Protea Sulphurea

Family:

Proteaceae

Genus:

Protea

Species:

sulphurea – meaning ‘yellow’

Common name:

Skaamroos, Sulphur Sugarbush

50cm

April to August

Seeder, Small mammals

Dried, Fresh

What does the plant look like?

Protea sulphurea is a low, dense shrub with many branches that grow horizontally from the stem. It grows up to 50 cm tall. The grey-green leaves are oval and have a sharp tip.

What are the flowers like?

The flowers are cup-shaped and hang downwards. They are sulphur-yellow with purple-green bracts and also have a “yeasty” smell. Plants flower from April to August.

How does it reproduce?

Protea sulphurea is pollinated by small mammals such as rodents and elephant shrews. These are attracted by the yeasty smell and nectar in the flower heads. Seeds are retained in the dried flower heads for several years before being released.

Where is it found?

It grows from the Hex River Mountains to the Swartberg and Waboomsberg, at altitudes over 1000m.

How is it used?

It is harvested for the fresh- and dried-flower industries.

Conservation

[Red List: Least Concern]

Protea sulphurea is not currently threatened.