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Purple Aucuba Flowers


Purple Aucuba Flowers

Aucuba


A temperate East Asian genus, this has 3 or 4 species of lushly foliaged evergreen shrubs of the dogwood (Cornaceae) family. Their large, leathery, dark green leaves have coarsely toothed edges and the glossy foliage of the garden cultivars is often flecked and splashed with gold variegations. Sprays of inconspicuous purple or green flowers appear in spring and are followed by slow-ripening red or orange fruits that contain a single nut-like seed. There are separate male and female plants and both are required for fruit to develop. Aucuba is a corruption of the Japanese name.


Top Tip

Because they prefer
at least part-shade,
aucubas are useful
plants for under the
canopy of trees.
They also grow well
in containers on
shady balconies.

Cultivation


Very hardy for such large-leafed evergreens, Aucuba adds a semi-tropical touch to the temperate garden. Plant in deep and cool, fertile, humus-enriched soil that remains moist. Plants will fruit more heavily with sun, but the foliage is better in light shade. Propagate from half-hardened summer cuttings. The seed germinates freely, but most seedlings have plain green leaves.
      Cuttings: from late summer
      Seeds: in autumn
      Layering: in spring and autumn

Of these evergreen shrubs, only Aucuba japonica is commonly grown. Semi ripe cuttings can be easily rooted in a sheltered nursery bed, such as in a cold frame If preferred, reduce the foliage for ease of handling; bottom heat at 70°F (21°C) speeds rooting, in 6 – 8 weeks. Leave the cuttings until spring before potting. New plants mature in3 - 4 years. Gather seeds from ripe berries sow fresh in autumn Germination may take 18 months. Simple layering works well; layers can be planted out in 12 months.


Name

Flower color

Blooming Season

Flower Fragrance

Plant Height

Plant Width

Hardiness Zone

Frost Tolerance

Aucuba japonica

Purple

Late spring

No

6ft
1.8m

6ft
1.8m

7-9

Yes

Aucuba Japonica ‘Crotonifolia’

Purple

Late spring

No

6ft
1.8m

6ft
1.8m

7-9

Yes

Aucuba japonica ‘Gold King’

Purple

Late spring

No

6ft
1.8m

6ft
1.8m

7-9

Yes

Aucuba japonica ‘Rozannie’

Purple

Late spring

No

3-4ft
0.9-1.2m

4ft
1.2m

7-9

Yes

Aucuba japonica ‘Variegata’

Purple

Late spring

No

6ft
1.8m

6ft
1.8m

7-9

Yes