Douglas Hunt
Douglas Hunt
  • Hometalker
  • New Smyrna Beach, FL

Variegated foliage: yea or nay?


Variegation in plants comes in all manner of natural and engineered forms, as these examples from a recent visit to the Atlanta Botanical Garden show. Some of these I really like, but others make me shudder.
To my eye, the variegation that is most appealing is that which most resembles the natural contrast of new growth on a plant, as in the example of a flush of growth on a Podocarpus macrophyllus "Pringles" from my back yard. I really am not a fan at all of white variegation (with the exception of variegated Solomon's seal (Polygonatum falcatum 'Variegatum') and tri-color variegation that includes pink sends me completely over the edge. Those tricolor willows (Salix integra ‘Albomaculata’)? Hideous!
We want to know what Hometalk members think about variegated foliage. Do you love it or loathe it?
The natural variegation of new foliage on a podocarpus.
The natural variegation of new foliage on a podocarpus.
I'd give this a thumbs up.
I'd give this a thumbs up.
This one, too.
This one, too.
White, not so nice.
White, not so nice.
Definitely not a fan.
Definitely not a fan.
This one? Don't get me started!
This one? Don't get me started!

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3 of 41 comments
  • Gen
    on Aug 30, 2013

    I love these green foliage too in my shady areas...love them!

  • Carole
    on Sep 2, 2013

    Love variegated foliage but is it just me or do they not seem to thrive as well as the "normal" versions? Are they in fact a little more fussy?? Even bougainvillea with variegated leaves did not seem to do so well as the unvariegated version when I grew it in tubs and I also found the same with jasmine.

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