Grey-leaf Sugarbsh

Scientific Name
Protea laurifolia Thunb.
Higher Classification
Protea comigera Stapf, Protea marginata Thunb.
Common Names
Grey-leaf Sugarbsh (e), Laurel Sugarbush (e), Louriersuikerbos (a), Lourier-suikerbos (a), Suikerbos (a), Suikerkan (a)
National Status
Status and Criteria
Least Concern
Assessment Date
A.G. Rebelo, H. Mtshali & L. von Staden
Protea laurifolia is endemic to the mountains of the Northern and Western Cape provinces, South Africa. It is widespread, and common within its habitat, and not yet in danger of extinction. It is therefore listed as Least Concern.
South African endemic
Provincial distribution
Northern Cape, Western Cape
It is found from the Bokkeveld Escarpment to Hottentots-Holland and Riviersonderend Mountains, extending eastwards to the Witteberg and Anysberg, in the Northern and Western Cape Provinces of South Africa.
Habitat and Ecology
Major system
Major habitats
Kouebokkeveld Shale Fynbos, Hawequas Sandstone Fynbos, Bokkeveld Sandstone Fynbos, Breede Quartzite Fynbos, Matjiesfontein Quartzite Fynbos, Swartruggens Quartzite Fynbos, Montagu Shale Fynbos, Greyton Shale Fynbos, Elgin Shale Fynbos, Cape Winelands Shale Fynbos, Kouebokkeveld Alluvium Fynbos, Matjiesfontein Shale Fynbos, South Sonderend Sandstone Fynbos, Robertson Granite Fynbos, Boland Granite Fynbos, Breede Sand Fynbos, Leipoldtville Sand Fynbos, Central Coastal Shale Band Vegetation, Western Coastal Shale Band Vegetation, Northern Inland Shale Band Vegetation, Swartland Alluvium Fynbos, Breede Alluvium Fynbos, Breede Shale Fynbos, Piketberg Sandstone Fynbos, Swartland Shale Renosterveld, Breede Shale Renosterveld, Montagu Shale Renosterveld, Matjiesfontein Shale Renosterveld, Ceres Shale Renosterveld, Citrusdal Shale Renosterveld, Nieuwoudtville Shale Renosterveld, Vanrhynsdorp Shale Renosterveld, Swartland Granite Renosterveld, Kogelberg Sandstone Fynbos, North Hex Sandstone Fynbos, North Sonderend Sandstone Fynbos, Winterhoek Sandstone Fynbos, Cederberg Sandstone Fynbos, Nardouw Sandstone Fynbos, Olifants Sandstone Fynbos, South Swartberg Sandstone Fynbos, North Swartberg Sandstone Fynbos, Graafwater Sandstone Fynbos, South Langeberg Sandstone Fynbos, North Langeberg Sandstone Fynbos, Agter-Sederberg Shrubland, South Hex Sandstone Fynbos
It occurs on sandstone slopes, often found in dry sandy or granite soils, 100-1200 m. Mature individuals are killed by fires, and only seeds survive. Wind-dispersed seeds are stored in fire-resistant inflorescences, and released after fires. It is pollinated by birds.
At least 27% of this species habitat has been lost to agricultural expansion and timber plantations in the past. The plantations are however no longer expanding, and are being phased out, and therefore this threat has largely ceased. However, escaping pine seedlings are spreading into this species habitat in some parts of the range, and may pose a future threat if not managed.

This is a very social species, typically forming an open woodland over vast areas. Subpopulations are large, and the population is not currently declining.

Population trend
Assessment History
Taxon assessed
Status and Criteria
Citation/Red List version
Protea laurifolia Thunb.Least Concern Raimondo et al. (2009)

Goldblatt, P. and Manning, J.C. 2000. Cape Plants: A conspectus of the Cape Flora of South Africa. Strelitzia 9. National Botanical Institute, Cape Town.

Manning, J.C. and Goldblatt, P. 2012. Plants of the Greater Cape Floristic Region 1: The Core Cape Flora. Strelitzia 29. South African National Biodiversity Institute, Pretoria.

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.

Vlok, J. and Schutte-Vlok, A.L. 2010. Plants of the Klein Karoo. Umdaus Press, Hatfield.

Rebelo, A.G., Mtshali, H. & von Staden, L. 2019. Protea laurifolia Thunb. National Assessment: Red List of South African Plants version . Accessed on 2024/04/17

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Distribution map

© J.H. Vlok/A.L. Schutte-Vlok

© Outramps

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