The old grey-green to blue-green leaves of Protea laurifolia ascend spiralling or scattered up the stems on short, stout stalks. The brown upper stems grade reddish into the petioles and midrib bases of some leaves. Other petioles are cream.
The margins of the leathery but brittle blades are pinkish or cream. The lower halves of leaf midribs are conspicuously thick and slightly prominent, their cream colouring translucent against the light. Most leaves in picture have acutely pointed tips; all taper to the base.
P. neriifolia is similar, but its leaf margins lack the horny, pale coloured rims seen here; also not the short petioles these leaves clearly have (Coates Palgrave, 2002; Rourke, 1980; iNaturalist).