Aucuba, Japanese Aucuba, Japanese Laurel 'Picturata'

Aucuba japonica

Family: Garryaceae
Genus: Aucuba (AWK-yoo-bah) (Info)
Species: japonica (juh-PON-ih-kuh) (Info)
Cultivar: Picturata



Water Requirements:

Unknown - Tell us

Sun Exposure:

Light Shade

Partial to Full Shade


Grown for foliage


Good Fall Color


Foliage Color:

Unknown - Tell us


4-6 ft. (1.2-1.8 m)


4-6 ft. (1.2-1.8 m)


USDA Zone 7a: to -17.7 C (0 F)

USDA Zone 7b: to -14.9 C (5 F)

USDA Zone 8a: to -12.2 C (10 F)

USDA Zone 8b: to -9.4 C (15 F)

USDA Zone 9a: to -6.6 C (20 F)

USDA Zone 9b: to -3.8 C (25 F)

USDA Zone 10a: to -1.1 C (30 F)

USDA Zone 10b: to 1.7 C (35 F)

Where to Grow:

Can be grown as an annual


Unknown - Tell us

Bloom Color:


Bloom Characteristics:

Unknown - Tell us

Bloom Size:

Unknown - Tell us

Bloom Time:

Mid Spring

Other details:

Unknown - Tell us

Soil pH requirements:

7.6 to 7.8 (mildly alkaline)

7.9 to 8.5 (alkaline)

Patent Information:

Unknown - Tell us

Propagation Methods:

From softwood cuttings

Seed Collecting:

Unknown - Tell us


This plant has been said to grow in the following regions:

San Jose, California

San Leandro, California

East Haddam, Connecticut

Wilmington, Delaware

Dunellen, New Jersey

Cary, North Carolina (2 reports)

Greenville, North Carolina

South Beach, Oregon

Memphis, Tennessee

Nashville, Tennessee

Houston, Texas

Hood, Virginia

Arlington, Washington

Bellingham, Washington

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Gardeners' Notes:


On Apr 10, 2017, helon from Memphis, TN wrote:

This is the male version of this plant. I have one of the female versions, which I think is "Gold Dust". The green is a medium instead of the dark shown here. The female version will produce red berries if there is a male plant nearby. This information comes from a book, "Foliage" by Nancy J. Ondra.
I love the foliage on this and started bringing it in, in the winter, to use instead of fresh flowers. All the plants rooted in plain tap water, with no fertilizer, etc. They lasted about 3 months, in no light from a window, before some of the leaves would develop black spots on them.
I have two plants that are in complete shade. They have stayed the same size for years, about 30" high. They have a single stem, with no branching.
Before she died, my Mo... read more


On Aug 4, 2013, magpie38 from Houston, TX wrote:

Planted a row of these under a front picture window in light shade. This variety is showier than most other aucubas, having large yellow areas in the leaves instead of small spots. They are great for brightening up a rather dark area, and after 5 years they are still doing very well. They get slow-drip irrigated once every three days, so I can't comment on drought-hardiness. No pest or other problems. A little hard to find in this area; I got lucky.