Rubber Trees

When I was a girl, I got a book from the library on how to make  dolls house furniture. It was from the 70’s,  in glorious shades or orange and mustard and chocolate brown, and the items you could make included a miniature shag-pile rug, and tiny rubber tree houseplant. I love that a rubber tree was obviously the archetypal 70’s houseplant.  Even in my family home we had a  Ficus Elastica, grown under the eves  by the front door. I have always liked them, with their almost cartoon like large dark green glossy leaves and minimalist structure, at least, kept in tiny pots in temperate zones they grow that way. So it was amazing to see ficus elastica unleashed, so to speak, in its fully formed tropical might. Apart from the distinctive leaves, you’d never believe it was the same plant. Though it was used to make latex rubber once, it is not the same tree as the commercial rubber tree, Hevea brasiliensis from Brazil.  Ficus Elastica is native to India, so we may see some more good ones when we go there next month. I took a photo of this one in the grounds of the Entebbe Botanic Gardens, where there is also an avenue of  large Hevea brasilinensis.  You can see the tree to the right of the road, and then the next shot is the trunk of the same tree with a monkey in the middle of it!

IMG_7084 (600x800)IMG_7085 (601x800)

The other lovely ficus elastica we saw was growing in the Entebbe Wildlife Park, and a group of stunning  great blue Turaco were frolicking in its branches. And then, a random camel wandered past the tree, followed by its baby.

IMG_6967 (600x800) - CopyIMG_6973 (800x611) - Copy

Advertisements

Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s