Spotted Laurel (Aucuba japonica) is a large, evergreen shrub also known as Japanese Laurel and Gold Leaf Plant. This plant is grown for its striking variegated foliage with yellow or white spots or streaks -- there is also a plain green kind.
This shade-loving plant is great for a spot in the back of the border to add some bright foliage interest or as a hedge. It tolerates dry soils and air pollution well. It is easy to propagate new plants from cuttings.
It has long-lasting red fruits that appear in the fall that are also attractive. To produce the fruit, you must have male and female plants nearby to each other.
Aucuba typically grows to 8 feet wide and high. It can be pruned in spring to keep its size in check. There are also dwarf varieties available.
It is hardy to Zones 7 to 9 and is native to Asia. Aucuba can be grown in containers outdoors and also does well as a house plant. Plant it in a protected spot out of prevailing winds and direct sun in well-draining soil. This is a low-maintenance, easy-care plant.
Aucuba: You Can Grow That!
The video was produced by Washington Gardener Magazine.
Audio and Text by Kathy Jentz
Video and Editing by Melinda Thompson
Additional Video Footage by Kathy Jentz
Partially filmed at the US National Arboretum’s Asian Collection.
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