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Ficus macrophylla subsp. columnaris

Family: Moraceae (mor-AY-see-ee) (Info)
Genus: Ficus (FY-kus) (Info)
Species: macrophylla subsp. columnaris
Synonym:Ficus columnaris



Foliage Color:

Unknown - Tell us

Bloom Characteristics:

Unknown - Tell us

Water Requirements:

Drought-tolerant; suitable for xeriscaping

Average Water Needs; Water regularly; do not overwater

Where to Grow:

Unknown - Tell us


over 40 ft. (12 m)


30-40 ft. (9-12 m)

over 40 ft. (12 m)


USDA Zone 9b: to -3.8 C (25 F)

USDA Zone 10a: to -1.1 C (30 F)

USDA Zone 10b: to 1.7 C (35 F)

USDA Zone 11: above 4.5 C (40 F)

Sun Exposure:

Sun to Partial Shade


Unknown - Tell us

Bloom Color:

Unknown - Tell us

Bloom Time:

Unknown - Tell us


Grown for foliage



Other details:

Unknown - Tell us

Soil pH requirements:

Unknown - Tell us

Patent Information:


Propagation Methods:

Unknown - Tell us

Seed Collecting:

Unknown - Tell us


This plant has been said to grow in the following regions:

Bonsall, California

Carlsbad, California

Hayward, California

San Diego, California

San Marino, California

Gardeners' Notes:


On May 15, 2010, BayAreaTropics from Hayward, CA wrote:

I was sent the seeds by a collector who traveled to Lord Howe Island-and he insists this is the TRUE C. macrophylla subsp. columnaris. The difference in foliage is obvious..the seed grown plant with large glossy leaves vrs. the California strains dark grey green.
It's been a very fast growing post-seedling young tree,and was not bothered by our light frosts that did nip F.elastica for example.
Now planted in a park where it can have all the room it needs to grow.


On Aug 25, 2008, Fallbrookguy from Fallbrook, CA wrote:

I take exception to the previous statement that this tree is everywhere in Southern California. Perhaps the previous poster has confused this tree with Ficus microcarpa? Ficus macrophylla v. columnaris is uncommon and usually seen only occasionally in a few public parks, arboreta and in the gardens of collectors. The trunks are generally quite vertical and unlike the straight species (Ficus macrophylla), this variant tends to not be as spreading in habit. Nevertheless the ultimate size is quite large with massive (but very ornamental) buttressed surface roots. This would make a wonderful fast growing tree for any very large property away from structures, sewer lines etc. The Huntington Botanical Garden has two beautiful old specimens in their rainforest garden.


On Jul 28, 2007, LuluB from Redondo Beach, CA wrote:

This tree is everywhere in Southern California. I see many cities removing this tree becasue they create so many problems.T hey distroy the walkways and driveways (concrete) because of their very agressive root system. They also damage your plumbing.
I would not recommend this tree unless you have several acres of property and you want full shade.


On Feb 1, 2004, palmbob from Acton, CA (Zone 8b) wrote:

Huge tree- not for most gardens unless they are acres large. It makes a great shade, though, if you have a lot of shade loving plants you want to put in the ground, and the roots are fantastic in shape (very destructive, though). Tree eventually grows we out of the prunable range unless you hire professionals. Leaves are large and shiny (3-5" in length). Figs unedible.

Differs from 'normal' form by having a much more upright structure and leaves seem much larger as well. I have to agree with 3rd comment about this tree... I have only seen it a few times in California and never in public- only one in a botanical garden and the other in a large private garden. I don't doubt it has destructive roots, but not seen any proof of that, at least in California. The 'normal' fo... read more