Protea welwitschii Engl.

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Protea welwitschii

Kanyere River S valley slope
Mar 2008
Photo: Mike Bingham

Protea welwitschii

Kanyere River S valley slope
Mar 2008
Photo: Mike Bingham

Protea welwitschii

Leaves hairy
Kanyere River S valley slope
Mar 2008
Photo: Mike Bingham

Protea welwitschii

Kanyere River S valley slope
Mar 2008
Photo: Mike Bingham

Protea welwitschii

The suffrutex form in dambo grassland
Jan 2000
Photo: Mike Bingham

Protea welwitschii

Stems erect, unbranched
Jan 2000
Photo: Mike Bingham

Protea welwitschii

The less common form with pink bracts.
Solwezi, Meheba Dambo
Mrt 2013
Photo: Mike Bingham

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Species details: Click on each item to see an explanation of that item (Note: opens a new window)

Synonyms: Leucadendron leucolepharis Hiern
Leucadendron welwitschii (Engl.) Hiern
Protea abyssinica Willd. var. adolphi-friderici Engl.
Protea abyssinica Willd. var. brevifolia Engl.
Protea congensis Engl.
Protea eickii Engl.
Protea goetzeana Engl.
Protea hirta Klotzsch
Protea leucoblepharis (Hiern) Baker
Protea melliodora Engl. & Gilg
Protea myrsinifolia Engl. & Gilg
Protea obtusifolia De Wild.
Protea swynnertonii S. Moore
Protea uhehensis Engl.
Scolymocephalus hirtus Kuntze
Common names:
Status: Native
A small tree or shrub, 1-3(5) m tall, or a suffrutex with unbranched annual or short-lived stems to c. 1 m tall in dambo grassland. Young stems brown tomentose. Leaves hairy, 2-5(6) times as long as broad, usually rounded at base. Flowerheads mostly terminal and solitary, sometimes in clusters of 2 to 4.
Type location:
Notes: Current opinion does not recognize subdivisions, preferring to regard the various forms as belonging to a single polymorphic species. The tree tolerates soils with levels of copper and nickel toxic to most woody species.
Flowering time: Feb-Mar (peak)
Derivation of specific name: welwitschii: Named after the Austrian botanist, Friedrich Martin Welwitsch (1806-1872)
Habitat: Miombo woodland, rocky escarpment slopes, dambo grassland
Altitude range:
Flowering time:Dec - May
Worldwide distribution: Angola, DRC, Uganda, Tanzania, Malawi, Mozambique, Zambia, Zimbabwe and South Africa.
Zambian distribution (Flora Zambesiaca): B,N,W,C,E
Zambian distribution (Provinces): Cb,Lp,N,Mc,C,Lk,W
Growth form(s): Tree.
Endemic status:
Red data list status:
Insects associated with this species:
Spot characters: Display spot characters for this species
Content last updated: Monday 28 November 2016

Beard, J.S. (1963). The genus Protea in Tropical Africa Kirkia 3 Pages 175 - 182. (Includes a picture).

Beard, J.S. (1992). The Proteas of Tropical Africa Kangaroo Press Pages 44 - 48. (Includes a picture).

Burrows, J.E. & Willis, C.K. (eds) (2005). Plants of the Nyika Plateau Southern African Botanical Diversity Network Report No. 31 SABONET, Pretoria Page 230. as Protea welwitschii welwitschii

Burrows, J.E., Burrows, S.M., Lötter, M.C. & Schmidt, E. (2018). Trees and Shrubs Mozambique Publishing Print Matters (Pty), Cape Town. Page 106. (Includes a picture).

Chapano, C. & Mamuto, M. (2003). Plants of the Chimanimani District National Herbarium and Botanic Garden, Zimbabwe Page 45. As Protea welwitschii welwitschii

Chisumpa, S.M., Brummitt, R.K. & Marner, S. (2006). Proteaceae Flora Zambesiaca 9(3) Pages 75 - 77.

Coates Palgrave, K. (revised and updated by Meg Coates Palgrave) (2002). Trees of Southern Africa 3rd edition. Struik, South Africa Pages 178 - 179.

Coates Palgrave, K. et al. (1956). Trees of Central Africa National Publications Trust, Salisbury. Pages 356 - 358. as Protea melliodora (Includes a picture).

Coates Palgrave, M. (1989). Guide to the trees and shrubs of the Mukuvisi Woodlands ?publisher. Page 5.

Drummond, R.B. (1975). A list of trees, shrubs and woody climbers indigenous or naturalised in Rhodesia. Kirkia 10(1) Page 235.

Mapaura, A. & Timberlake, J. (eds) (2004). A checklist of Zimbabwean vascular plants Southern African Botanical Diversity Network Report No. 33 Sabonet, Pretoria and Harare Page 69.

Plowes, D.C.H. & Drummond, R.B. (1990). Wild Flowers of Zimbabwe. Revised edition. Longman, Zimbabwe. No. 39, plate 60

Strugnell, A.M. (2006). A Checklist of the Spermatophytes of Mount Mulanje, Malawi Scripta Botanica Belgica 34 National Botanic Garden of Belgium Page 156.

Wursten, B., Timberlake, J. & Darbyshire, I. (2017). The Chimanimani Mountains: an updated checklist. Kirkia 19(1) Page 98.

Other sources of information about Protea welwitschii:

Our websites:

Flora of Caprivi: cultivated Protea welwitschii
Flora of Malawi: Protea welwitschii
Flora of Mozambique: Protea welwitschii
Flora of Zimbabwe: Protea welwitschii

External websites:

African Plants: A Photo Guide (Senckenberg): Protea welwitschii
African Plant Database: Protea welwitschii
BHL (Biodiversity Heritage Library): Protea welwitschii
EOL (Encyclopedia of Life): Protea welwitschii
GBIF (Global Biodiversity Information Facility): Protea welwitschii
Google: Web - Images - Scholar
iNaturalist: Protea welwitschii
IPNI (International Plant Names Index): Protea welwitschii
JSTOR Plant Science: Protea welwitschii
Mansfeld World Database of Agricultural and Horticultural Crops: Protea welwitschii
Plants of the World Online: Protea welwitschii
Tropicos: Protea welwitschii
Wikipedia: Protea welwitschii

Copyright: Mike Bingham, Annette Willemen, Bart Wursten, Petra Ballings and Mark Hyde, 2011-23

Bingham, M.G., Willemen, A., Wursten, B.T., Ballings, P. and Hyde, M.A. (2023). Flora of Zambia: Species information: Protea welwitschii., retrieved 30 November 2023

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