Protea Eximia

Family:

Proteaceae

Genus:

Protea

Species:

eximia – meaning ‘excellent’ or ‘special’

Common name:

Broad-leaf Sugarbush

5m

July to December

Birds, Seeder

Fresh

What does the plant look like?

Protea eximia is a large shrub with a single stem and few branches. It grows up to five metres tall and three metres wide. The leaves are purple-green and covered with a white powder that rubs off when touched. The leaves feel like leather. They are 60-100 mm long and 30-65 mm wide.

What are the flowers like?

The flower heads are 100-140 mm long and up to 120 mm wide. The flower bracts are covered with small hairs on their outer surfaces. The outer bracts are short and cream to white in colour. The inner bracts are longer and light to dark pink. The tips of the individual florets in the centre of the flower are covered with dark pink hairs that feel soft like velvet. Plants flower from July to December but mainly from August to October.

How does it reproduce?

Protea eximia is pollinated by Sugarbirds and Sunbirds. Seeds are retained in flower heads until after the next fire.

Where is it found?

It grows at altitudes from 200-1,600 metres. It is found from Worcester, via Van Stadensberg, to Port Elizabeth.

How is it used?

It is used in the cut-flower industry.

Conservation

[Red List: Least Concern]

This species is not threatened.