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Ficus pumila


Ficus pumila L.

Family Name: Moraceae
Synonyms: Ficus stipulata, Ficus longipedicellata
Common Name: Creeping Fig, Climbing Fig, Creeping Ficus, Creeping Rubberplant, Ara Jalar, 薜荔


Family Name
Genus Epithet
Species Epithet
Name Authority
Name Status (botanical)
Common Names

Classifications and Characteristics

Plant Division Angiosperms (Flowering Seed Plants) (Dicotyledon)
Plant Growth Form Climber, Vine & Liana
Lifespan (in Singapore) Perennial
Mode of Nutrition Autotrophic
Maximum Height 2.5 m to 4 m
Maximum Plant Spread / Crown Width 1.5 m to 2.5 m


Native Distribution Southern China, Taiwan, Japan, Vietnam
Native Habitat Terrestrial (Disturbed Area / Open Ground)
Preferred Climate Zone Sub-Tropical / Monsoonal, Temperate

Description and Ethnobotany

Growth Form Woody vine up to 4 m long with a climbing growth habit or trailing in the absence of vertical support.
Foliage Egg-shaped leaves are 2-5 cm long on climbing vines,
Fruits Purple, pear-shaped figs grow up to 5 cm long.
Cultivation Prune regularly to encourage new growth with smaller leaves, and discourage mature woody, shrub-like growth.
Ethnobotanical Uses Edible Plant Parts (Edible Fruits)
Medicinal ( Stems and leaves used in Traditional Chinese Medicine as tonic and to treat fever. Leaves used in Japan in beverages to treat diabetes and high blood pressure. A decoction of fruits, stems and leaves are used to treat joint pain due to arthritis, rheumatism and sprains. Fruits said to promote lactation for mothers and cure impotency. Roots used to treat bladder problems and induce urination.)

Landscaping Features

Landscaping It is planted to cover walls and overhead bridges.
Plant & Rootzone Preference - Tolerance Easy to Grow, Disease / Pest Resistant, Shallow Media (8 -10cm), Moist Soils, Well-Drained Soils, Fertile Loamy Soils
Landscape Uses General, Vertical Greenery / Green Wall
Thematic Landscaping Rockery / Desert Garden
SGMP Treatment
Plant & Rootzone Preference or Tolerance Remarks Able to cling and grow directly on natural and articial surfaces.

Fauna, Pollination and Dispersal

Fauna Pollination Dispersal Associated Fauna Bird Attracting

Plant Care and Propagation

Light Preference Semi-Shade, Full Sun
Water Preference Moderate Water
Plant Growth Rate Moderate
Planting Distance From 0
Maintenance Requirements Low
Pruning Prune regulary to restrict growth to desired locations (eg. from windows), encourage new growth with smaller leaves, and discourage aggressive woody growth and fruiting
Diseases It is generally resistant to diseases.
Pest(s) Sucking Insects
Propagation Method Seed, Stem Cutting (Semi-Hardwood)


Foliage Retention Evergreen
Mature Foliage Colour(s) Green
Mature Foliage Texture(s) Leathery, Rough
Prominent Young Flush Colour(s) Red
Foliar Type Simple / Unifoliate
Foliar Arrangement Along Stem Alternate
Foliar Attachment to Stem Sessile
Foliar Shape(s) Non-Palm Foliage (Ovate)
Foliar Venation Pinnate / Net
Foliar Margin Entire
Foliar Apex - Tip Acute
Foliar Base Cordate
Typical Foliar Area Microphyll ( 2.25cm2 - 20.25 cm2 )

Non - Foliar and Storage

Stem Type & Modification Woody
Root Type Underground (Fibrous Root)

Floral (Angiosperm)

Flower & Plant Sexuality 1 Bisexual Flowers
Flower Size - Remarks Very small, gathered on inner surface of synconium
Flowering Habit Polycarpic

Fruit, Seed and Spore

Mature Fruit Colour(s) - Angiosperms and Gymnosperms Purple, Red
Fruit Classification Simple Fruit
Fruit Type 1 Fleshy Fruit
Fruit Type 2 Multiple Syconium (receptacle)

Image Repository



Master ID 107
Species ID 1403
Flora Disclaimer The information in this website has been compiled from reliable sources, such as reference works on medicinal plants. It is not a substitute for medical advice or treatment and NParks does not purport to provide any medical advice. Readers should always consult his/her physician before using or consuming a plant for medicinal purposes.
Species record last updated on: 19 August 2021.