Broom Cluster Fig
Ficus sur Forssk
Common names: broom cluster fig (Eng.); besem-trosvy (Afr.); mogo-tshetlo (North Sotho); umkhiwane (Xhosa); umkhiwane (Zulu)
- The female wasp has been observed to lay her eggs in special infertile flowers as well as pollinating the fertile flowers and gathering pollen in special sacs.
- Each species of fig has its own specific species of wasp that pollinates it.
- The seed is small and swallowed together with the fruit by the many birds and mammals.
- Seeds are dispersed through the faeces of the animal (distributing the species further afield).
- Sacred religions and spiritual rituals are performed under this tree (Middle East).
- Milky latex used for burns and conjuntivitus (folk remedy).
- It is believed to have magical powers and is used in rituals by local people.
- The tree has also used as a magical cure for boils.
- A combination of leaves and bark (concoction) has been administered to cows with poor milk production in order to stimulate milk production.
- The root of the tree is reportedly used to assist when a cow retains part of the placenta after giving birth.
- Lung and throat problems have been treated using the milky latex found in live growth.
- Fig jam (or preserve) has been can also be made from the fruit.
- Local people claim that the fruit that form off the roots are high in sugar, making them the sweeter of the figs produced by the tree.
- The wood is used as a base by bushmen as part of the equipment necessary when igniting fire by friction.
- The wood has been used for making mortars for grinding flour as well as for making drums.
- The wood was used extensively to make brake blocks and bed boards for ox wagons.
- The inner bark is used to make rope.
- The wood is used to produce wheel spokes, handles, roof beams, ornaments and turnery.
- It is highly valued for furniture making, roof beams, tool and implement handles, flooring, vehicle bodies, mine props, toys, novelties, precision equipment, vats and general carpentry.