China's Flora Tour: The silent battle in Hainan's rainforest
By Zhao Ying
In Jianfengling tropical rainforest in south China's Hainan Province, fig trees are inconspicuous by their smaller size. However, they have one trait that makes people remember them. A single fig tree can create the look of a mini forest because of the aggressive growth of numerous aerial roots hanging from branches. Fig trees are also crucial to tropical rainforests as many animals feed on their fruits.
Sometimes, the seeds of fig trees dispersed by birds take root and sprout. These fig trees, commonly known as strangler fig, will envelop the host tree while growing upward for more sunlight. The host trees usually die and the strangler figs will take their original place. Such a silent battle happens in rainforests every day.
China's Flora Tour
From the wetlands along the coast to the dense rainforests hidden in the southwest of China, you can find an array of plant species. In this series, we will go on a tour to learn about some of the most representative flora in different provinces and see how they live in harmony with the local geography and climate.