Common Spear-leaf Conebush

Scientific Name
Leucadendron spissifolium (Salisb. ex Knight) I.Williams subsp. spissifolium
Higher Classification
Leucadendron glabrum R.Br., Leucadendron marginatum (Willd.) Link, Leucadendron minus E.Phillips & Hutch. et var., Leucadendron minus E.Phillips & Hutch. var. glabrescens E.Phillips & Hutch., Leucadendron riparium T.M.Salter et var., Leucadendron riparium T.M.Salter var. collinum T.M.Salter
Common Names
Common Spear-leaf Conebush (e), Knopbos (a), Vleigeelbos (a)
National Status
Status and Criteria
Least Concern
Assessment Date
A.G. Rebelo, H. Mtshali & L. von Staden
Widespread and not in danger of extinction.
South African endemic
Provincial distribution
Western Cape
Gifberg and Cederberg to the Cape Peninsula and Kogelberg, extending eastwards to the Langeberg at Kampscheberg.
Habitat and Ecology
Major system
Major habitats
Overberg Sandstone Fynbos, Northern Inland Shale Band Vegetation, Western Coastal Shale Band Vegetation, Central Coastal Shale Band Vegetation, Swellendam Silcrete Fynbos, Hangklip Sand Fynbos, Boland Granite Fynbos, Robertson Granite Fynbos, Kouebokkeveld Shale Fynbos, Breede Shale Fynbos, Cape Winelands Shale Fynbos, Elgin Shale Fynbos, Greyton Shale Fynbos, Breede Alluvium Fynbos, Kogelberg Sandstone Fynbos, Peninsula Sandstone Fynbos, North Sonderend Sandstone Fynbos, South Sonderend Sandstone Fynbos, North Langeberg Sandstone Fynbos, South Langeberg Sandstone Fynbos, South Outeniqua Sandstone Fynbos, South Swartberg Sandstone Fynbos, Olifants Sandstone Fynbos, Cederberg Sandstone Fynbos, Winterhoek Sandstone Fynbos, Piketberg Sandstone Fynbos, North Hex Sandstone Fynbos, South Hex Sandstone Fynbos, Hawequas Sandstone Fynbos
Damp sandstone soils on south-facing slopes, 0-1300 m. It is a long-lived species, and survives fires by resprouting from underground boles or rootstocks. Wind-dispersed seeds are stored in fire-resistant inflorescences, and released after fires. It is dioecious, with insect-pollinated male and female flowers occurring on separate plants.
This species' habitat outside the protected areas is threatened by too frequent fires and spread of alien invasive species.
Population trend
Assessment History
Taxon assessed
Status and Criteria
Citation/Red List version
Leucadendron spissifolium (Salisb. ex Knight) I.Williams subsp. spissifolium Least Concern Raimondo et al. (2009)

Raimondo, D., von Staden, L., Foden, W., Victor, J.E., Helme, N.A., Turner, R.C., Kamundi, D.A. and Manyama, P.A. 2009. Red List of South African Plants. Strelitzia 25. South African National Biodiversity Institute, Pretoria.

Rebelo, T. 2001. Sasol Proteas: A field guide to the proteas of southern Africa. (2nd ed.). Fernwood Press, Vlaeberg, Cape Town.

Rebelo, A.G., Mtshali, H. & von Staden, L. 2019. Leucadendron spissifolium (Salisb. ex Knight) I.Williams subsp. spissifolium. National Assessment: Red List of South African Plants version 2020.1. Accessed on 2022/01/23

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Distribution map

© D. Turner

© A. van Zuydam

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