Saturday, December 31, 2016

In praise of Moreton Bay Figs

I've noticed them here and there around Southern California, but this trip the enormous Australian figs (Ficus macrophylla) impressed me enough to do a little research and find out they have a pretty extensive range in Eastern Australia, and are commonly planted in many subtropical regions--with many enormous specimens throughout coastal Southern California. The ones above and below were both photographed last Thursday (December 29) at the park surrounding the Point Fermin lighthouse in San Pedro, California. Jan (above) joined by her mother Anita (below) give a sense scale..

There was quite a variation in the shape of the boles, and in the size and form of the buttressing roots.


The graceful, broad shape of the crown of the tree is especially impressive--this was a perfect specimen, photographed here from the southwest looking west towards the sea.

The same tree, taken from a slightly different angle with more of a silhouette--with Catalina island visible in the distance.

And this smaller specimen in the middle of the Boulevard in Palos Verdes estates--forming especially prominent buttresses.

When one becomes familiar with a tree such as this, suddenly you begin to see them everywhere. Although, alas, not in Colorado! Where I'm watching the last minutes of 2016 slip away...

Here's to a new year! May you be as stalwart as a Moreton Bay Fig in the coming year!

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