waynesword.palomar.edu/ploct99.htm)
linkReply

Comments:
[User Picture]From: beverley_anne
2005-02-07 07:51 am (UTC)
nice photos. maybe u'd like seeing andy goldsworthy's art work from nature. if u can buy the dvd, u'll surely be amazed. ;)
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[User Picture]From: chu_hi
2005-02-07 01:31 pm (UTC)
I followed your link from yesterday and it looks very, very cool! I definitely want to see the documentary now.
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[User Picture]From: joshdavis
2005-02-07 03:35 pm (UTC)
I like how it is sort of buttress-like too.

So when the host dies, does the fig somehow absorb it, or just waits for it to rot, or roots in, or ?
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[User Picture]From: chu_hi
2005-02-09 10:35 am (UTC)
Good question!

It might depend which variety of strangler it is - how aggressive the roots are. That site I linked to mentions something about birds and other wildlife taking up residence in the hollow area, indicating that the host rots away.

Yesterday, Don and I saw one in Dubai!! It had engulfed a date palm tree and part of a chain link fence. It was huuge, and much gnarlier and rootier than the ones in these pictures.
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[User Picture]From: cordot
2005-02-08 12:25 am (UTC)

hello

Hey there,

Random internet stalking freak here… heh, er no not really, though I did stumble across your journal via the friends page of my chum rubine, er so to stretch it I’m kind of a friend of a friend.

Anyway I’m making this ‘vox pop doco film thing’ about what people think the future is (nice and broad huh) and I thought gee this person is both articulate and photogenic (and hopefully a sucker for compliments!) and would be a great subject. Also I think you’ll have a non-Australian accent which will help build my project’s international appeal.

All this is predicated on the idea that you appear to be in Sydney. If this is the case and you’re interested - um, I’m still trying to think what the hell’s in it for you but maybe I’ll come up with something (and of course bring partner/friend if u like) – but leave a note in my LJ, or mail me,or try 0425324652, or just forget it :)

Seizing the day,

cordot,
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[User Picture]From: chu_hi
2005-02-09 10:36 am (UTC)

Re: hello

Wow, what an interesting comment! Your film (thing) sounds really interesting, and so does the prospect of being a part of it.

I'm not in Sidney, unfortunately, although I can arrange to be from time to time.

I'll go leave a comment in your journal...
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[User Picture]From: cordot
2005-02-09 02:08 pm (UTC)

Re: hello

Oh well, whenever you’re in town would be great. It’s a slow burner so no rush, I’ll probably be collecting interviews for quite a while yet. If you do go to my journal don’t confuse this project with the feature drama whose fight to be financed and made is documented there, sometimes in rather gloomy terms.
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[User Picture]From: slfcllednowhere
2005-02-08 04:30 am (UTC)
Love the pic of you.
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[User Picture]From: chu_hi
2005-02-09 10:37 am (UTC)
Thanks, Q!

(But how 'bout that tree!)
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[User Picture]From: slfcllednowhere
2005-02-19 05:20 am (UTC)
Yes yes, the tree is quite impressive too.

In Balboa Park in San Diego there's a huge tree and my dad says he used to go climb on it and stuff, but now they've got this fence around it. :(
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[User Picture]From: chu_hi
2005-02-19 01:27 pm (UTC)
Ugh, no way!! What's the point of a huge tree if they don't let you climb on it??


Is it this one? Fig tree!
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[User Picture]From: slfcllednowhere
2005-03-14 07:55 am (UTC)
Yes, I do believe so. It's a cool tree.
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From: a_o_i
2005-02-09 03:29 pm (UTC)
Wow, what great roots! Reminds me of the banyan trees back home on Okinawa.
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[User Picture]From: chu_hi
2005-02-19 01:21 pm (UTC)
Hey, I think that might be the same tree!
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