March 29th – “Red Baron” Protea

Protea "Red Baron"

The protea is an eye catching flower with origins in South Africa, but have established in many places around the world with a warm, dry climate – including Australia and California. Genetically speaking, the Red Baron is a hybrid, coming from a cross between the Protea compacta by Protea obtusifolia.

Once established the Red Baron is a drought and frost tolerant shrub, and can survive in climates approaching freezing. They are a highly regarded flower to have in the garden, they are full of nectar (thus earning the nickname “Sugarbush”) and will attract all sorts of insects and bird life into your garden.

The genus “Protea” is named after the Greek God Proteus, who could assume many different shapes.

Speaking of shapes, I’ve cropped this image square which isn’t something I do too often. It’s a method we are familiar with due to social apps like Instagram, but in some cases it frames a flower such as this very nicely.

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