Protea mundii

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Botanical Name
Protea mundii
Proteaceae - The Protea family
PROH-tee-uh MUN-dee-eye
Common Name(s)
English: Forest White Sugarbush; Forest Sugarbush; White Sugarbush
Afrikaans: Bos-witsuikerbos; Suikerbos; Witsuikerbos
Plant Group
  • Fynbos Certain plants endemic to the areas of the Western Cape of South Africa that have a Mediterranean climate of cold, wet winters and hot, dry summers.
  • Tree A woody, self-supporting perennial plant usually with a single main stem and generally growing more than 6 meters tall.
Plant Size
  • Small
    Tree4m to 8m
    Shrub50cm to 75cm
    Perennial/ground cover10cm to 20cm
    Bulb20cm to 30cm
    Succulent10cm to 20cm
  • Very Small
    Tree3m to 4m
    Shrub25cm to 50cm
    Perennial/ground coverUp to 10cm
    Bulb10cm to 20cm
    SucculentUp to 5cm
  • Partial Shade The area is in shade for part of the day and in full sun for part of the day.
  • Sun The area is in full sun for all or most of the day, all year round.
General Information
  • Drought Tolerance: Moderate The plant is moderately adapted to arid conditions and can survive short periods of drought and high temperatures without extra water.
  • Evergreen Plants that have leaves all year round.
  • Frost: Tender A plant that will not survive any frost or low winter temperatures.
  • Water Moderate These plants will need some extra watering compared to water-wise plants. Plant them together, in at least some shade and in a convenient proximity to the house so that grey water can be utilised during times of drought.
  • Wind Tolerant Plants able to withstand the effect of strong winds.
Specific Information

Protea mundii is an erect, single stemmed shrub to small tree with elliptic, bright green leaves. New growth is pinkish and slightly furry while mature leaves are smooth with a red margin. Young stems and shoots are an attractive deep pink colour with fine hairs, turning smooth and grey as they mature. The plants are reportedly killed by fire with only the seeds surviving. A fast growing species which makes a useful windbreak or as part of a boundary planting.

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small, oblong heads up to 8 cm long and 6,5 cm across, with pink or creamy-green bracts

  • Summer to Autumn Plants will seldom bloom for the entire season as given in the list, but should flower during a period within these parameters.
  • pink
  • creamy-green
Growth Rate
  • Fast Specifying growth rate can be very misleading as there is considerable variation of growth rate depending on type and species of plant, available water, supplementary feeding, mulching and general care, as well as the plants suitability and adaptability to the garden environment.
Plant Uses
  • Attracts bees, butterflies or other insects This plant attracts insects which can be food for birds or other creatures in your garden.
  • Attracts Birds This plant will attract birds.
  • Boundary A plant useful for planting around the edges of the property to form a green or colourful backdrop, an impenetrable hedge, to hide walls or create privacy.
  • Cut Flowers Plants that provide flowers suitable for ornamental uses.
  • Filler Either a fast growing tree or shrub used temporarily to fill in an area while the permanent plants grow to a desired size, or a plant used to fill gaps in borders or beds.
  • Wild Garden An indigenous garden planted for the benefit of wildlife and birds. Provides food, water, a variety of mini-biomes and no poisonous chemicals are used.
  • Windbreak Trees planted in a row to form protection from prevailing winds by breaking the force of the wind, thereby reducing wind damage.
Distribution and Habitat

in the Western Cape to the southern border of the Eastern Cape, in a small area on the Kogelberg to Klein River Mountains, and a separate, larger area on the Outeniqua and Kouga Mountains to Tsitsikamma and Winterhoek Mountains, on moist mountain slopes, ravines, along streams and as a pioneer species along forest margins, in relic patches of once extensive forests, often in dense stands

Planting Suggestions

Sow seeds in autumn in acid soil.

Protea Mundii needs well-drained, nutrient poor soil in an airy position. In general, Proteas do not grow well in clay soils and will die if their roots are kept wet. If possible plant on a slope or on slightly elevated mound to prevent drainage problems. Dig a hole twice the width of the container and one and a half times the height. Do not apply artificial fertilizer or fresh manure to the soil mix. Mulch well around the plant but keep the area around the trunk of the plant clear, as the crown of the plant must be able to dry off. Proteas have a dense network of fine roots just below the surface of the soil and no cultivation should take place below them as disturbance will damage the roots and possibly introduce fungal disease, resulting in the death of the plant. The use of a thick mulch of leaf litter and pine bark/needles will feed the plant, keep the soil cool and discourage weeds. In summer rainfall areas water regularly during winter and occasionally in summer if the weather is dry. Always water in the early morning, preferably before the sun has fully risen.  Stems bearing old flower heads should be cut back to encourage the development of new shoots and long stems.

If growing Protea from seed, see this blog:

Lorraine's Garden Notes



Rebelo, Tony; 1995. Sasol Proteas - A field guide to the Proteas of Southern Africa. Fernwood Press, Vlaeberg

COATES-PALGRAVE, M. 2002. Keith-Coates Palgrave Trees of southern Africa, 3rd edn., 2nd imp. Struik Publishers, Cape Town.

Medicinal Uses

No data found.

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