About the Protea

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Cape Pride Proteas
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The Protea is one of the most prominent flowering plant families in the Southern Hemisphere. An ancient family, it existed before Gondwana began to break up some 140 million years ago, at the time the dinosaurs roamed the earth.


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About 360 species of Proteas are found in Southern Africa of which more than 330 species are confined to the Cape Floral Kingdom, a rich floral treasure confined to a small geographical area spared from the ravages of the last Ice Age.

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The Overberg is ideally suited to the ancient proteas that grow on decomposed granite soil, which is well drained, acid and low in fertility. These rugged plants thrive with lots and sun, and high daytime temperatures of up to 35° C, but also need to cool down at night. They tolerate a certain measure of frost and snow, but dislike prolonged humid conditions.

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Soil for proteas must be well-drained, as they do not tolerate wet feet for long periods. The pH of between 5.0 and 7.0 is ideal for proteas. While proteas grow well in poor soil, they are actively poisoned by high levels of phosphorous.

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