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Protea of South Africa and
Australia , plant information for growing and its use in flower arranging
Common Name: King Protea, Giant Protea
family, with only one genus (Protea) technically a true protea! There
are about 61 genera (groups) and 1,000 different species but not
all are grown commercially.
Country of Origin:
South Africa, Australia.
shrub with flowers that can be up to 20 cm wide. A spread of 2x3 meters.
must have perfect drainage or they may die after heavy rain. Slopes or
terraces are ideal. Open sunny position with some wind protection.
Fertilizer: A light
application of slow release fertiliser in spring.
To grow from seed in
autumn or spring.
The plants make excellent
cut flowers and are popular in dried arrangements.
design featured, by Mary Macgregor of New Zealand, shows how protea, with
aspidistra in a simple design, can create a stunning effect.
Protea generally have heavy
stems so recutting is important but mashing ends is not necessary. Heavy,
woody stems need a firmer floral foam and may need additional support
in an arrangement such as chicken wire or a cage.
Protea are thirsty, so replenish
preservative solution daily. Recutting thick stems every 3 days helps keep
water carrying vessels open. Handle carefully; Keep away from heat sources
In general the longest vase
life can be achieved when picking flowerheads when the outermost row of
floits has just begun to open, and they are picked at the coolest time
of the day.Flowerheads should never be picked before they start opening
as early picking inhibits opening. Never pick after rain or dew as wet
leaves tend to blacken more easily and develop fungus.
Because Flowerheads are
so large, each flowerhead can be a unit on it's own within the whole in
a design.. Larger Protea species are ideal for focal points within a display.
A stunning design seen at the
Designer of the Year 2001 in Northland New Zealand using proteas,
design using Proteas, by Pat McKenzie For the free lesson from the workshop
Pat attended, on a modern design click here
More on proteas, with a photographic collection here.
of the World by Lewis Matthews, Zoe Carter (Illustrator)
This book covers more than
130 examples of this unusual and spectacular family, including proteas,
banksias, leucodendrons, waratahs and other species and hybrids, the text
provides detailed information about the identification, cultivation, propagation
and beauty of this ancient family of plants. Matthews, nurseryman and world
authority on proteas, has written a luxurious book (9.75x13.25") featuring
exquisitely detailed, full page watercolors by artist Zoe Carter.
here to review, and buy online