|This article does not cite any references or sources. (December 2009)|
|natural range of the genus|
Species in the genus Leucadendron are evergreen shrubs or small trees. Most species are shrubs that grow up to 1 m tall, some to 2 or 3 m. A few grow into moderate-sized trees up to 16 m tall. The leaves are spirally arranged, simple, entire, and usually green, often covered with a waxy bloom, and in the case of the Silvertree, with a distinct silvery tone produced by dense, straight, silky hairs. This inspired the generic name Leucadendron, which literally means "white tree".
The seed heads, or infructescences, of Leucadendron are woody cone-like structures. This gave rise to their generic common name cone-bush. The cones contain numerous seeds. The seed morphology is varied and reflects subgeneric groupings within the genus. A few such as the Silvertree, Leucadendron argenteum have a silky-haired parachute, enabling the large round nut to be dispersed by wind. A few are rodent dispersed, cached by rats, and a few have elaiosomes and are dispersed by ants. About half the species store the seeds in fire-proof cones and release them only after a fire has killed the plant or at least the branch bearing the cone. Many such species hardly recruit naturally except after fires.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Leucadendron.|
|This Proteaceae-related article is a stub. You can help Wikipedia by expanding it.|