Saturday, July 28, 2012

Greek God



























Named after the Greek God Proteus, these are the best known of the Proteaceae family.  (You may purchase a lovely book about Protea in my book shop here)  Proteus was the Greek God who looked after Poseidon's seals. One of his powers was that he knew the future. For this reason many people searched for him to find out what their future held. But Proteus did not willingly part with this information. His favourite trick was to change shape and escape. Thus to obtain a prophesy from old Proteus you had to sneak up to him and grab tight. No matter what shape he took, be it a lion, snake, fire, dragon or water you had to hold tight lest he escape. If you outlasted him, he would foretell your future. 


Proteas are much sought after for their alluring combination of robust beauty and fragile charm. Products range from the eye-catching King Protea (Protea cynaroides) to the delicate Blushing Bride (Serruria florida), from the rich versatile colours of Leucadendron, to the soft milky hues of Smokebush (Conospermum spp.). Proteas are commercially grown worldwide and harvested sustainably from their native countries of South Africa and Australia. All are renowned for superb vase-life.


There are 136 species - most found on the African continent.  Another 82 types of Protea are found in South Africa  (mainly in the Cape area) and another 35 are found in tropical Africa.  There is an incredible variation in flower size, foliage form and growth habit. A beautiful botanical to base a project on.


Image Source


Patti Friday, Photojourno, reporting from inside 'The Art Dept.' at the international 'Embassy of Ideas'.
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