Welcome to Discover Protea

Colorful Protea flowers happen to be among my favorites.Protea bouquet

They come in many forms, from tiny dwarf Protea flowers to Protea shrubs, and even large Protea trees. The Protea blooms range in size from two to twelve inches in diameter. Proteaceae as a plant family is so varietal that it challenged classification until 1735 when the Swedish botanist, Linnaeus, assigned this family a name. Linnaeus called this family ‘Proteaceae’ after the ‘Proteus’, who was the sea shepherd subject to the Greek god Poseidon. The name is an appropriate moniker for this plant that presents a breathtaking assemblage of contour, sizes, colors and textures. There are over 1,500 different species of this diverse family classified so far, although only about 160 are raised for commercial use.

For all of you fellow Harry Potter fans,

By adding “magnus”, the Latin word for “wizard”, to the word “animal as J.K. Rowling did coining the term “animagnus”: which boils down to a wizard who can become an animal. One of the first wizards to display this talent the Greek mythological figure Proteus.  Proteus had the talent to know the past, present, and future. He was often asked to make predictions, so in order to dodge people he would convert into an animal or other creature.  You are probably wondering where I am going with this, but something that changes shape is said to be ‘protean’. This is the word origin of the families in a floral group called Proteaceae.

Origin of Proteaceae

Plant life research indicates that Proteaceae probably originated in South Africa along the southern coastal mountain ranges, growing wild in the Cape of Good Hope and on the slopes of Table Mountain. Some 140 million years ago, Gondwana (the southern hemisphere combined into one land mass) started to break up into separate continents which, eventually, became India, Madagascar, and the southern continents; Australasia, Antarctica, and South America as we know them today. The ancient members of the Proteaceae family followed separate evolutionary courses on these now isolated landmasses as they moved to their current positions as they are today. Protea, Leucadendron, and Leucospermum stayed mainly in Southern Africa, while their cousins, Banksias, moved to Australia. In New Zealand, there are now just two living indigenous members of the Proteaceae family, yet the fossil record clearly shows the land once supported a rich, diverse range of Proteaceae.

Protea is my favorite.

This beautiful species of flowers are my favorite and that is why I named my blog site after  Protea. I am sharing this with you and I hope you get a little pleasure from these tidbits and then take the inspiration to go out and find something awesomely beautiful outside your door, on your way to school, work or possible n your next long weekend or short vacation.  Til then enjoy life

Fragile Protea Blossom.