Banyan tree history
Good day, could you please advise whether a Banyan tree would grow in the Western Cape of South Africa, is it indigenous and is it a protected species. Many thanks Daphne
Certified GKH Gardening Expert
Ficus benghalensis is the species of fig tree commonly known as 'banyan'. It's a tropical tree native to India and in fact is the national tree of India. There are other fig species that are sometimes called banyan, like the Chinese banyan Ficus microcarpa, and the weeping Chinese banyan Ficus benjamina.
The other question was would it grow there. That is probably dictated by the lowest temperature; as a tropical tree it will not be suitable for sub freezing temperatures, if you get that in winter in the western cape. The Chinese species are subtropical and may be better adapted.