New Zealand Protea season is here!
For the month of May, we're celebrating Proteas! Starting in April and finishing in October, Proteas are grown throughout New Zealand, however, prefer a drier soil and coastal gardens due to the air movement. Proteas come in a variety of types, the largest the King Protea.
If you want to keep your Proteas for longer, you can dry the Protea by hanging upside down in a dark and dry location. Leave the Protea to hang upside down for two to three weeks.
Proteas average vase life is up to two weeks and can be expanded by adding fresh water everyday.
How To Care For Your Proteas
1. Fill a clean vase half way with room, temperature water and add flower food to the water.
2. Cut the end of the stem off diagonally 2 cm
3. Remove any leaves that will be touching the water
4. Replace the water every few days as Proteas are thirsty flowers.
5. Keep the Proteas out of direct sunlight and away from fruit/fruit bowls.
6. Proteas dry well hanging upside down and can be kept as a dried flower
Jess Cooke, from Peninsula Flowers, is a local Protea grower, based in Barry's Bay, Banks Peninsula, Christchurch. Jess's family has been growing on the farm since the 1980s, and Jess has taken over in the last couple of years.
The Protea means diversity, daring, transformation and courage. It's no surprise with this meaning, that the Protea was named after the Greek God, Poseidon's son, Proteus, who had a propensity for assuming new shapes or altering his appearance to avoid detection.