Perfect for shady gardens, Aucuba japonica (Spotted Laurel) is a dense, upright, rounded, evergreen shrub, prized for its lush foliage of leathery, glossy, rich green leaves mottled with golden yellow. In early to mid spring, small purple flowers, adorned with creamy white anthers, appear from the leaf axils (female plants), or in terminal panicles (male plants). When pollinated, the female blooms give way to ornamental, glossy, bright red berries that ripen in fall and often persist until spring. To enjoy a stunning fall and winter fruit display, make sure to plant a male plant near a female plant!
- Grows up to 6-10 ft. tall (180-300 cm) and 5-9 ft. wide (150-270 cm). Female plants tend to spread more than male plants.
- A part shade to full shade lover, this plant is easily grown in organically rich, moist, well-drained soils. Tolerant of a wide range of soils but will grow and look better if poor or heavy soils are improved. Tolerant of pollution, drought. Protect from strong winds.
- Perfect as specimen plant, for shrub borders, foundation plantings, hedges or containers.
- Low maintenance, this plant is generally disease and pest free.
- Propagate by cuttings or from seed.
- Prune to control height or form by cutting back to a leaf joint.
- Fruits may cause a mild stomach upset if ingested
- Native from the Himalayas to Japan.