The Dinner Plate Fig
With large pleated leaves the size of dinner plate and indeed much larger, Ficus dammaropsis is one of the best foliage plants available.
From the Highlands of New Guinea it grows at altitudes of around 700 to 2000 metres. Foliage is a good deep green with new foliage emerging with a bronze tinge to it. Although this is a tropical species it will grow well cooler climates, and outdoors in the at least as far south as Melbourne.
Evergreen and reaching up to 10m in height, the large textured foliage makes some of the smaller ficus species that are popular as indoor plants pale in comparison. The leaves were used in cooking, particularly wrapping meat such a pigs for cooking in traditional unground fire pits.
The leaves emerge covered by a stipule, this is a plant that is difficult to grow from seed outside of the natural environment, as pollination is by a very specific wasp only found in New Guinea they do not produce seeds
It is rare in cultivation as it is a little difficult to propagate from cuttings. However it is available and we think it would make an excellent indoor plant with proper care. seems to be successful.
You can grow Ficus dammaropsis in a container, although it will need to be pruned after a while as it will outgrow all but the largest pots. Start it of in a container surrounded by other plants that require a little shade. It will give a tropical look to any patio or courtyard and provide shade for smaller plants.
Ficus dammaropsis Care
Although Ficus dammaropsis is said to grow well in full sun, it may suffer a little leaf burn on very hot days.
From our observation, afternoon shade to dappled shade is best. Like most ficus species, a humus rich soil that retains some moisture is best.
Ficus dammaropsis will cope with dry spells once established, however it will perform better with moisture through summer.
- Well drained soil that retains some moisture.
- Full sun in cooler areas, to afternoon shade in areas with hot summers.
- Keep moist through summer.
- Fertilise regularly with a liquid seaweed fertiliser.
- Botanical Name: Ficus dammaropsis
- Common Names; Dinner Plate Fig.
- Origins: New Guinea in Highland areas.
- Position; Light shade
- Soil: humus rich moist with good drainage
- Height: To 10m (30ft)
- Spread: To 5m (15ft)
- Foliage Large pleated leaves, evergreen.
- Flowers: Insignificant
- Frost tolerant: No
- Drought tolerant: No
Ficus dammaropsis is available for sale from the following nurseries
82 David Hill Rd Monbulk (Opposite Vika Ave)
Japanese Maple and Magnolia specialists, Wholesale and Retail. Large range of other deciduous and evergreen ornamental trees and shrubs.