|The genus Protea are also called sugar bushes, caproses or feather bushes and are native to South Africa. The shrubs or small trees, up to 3 m high, are evergreen and have alternate or spirally arranged, leathery, green leaves. The small, tubular individual flowers form a conical or flat-headed inflorescence surrounded by white, pink, red, yellow, purple or green bracts (bracts).
The best sowing time is spring or autumn. These temperature fluctuations are important, otherwise the seeds would not germinate. Growing requires some attention as the seeds are very susceptible to fungal infection.
Place seeds in 50°C hot water for about half an hour and then spread them out and let them dry. It is best to sow immediately in individual pots to avoid root damage when repotting. As a plant pot, choose a pot that is not too small and has a volume of about 1 liter of soil, which you should put together as follows:
2 parts peat (alternatively coconut fiber substrate 'Kokohum')
2 parts coarse sand (not building sand)
1 part perlite or Styrofoam beads.
An acidic pH of 5.5 would be ideal. Then sterilize the substrate mixture in the oven at around 90°C for approx. 1 hour and let it cool down. The seeds are sown about 2 cm deep and should be covered with a thin layer of coarse sand. Please do not cover the seed tray or pot. Under no circumstances should you sow in a heated seed tray where the temperature is constant. The moisture should be checked regularly, preferably in the morning, and if necessary re-moistened with a hand sprayer. Please note that the seeds should not be too wet, but should not dry out either. When the first real leaves have appeared, the seedlings should be planted in approximately 1 liter pots if not sown in individual pots. Please use the same soil as for sowing.