The colonies in the Cape Floristic Region and the floristic province of Southwest Australia have proved particularly interesting to botanists.
These areas represent two of the world's most prolific biodiversity hotspots. According to a study led by British biologists , the rate of evolution is three times faster here than normal, with new protea species appearing all the time and resulting in an astounding diversity of plant life.
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Was this page helpful? The father of taxonomy and botanist, Swedish- born Carl Linnaeus, gave the protea proteaceae its name in Proteas are named after Proteus, son of Poseidon and shape-shifter, highlighting the variety of plants found within the large proteaceae family. The first reference to a protea was found in a book published in Antwerp in , but botanists only officially introduced the plants to Europe in the s. With over species, proteas come in different shapes and sizes, from shrubs to tall trees.
Blue Planet Biomes - King Protea
Proteas are also known as sugarbushes, due to the excessive amount of nectar the flowers produce. Although South Africa is associated with proteas more than any other country, Australia has the largest collection of species on the planet—over South Africa comes in at second place, with more than species.
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The king protea, so called because of its resemblance to a crown, is the largest of all proteas and is found in the Cape Floristic region. Luckily, king protea is very popular and often cultivated in gardens, nurseries and greenhouses. Interesting King protea Facts: King protea develops few thick stems that can reach 3 feet in height.
King protea has flattened, paddle-shaped leaves. They are leathery, thick and dark green in color.
Leaves have long petioles and they are alternately arranged on the stem. King protea gets all the water it needs from the fog. Leaves absorb moist which collects on their surface.
pl.acuzigyqic.ga King protea develops 6 to 10 bowl-shaped flower heads that consist of numerous small, tubular-shaped flowers. They can be pink or crimson-colored and surrounded with large, stiff, pointed bracts modified petals-like leaves. Flowers contain both types of reproductive organs perfect flowers.
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Inner part of the flower head is filled with numerous white stamens oriented toward the center.