The leaf colour of Encephalartos princeps is silvery blue, turning dull green with age. This contrast is visible in the mature crown of a stem top; only the very lowest, oldest leaves in the photo display the discoloration.
A leaf may be up to 1,3 m long, while a leaflet becomes 15 cm long and 1,5 cm wide. Some variable rachis curvature is present in the photo. On the lower leaf part of E. princeps the leaflets are spaced, while on the upper part they overlap.
All the leaflets of this species are incubous, i.e. twisted at the base at an angle to either overlap each other or be positioned at the specific angled position relative to each other; the upper margin of each leaflet lying above the lower margin of the next one.
Leaflet margins are entire or a few teeth may appear on lower leaflet margins only. At the leaf base the petiole displays a prominent collar, while the lowest leaflets are not reduced to prickles in this species (Coates Palgrave, 2002; Hugo, 2014; www.plantzafrica.com).