Aucuba japonica

Aucuba japonica is a medium to large size shrub, native to China, Japan, and Korea. The leaves are variegated forms. It is also known as Japanese Aucuba, Japanese Laurel, Spotted Laurel, or Gold Dust Plant. It is hardy and can grow in most difficult situations, such as dry and shady, however, it does not do well if it is water-logged. Aucuba japonica withstands coastal situations. It is grown both outdoors or in containers as houseplants. It is very easy to grow. Plant it in the sun or partial shade.

Aucuba japonica, Japanese Laurel
Aucuba japonica or Japanese Laurel

Interestingly Aucuba japonica was brought to the UK in 1783 by John Graeffer and was cultivated though all the plants were female and it was not until 80 years later when a male plant was imported to the UK from Yokohama, Japan, and for the first time in 1864 berries were produced in London. So you need both males and females in close proximity to producing berries. It grows to about 2.5m or 8ft.

Aucuba japonica
Japanese Aucuba, Japanese Laurel, Spotted Laurel, or Gold Dust Plant

Aucuba japonica is easy to maintain, requiring minimal pruning if any at all, simply shape it and remove any unwanted leaves or branches. Propagate this plant by cuttings softwood in summer and hardwood cuttings in autumn.

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I am a flower enthusiast and a gardener at heart. Ever since childhood I loved reading about plants and started gardening at an early age. First by helping my father in the garden and later managing a large garden myself in my teen years. I planted and cared for a large number of plants, flowers, and trees both outdoors and in a greenhouse. To this day I enjoy visiting gardens and parks and learning about new and old specimens and varieties of plants.

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