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Ficus citrifolia tree Florida (Short leaf fig)Ficus citrifolia tree Florida (Short leaf fig)

Ficus Citrifolia

Short Leaf Fig

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Ficus Citrifolia Tree Description

Ficus Citrifolia (short leaf fig tree) is a Florida native tree, occurring on hammocks. It can grow to a height of 40 to 50 feet under ideal conditions. The tree develops a broad irregular open crown. It often forms roots at the surface and has smooth yellowish brown bark. Also, like several ficus species, its seeds are carried to the crown of a host tree where they germinate then live for a period as an epiphyte. Finally, they then extend aerial roots down to the ground, eventually strangling and replacing the host tree. The evergreen leaves are dark green, simple, alternate, smooth, leathery, oval shaped with a rounded base and pointed tip, resembling a citrus leaf and 2 – 4 inches long.

Furthermore, the flowers are inconspicuous, occurring inside the fruits which are borne on elongated stalks and are 1/4 – 1/2 inch in diameter, containing numerous very small seeds. Flowers are pollinated by specialty wasps and dispersed by birds. The fruits turn from yellow to purple when ripe and are edible. Propagation is by seed and cuttings. All parts of the tree contain a milky latex, which can be used to make chewing gum.

Short Leaf Fig Tree Cultivation and Landscape Usage

Ficus Citrifolia will grow on a range of gardening soils, dry to wet; it does best with moderate organic matter present and is very hardy once established. As a medium-sized foliage tree, and given its tendency to spread, short leaf fig tree requires adequate space for growth, and hence is best suited to large gardens and parks as an unusual specimen or native tree. It is best cultivated where litter does not cause problems.

🌳Other popular and beautiful plants: Stranger fig tree.

Additional information

Common Name

Short Leaf Fig

Florida Native

Yes, FL Native


South Florida, West Indies & The Bahamas

Salt Tolerance

Low Salt Tolerance

Growth Rate

Fast Growth Rate

Light Requirements

Full Sun to Partial Shade

Flower Color



Wide Canopy

Plant Type



25 gal., 45 gal., 65 gal., 100 gal., 200 gal., 300 gal.