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(d) PROTEA – SUGARBUSH PROTEA – Botanical Print
The Common Sugarbush (Protea Repens) was one of the first proteas described by Carl Linnaeus (in 1753.) The Sugarbush’s claim to fame is its ‘honey’, which is in fact nectar. Quantities of nectar in excess of a teaspoon may readily be obtained from a flower head, much more following rain when cupfuls of dilute nectar may be poured out of a single head. At one time the collected juice was strained and boiled until the amber liquid formed a thick ruby-red syrup. Originally the syrup was used as a sugar-substitute (hence the name Sugarbush). The syrup is best recorded for its medicinal properties – namely curing coughs and other chest complaints. The medicinal use probably reached a peak in the early 1800’s when it was an essential item in local medicine chests.
Nectar is not the only substance produced by the Sugarbush. Bees collect the resin produced on the outsides of the flower heads to seal their nests. This resin seals the bracts so that nectar does not run out of the heads. It also functions as an ant-trap, hindering ants intent on stealing nectar. A large number of insects visit the flower heads, feeding on pollen, nectar, the blossom itself and one another. Even indigenous rats and mice visit the heads for the nectar.
The Sugarbush’s significance is not limited to South Africa. It is the first protea to have flowered in cultivation in Europe (at Kew Royal Gardens, ca 1780), and (ca 1890) in Australia, New Zealand and California, countries in which proteas are now important commercial crops.
Signed print from an original watercolour painting. This print is delivered rolled into a tube, ready for framing. Free worldwide shipping.
Size: 400mm x 300mm
10 in stock
Signed print from an original watercolour painting.
Printed on 425 GSM Fine Art Archival Canvas and delivered rolled into a tube, ready for stretching or framing. Free worldwide shipping.
Limited edition print of 100.
|Dimensions||40 × 30 cm|
400MM x 300MM