Ficus rubiginosa

Port jackson fig

Family: Moraceae

Origin: Australia

Close up of port jackson fig.
Figs are produced directly on the branches and are small and orange/ brown. Figs are not palatable to humans but are eaten by birds.
Photo credit: Jackie Miles and Max Campbell

Regional Pest Management Plan (RPMP) status

  • Whole region — Sustained control
  • National Pest Plant Accord Species

View more about the RPMP statuses

General description

Evergreen, multi-stemmed tree < 15 m tall. Leaves are oval and < 12 cm long. Flowers are borne in an enclosed inflorescence (synconium) during summer. Fruit is yellow/red and < 2 cm in diameter.

What you need to know

To help protect our environment:

  • You must not breed, distribute, release or sell port jackson fig. as fig is a national pest plant accord species, these restrictions apply within the auckland region and across whole of new zealand.
  • You must not plant Port Jackson fig within the Auckland region, unless you are transferring an existing plant on your land to another location within the boundaries of the same property.
  • You must destroy any Port Jackson fig on land that you occupy if it has been planted in breach of the above rules and you are directed to do so by an authorised person.


Rock walls, graves, rocky outcrops, cliffs, scrub, open coastal forest, epiphytic on palms and rough barked trees.


Seeds dispersed by birds and possibly mammals.

Impact on environment

Reduces above-ground biomass of forests and alters vegetation structure. May affect frugivore communities by providing food resource to possums, feral pigs and rodents.


Site Management

Follow up treated areas 3 times per year. Encourage natural regeneration of native plants or replant treated areas where possible after 2-3 treatments to establish dense ground cover and minimise reinvasion.

Recommended approaches

Physical control

Method: Dig or pull out.

Plant parts requiring disposal: Seeds and epiphytes in trees.

Disposal options: Remove to greenwaste or landfill if practical.


Biocontrol is currently not available for this species.

Community agrichemical control recommendations

No qualifications: Cut stump and paste freshly cut base of stems with metsulfuron gel.

Basic Growsafe certified: Cut stump and spray freshly cut base with 2g metsulfuron-methyl per 1 L of water.

Certified Handler/Experienced agrichemical user: Drill and inject trees with 5g metsulfuron-methyl per 1L of water if safe to do so. Drill 18mm holes (tangentially angled downwards) in a spiral up the trunk. For 50mm stems drill one hole. For 100mm stems drill two holes. For larger stems drill holes 150mm apart.

Safety notes

Large trees must not be drilled that are closer than 1.5 times the height of the tree from paths, walkways and property.

Trees over 4 metres in height should be removed by a qualified arborist.

Caution: When using any herbicide or pesticide please read the label thoroughly to ensure that all instructions and safety requirements are followed.

Close up of port jackson fig leaves.
A large evergreen tree that has many stems and can grow up to 15m tall. Leaves are large and thick and can be up to 12cm long.
Photo credit: Jackie Miles and Max Campbell
Port jackson tree growing against a rocky wall.
Can alter the structure of forests as it dominates an area. Figs can provide a food source for possums, wild pigs and rats during the winter months.
Photo credit: Jackie Miles and Max Campbell