The “Waboom” or Protea nitida is the only Protea species to grow into trees yielding usable timber. Generally, it is gnarled and slow growing with white-grey bark and greenish white flowers that appear year-round. The waboom is well protected from fire by an exceptionally thick layer of bark. The name waboom originates from the use of the very hard wood for wheel rims and brake blocks of wagons. The wood was also popular for the manufacture of ornamental furniture. Interestingly, the name waboom was first recorded in 1720 and has thus been used for far longer than its scientific name.