IDM Zimbabwe - Chimanimani Sugarbush - Protea enervis
The Red Sugarbushes are represented by only one species in the region. As a group they are characterized by their narrow, medium to small leaves, hairy when young , but hairless when mature. The involucral bracts are red and hairless, pointed. The flowerheads are small, closing after flowering to a conical or turban shape.
Protea enervis Chimanimani Sugarbush
A small shrub with a rootstock and trailing stems, up to 1.5m across. Leaves linear, sickle-shaped, 1-5 mm wide, 40-50 mm long, hairless. Flowerhead small, 50 mm long, stalk 10 mm long. Involucral bracts hairless. Style 30 mm long.
This species is clearly very closely related to Protea paludosa subsp. secundifolia, from Northwestern Zambia. However, the pink flowers, involucral bracts shorter than the flowers and the hairless tepal base, and a rootstock separate the Chimanimani Sugarbush from Pr paludosa.
Pr ener is only known from the Chimanimani Mountains on acidic soils with other localized endemic proteas. It prefers more open areas conducive to its sprawling habit.