Leucospermum gueinzii

pincushion protea
Yellow spring flowers with tilted pink tips on evergreen shrub. Can take more water than other pincushions. No phosphorus.
Leucospermum gueinzii
height 6–10
width 6–10
tolerates Coast, Cool Summers, Drought, Fog, Gophers, Wind
Low – Moderate
Many leucospermums are from Mediterranean climates of South Africa, so they adapt well to California, particularly along the coast. They appreciate good drainage, but they’re somewhat adaptable to heavier soil as long as they’re in a sunny spot and watering is infrequent (once established). Leucospermums will grow and look their best when watered deeply every other week to once a month during summer. With sharp drainage, they will tolerate even more water.
exposure Part Shade – Full Sun
drainage In Ground: Cactus Mix, In Pots: Cactus Mix, Tolerates Sandy Soil
fertilizing Bloodmeal, Fish Emulsion, Low Needs, No Phosphorus
origin Hybrid, South Africa
16, 17, 21–24

Sunset Zones Map

Outdoor Exposure Guide


Full Sun
Six or more hours of sun beams directly landing on the plant's leaves.

Part Shade
Three to five hours of sun beams directly landing on the plant's leaves.

Part Sun
One to two hours of sun beams directly landing on the plants leaves.

Full Shade
The plant is never fully lit by sun beams, but is in a bright spot or has dappled sunbeams playing over the leaves throughout the day.

Deep Shade
The plant never has dappled light on the leaves, and is in a place that feels dim, even on a nice sunny day.


Growing Notes

Giving this plant all purpose fertilizer will kill it immediately!
Leucospermums have showy pincushion flowers at the branch tips in late spring through early summer.
Naturally pincushion proteas have a thick bushy form, but they can be kept smaller and made even bushier by pruning. Don’t prune more than two years of growth (where the old woody leafless stems start), or you risk the plant not budding back. They can even be groomed into modest-sized formal hedges.
Generally fertilizer is not necessary. Leucospermums do prefer mildly acidic soil, and if your PH is on the high side, (one cause of yellowing leaves) you can add cottonseed meal, iron, or other mild (low in phosphorus and potassium) acidifying fertilizer to adjust it. They appreciate nitrogen in the form of fish emulsion or blood meal, but never give them any significant phosphorus and avoid potassium.
Once flowers are mature they naturally shed cleanly from the plant.

Special Interest

Long-lasting cut flowers on long straight stems, perfect for display.

Flowers transition through various shades of colors as they mature and are loved by hummingbirds.

Long lasting cut flowers on tall stems are perfect for floral displays.