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Indian banyan facts for kids

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Indian banyan
An Indian banyan tree (Ficus benghalensis) in front of the Edison museum in Fort Myers, Florida
Scientific classification
F. benghalensis
Binomial name
Ficus benghalensis

Ficus indica L.

"Indian banyan", is a tree which is native to the Indian Subcontinent. Specimens in India are among the largest trees in the world by canopy coverage.


Ficus benghalensis produces propagating roots which grow downwards as aerial roots. Once these roots reach the ground they grow into woody trunks. The figs produced by the tree are eaten by birds such as the Indian myna. Fig seeds that pass through the digestive system of birds are more likely to germinate and sprout earlier.

Banyan fruit Ficusbenghalensis IGZoopark Visakhapatnam
Banyan fruit at Indira Gandhi Zoo park, Visakhapatnam

Cultural significance

Ficus benghalensis is the national tree of India. The tree is considered sacred in India, and temples are often built beneath. Due to the large size of the tree's canopy it provides useful shade in hot climates. It is recognized as the National trees of both countries of the Indian subcontinent

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