King protea Protea cynaroides, from here.

Belongs within: Proteales.
Contains: Persoonioideae, Grevilleoideae, Conosperminae, Petrophile.

The Proteaceae are a family of flowering plants found primarily in southern Africa, Australia and South America, as well as in Asia and various parts of the Pacific. Many species have red or yellow flowers, generally bird-pollinated. The Proteaceae are divided between a number of subfamilies, of which the largest are the primarily African Proteoideae and the mostly Australian Grevilleoideae. For the most part, Proteoideae are characterised by indehiscent fruits and single flowers. Bellendena montana, a Tasmanian species that has been placed in its own subfamily, bears flowers in a mostly ebracteate raceme and has dry, indehiscent fruits with two wings. The Symphionematoideae, another small group found in south-eastern Australia, have bracteate inflorescences and dry, indehiscent fruits (Weston & Barker 2006).

Within the Proteoideae, the Conospermeae as listed below are supported as a clade by molecular analysis as well as by coherence of fertile anther loculi to the fertile loculi of adjacent anthers. The Proteeae are characterised by floral zygomorphy with the perianth being split into two lobes, the anterior tepal free or basally connate to the others and the three posterior tepals completely connate or almost so. The Leucadendreae are a diverse clade lacking clear morphological synapomorphies but united by molecular data. The Petrophileae are also primarily united by molecular data but may also be characterised by the production of the sugar pinitol (Weston & Barker 2006).

Characters (from Foreman 1995): Trees or shrubs. Stipules absent. Leaves spiral, rarely verticillate or opposite, simple or variously divided, often dimorphous; margin entire or toothed, sometimes spiny. Inflorescences axillary or terminal, ramiflorous or cauliflorous, with flowers in pairs, arranged in raceme- or cone-like inflorescences or in dense heads; peduncles present or absent. Bracts present, mostly small, often early caducous, sometimes large and woody. Flowers regular to very irregular, mostly bisexual, rarely unisexual. Tepals valvate, with expanded limb, often recurved, at first adhering to each other mostly becoming entirely free. Receptacle flat or oblique. Stamens 4, epipetalous; filaments usually relatively short; anthers erect, basifixed, mostly tetrasporangiate, dehiscing by longitudinal slits; connective prolonged or not. Disc mostly present, flat or oblique, annular or more or less horseshoe-shaped or with 4 free or variously fused hypogynous glands. Ovary superior, 1-locular, sessile or stipitate, often oblique. Style more or less expanded in upper part into pollen-presenter. Stigma mostly small, terminal or lateral. Ovules 1 or more, pendulous or laterally attached. Fruit dehiscent or indehiscent: follicle, drupe or small nut. Seeds winged or not; endosperm mostly absent; cotyledons thin or thick and fleshy.

    |  `--Bellendena [Bellendenoideae]WB06
    |       `--B. montanaWB06
          |    |--Agastachys odorataWB06
          |    `--Symphyonema paludosumH87
               |  i. s.: DilobeiaWB06
               |         Beaupreopsis paniculataWB06
               |--Eidothea [Eidotheoideae]WB06
               |--+--Cenarrhenes nitidaWB06
               |  `--ConospermeaeWB06
               |       |--ConosperminaeWB06
               |       `--Stirlingia [Stirlingiinae]WB06
               |            |--S. anethifoliaGK00
               |            |--S. latifoliaRL05
               |            |--S. seselifoliaGK00
               |            |--S. simplexOS04
               |            `--S. tenuifoliaGK00
               `--+--Franklandia fucifoliaWB06, GK00
                     |    |--PetrophileWB06
                     |    `--Aulax pallasiaWB06
                        |    |--FaureaWB06
                        |    `--ProteaWB06
                        |         |--P. cynaroidesDE06
                        |         `--P. madiensisPB27
                             |--Isopogon [Isopogoninae]WB06
                             |    |--I. anemonifoliusF09
                             |    |--I. attenuatusGK00
                             |    |--I. dawsoniB96
                             |    |--I. dubiusOS04
                             |    |--I. gardneriG04
                             |    |--I. petiolarisB96
                             |    |--I. polycephalusGK00
                             |    |--I. scabriusculusG04
                             |    |    |--I. s. ssp. scabriusculusG04
                             |    |    `--I. s. ssp. stenophyllusG04
                             |    `--I. teretifoliusOS04
                             `--+--Adenanthos [Adenanthinae]WB06
                                |    |--A. acanthophyllusK90
                                |    |--A. argyreusG04
                                |    |--A. cuneataW89
                                |    |--A. cygnorumOS04
                                |    `--A. obovatusGK00
                                           |  `--+--DiastellaWB06
                                           |     `--Orothamnus zeyheriWB06
Proteaceae incertae sedis:
  Myricophyllum Saporta 1862CBH93
  Proteaephyllum reniforme Fontaine 1889CBH93
  Propylipollis dehaani [=Proteacidites dehaani]CBH93
    |--P. magnus Samoilovitch 1961YB02
    |--P. palisadusV12
    |--P. retusus Anderson 1960YB02
    |--P. scaboratusV12
    |--P. thalmannii Anderson 1960YB02
    `--P. tuberculatusOW01
  Euplassa bleasdalii [=Adenostephanus bleasdalii, Grevillea bleasdalii; incl. Bleasdalea cupanioides]D16

*Type species of generic name indicated


[B96] Baker, R. T. 1896. On the botany of Rylstone and the Goulburn River districts. Part I. Proceedings of the Linnean Society of New South Wales 21 (3): 427–466.

[CBH93] Collinson, M. E., M. C. Boulter & P. L. Holmes. 1993. Magnoliophyta (‘Angiospermae’). In: Benton, M. J. (ed.) The Fossil Record 2 pp. 809–841. Chapman & Hall: London.

[D16] Diels, L. 1916. Neue Proteaceen Papuasiens. Botanische Jahrbücher für Systematik, Pflanzengeschichte und Pflanzengeographie 54: 198–206.

[DE06] Duncan, G. D., & T. J. Edwards. 2006. Three new species of Lachenalia (Hyacinthaceae: Massonieae) from Western and Northern Cape, South Africa. Bothalia 36 (2): 147–155.

[F09] Fletcher, J. J. 1909. Illustrations of polycotyledony in the genus Persoonia, with some reference to Nuytsia. [N.OO. Proteaceae; Loranthaceae]. Proceedings of the Linnean Society of New South Wales 33: 867–882, pls 34–35.

[G04] Gibson, N. 2004. Flora and vegetation of the Eastern Goldfields Ranges: part 7. Middle and South Ironcap, Digger Rock and Hatter Hill. Journal of the Royal Society of Western Australia 87 (2): 49–62.

[GK00] Gibson, N., & G. J. Keighery. 2000. Flora and vegetation of the Byenup-Muir reserve system, south-west Western Australia. CALMScience 3 (3): 323–402.

[H87] Haviland, E. 1887. Flowering seasons of Australian plants. No. I—List of plants indigenous in the neighbourhood of Sydney, flowering during July. Proceedings of the Linnean Society of New South Wales, series 2, 1 (4): 1049–1051.

[K90] Keighery, G. J. 1990. Vegetation and flora of Shark Bay, Western Australia. In: Berry, P. F., S. D. Bradshaw & B. R. Wilson (eds) Research in Shark Bay: Report of the France-Australe Bicentenary Expedition Committee pp. 61–87. Western Australian Museum.

[OS04] Obbens, F. J., & L. W. Sage. 2004. Vegetation and flora of a diverse upland remnant of the Western Australian wheatbelt (Nature Reserve A21064). Journal of the Royal Society of Western Australia 87 (1): 19–28.

[OW01] Orchard, A. E., & A. J. G. Wilson (eds) 2001. Flora of Australia vol. 11A. Mimosaceae, Acacia part 1. Australian Biological Resources Study: Canberra.

[PB27] Pilsbry, H. A., & J. Bequaert. 1927. The aquatic mollusks of the Belgian Congo, with a geographical and ecological account of Congo malacology. Bulletin of the American Museum of Natural History 53 (2): 69–602, pls 10–77.

[P92] Poinar, G. O., Jr. 1992. Life in Amber. Stanford University Press: Stanford.

[RL05] Rafferty, C., & B. B. Lamont. 2005. Selective feeding by macropods on vegetation regenerating following fire. Journal of the Royal Society of Western Australia 88 (4): 155–165.

[V12] Vajda, V. 2012. Fungi, a driving force in normalization of the terrestrial carbon cycle following the end-Cretaceous extinction. In: Talent, J. A. (ed.) Earth and Life: Global biodiversity, extinction intervals and biogeographic perturbations through time pp. 811–817. Springer.

[WB06] Weston, P. H., & N. P. Barker. 2006. A new suprageneric classification of the Proteaceae, with an annotated checklist of genera. Telopea 11 (3): 314–344.

[W89] Woolls, W. 1889. Specimens of plants collected at King George’s Sound by the Rev. R. Collie, F.L.S. Proceedings of the Linnean Society of New South Wales, series 2, 4 (2): 317–324.

[YB02] Yi, S., & D. J. Batten. 2002. Palynology of Upper Cretaceous (uppermost Campanian-Maastrichtian) deposits in the South Yellow Sea Basin, offshore Korea. Cretaceous Research 23: 687–706.

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