Rubber bot or Indian rubber, Ficus elastica

Rubber bot or Indian rubber (Ficus elastica, family: Moraceae) is a medium or large evergreen tree with aerial prop roots grow from its branches. The fig tree with milky latex in its leaves and shoots can get a height of more than 30 meters. The trunk is smooth, black-colored and has very tiny whitish spots.

This tree is well-known as an ornamental plant. In Bangladesh, it is found on roadside area or the edge of forest and in parks and gardens. The beautiful tree is native to South and Southeast Asia.

Leaves are spectacular, simple, big, leathery, deep green, sometimes deep purplish, shiny and smooth, elliptic-ovate, 12-30 cm long and 5-12 cm wide, petioled, alternate, acuminate at the top.

Florets remain inside the fruit or fig which cannot be seen from outside. Fruiting occurs in the late spring. Fruits develop in the nodes of  the Fruits. They usually round, sometimes slender in shape. Mature fruits are yellow or red in color. The plant is propagated by seeds and cuttings.

The wow leaves of the plant

Although it is a huge tree but can be easily kept in one's house as an indoor plant. Some people confuse it with the Rubber plant. Although a kind of milky latex is obtained from its body and that's like almost the rubber! The last part of the scientific name is carrying the memorabilia. In Meghalaya, India as well as other Asian countries' local people have built bridges with the live roots of the tree. they are called living root bridges.


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