Site Talk forum: Variegated Plants- need your help!

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Name: Trish
Jacksonville, TX (Zone 8a)
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Trish
Mar 27, 2014 3:24 PM CST

Garden.org Admin

For all of you lovers and growers of variegated plants:

After the excitement of adding these lovely foliage plants to our list of Weeks, I've only received one article to feature for the week.

The Week begins April 19, so it's time to start submitting!!

I look forward to seeing your articles Green Grin!
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Name: Suzanne/Sue
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Calif_Sue
Mar 27, 2014 4:06 PM CST

Plants Admin

This can include plants such as coleus, geraniums, hostas, huechera, etc. Thumbs up
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Name: Trish
Jacksonville, TX (Zone 8a)
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Trish
Mar 27, 2014 4:48 PM CST

Garden.org Admin

I agree Thank You!
NGA COO, Wife, Mom, and caretaker of 90 acres and all that dwell there.
Name: Tiffany
Opp, AL (Zone 8b)
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purpleinopp
Mar 28, 2014 8:43 AM CST
This is a request for articles about single variegated plants, or are you asking for a list of them? For inside or out?
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Name: Trish
Jacksonville, TX (Zone 8a)
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Trish
Mar 28, 2014 9:23 AM CST

Garden.org Admin

We need articles on any aspect of variegated plants. Inside, outside, specific plants, the science/ demonstration of variegation- any of these topics are welcome!
NGA COO, Wife, Mom, and caretaker of 90 acres and all that dwell there.
Name: Jennifer
48036 MI (Zone 6b)
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jvdubb
Mar 28, 2014 9:36 AM CST
And especially if anyone can shed light on why so many varigated varieties revert back to solid after a few years, pretty please
Name: Trish
Jacksonville, TX (Zone 8a)
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Trish
Mar 28, 2014 9:56 AM CST

Garden.org Admin

Great topic!
NGA COO, Wife, Mom, and caretaker of 90 acres and all that dwell there.
Name: Tiffany
Opp, AL (Zone 8b)
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purpleinopp
Mar 28, 2014 10:44 AM CST
Thanks for clarifying!

Jennifer, that would depend on the type of variegation. In a book I have called Variegated plants by Susan Condor, it says,

"Variegated plants originate naturally as random seedlings, or as sports - mutant variegated shoots on otherwise plain green plants. Some, such as Abutilon pictum 'Thompsonii', are virus-induced, in the same way that the streaked colours of 'Bizarre' tulips result from a harmless virus.

In red-or purple-variegated plants, chlorophyll, the green pigment responsible for photosynthesis and vital for non-parasitic plants' survival, is masked by other pigments, anthocyanins. Yellow and white variegations are caused by imperfect or absent chloroplasts, the granule-like plastids within a cell which contain chlorophyll.

In a white- or yellow-edged leaf, the green pigment functions normally in the inner layer of leaf cells, but the outer layer lacks chloroplasts, making the edges white, or contains a preliminary version of chlorophyll, protochlorophyll, creating yellow.

A yellow- or white-centered leaf, with green edges, has a defective inner layer of leaf cells. The attractive pink, red or russet spring flushes that some variegated leaves have result from anthocyanins protecting the vulnerable new growth from harsh ultraviolet light rays. Autumnal flushes result from an accumulation of sugar in the leaf tissues, caused by a drop in night temperatures which triggers the production of anthocyanins and anthoxanthins.

The intensity of leaf colour is affected by the amount of light available. There are exceptions, but generally, variegated plants with glaucous foliage, such as rue and certain hostas, tolerate more sun than all-green kinds. Those with purple, maroon and brown variegations colour most intensely in sun, often becoming dirty green in shade. Yellow-variegated leaves colour best in full sun or light shade. White- and cream-variegated leaves, such as variegated apple mint, tend to prefer shade, especially where the soil is dry. With those that are happy in sun or shade, variegation is often sharpest in sun, but if it is combined with dry soil, smaller leaves and more compact growth result."


Assuming the reversion isn't just variegation being invisible from low light levels, reversion can occur in the same way variegation occurs - randomly. Some plants are known to revert, like Tradescantias and Vincas, and the CW is that the variegated version isn't as strong or vigorous. So if the reverted sections aren't removed, they can overwhelm the variegated.

I wish I knew more about it too. Variegated plants are my fav, most of mine are.

The Wiki article on variegation is helpful also for determining what type of variegation a plant has. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Variegation




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Name: woofie
NE WA (Zone 5a)
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woofie
Mar 28, 2014 4:04 PM CST
You know, I seem to recall that someone posted either a quote or a link about the possibility that certain variegation patterns helped to deter pests by mimicking the damage. I'll see if I can find that again. It was interesting. Maybe the OP can be persuaded to put together an article? Smiling
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Name: woofie
NE WA (Zone 5a)
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woofie
Mar 28, 2014 4:44 PM CST
Took some digging, but I found it. Here's the thread.
The thread "Variegated plants might be faking it" in All Things Gardening forum
And here's a link to a news story about it.
http://news.bbc.co.uk/earth/hi/earth_news/newsid_8108000/810...

Maybe someone would put something together? Smiling
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Name: Zuzu
Northern California (Zone 9a)
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zuzu
Mar 28, 2014 10:18 PM CST

Plants Admin

Don't forget that if you want your favorite variegated plants to show up on the list of the top 25, you should add images and comments to those entries now.
Name: Mary
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fiwit
Mar 30, 2014 8:34 AM CST
Just submitted an article that *could* be used for Variegated plants week...
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Name: Trish
Jacksonville, TX (Zone 8a)
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Trish
Mar 30, 2014 10:51 AM CST

Garden.org Admin

Great!
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Name: Glen Ingram
Macleay Is, Qld, Australia (Zone 12a)
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Gleni
Mar 30, 2014 5:16 PM CST
Don't forget the variegated daylily of Kwanzo - you will have to get a photo of it though.
Name: Marilyn
Northern KY (Zone 6a)
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Marilyn
Mar 30, 2014 9:49 PM CST
Trish,

I just submitted 2 articles for your consideration for the variegated plants week.
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Name: Trish
Jacksonville, TX (Zone 8a)
I helped beta test the Garden Planting Calendar Charter ATP Member Region: Texas Roses Herbs Vegetable Grower
Composter Canning and food preservation Hosted a Not-A-Raffle-Raffle Organic Gardener Forum moderator Hummingbirder
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Trish
Mar 31, 2014 7:37 AM CST

Garden.org Admin

Thumbs up
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