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Variegated Branch

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  • George Klump
    *31 August 2011 Dear Susan, Bob is quite correct here. It is also possible and quite likely that the azalea on which the variegated branch appeared was, at
    Message 1 of 1 , Aug 31, 2011
      31 August 2011

      Dear Susan,

      Bob is quite correct here.  It is also possible and quite likely that the azalea on which the variegated branch appeared was, at one time, a variegated bush from the outset.  Or at least it had been the subject of experiments with variegated plants. 

      The problem is that variegated plants want to revert normally to their usual green form.  So one must be vigilant on that score.  Bob is right on that, too.  I have a variegated R. Ruffled Giant which is now fairly large and I have had to trim it back several times.  At one point in time, it would shoot out an occasional green branch which I promptly pruned out.  The only thing about the variegated plants is that they do not flower so readily, This means they require more than the normal amount of phosphorus to promote reasonable flowering, when that time comes. 

      Another little technique you could try, if you are willing to take a risk, is this: try pruning maybe 50% of the green branches presently on the plant.  Sometimes the plant will grow new variegated branches, if the variegated branch itself already there is hardy enough to help the part you have pruned.  Admittedly, this is taking a chance, but it is a possibility.  Yet another would be to remove the leaves from most of the green branches and see, if the variegated branch will compete for those spots, when the azalea regrows its leaves.  None of this may work, but it might be worth a try, if you really want to get a variegated azalea.  As Bob has indicated, variegated azaleas are not just everywhere readily available.  Tom Nuccio may have some or even Nick Milfeld.

      George E. Klump
      Southern California Chapter, ARS/ASA6

      Yes, you should be able to propagate your variegated branch and grow a variegated azalea.  It might tend to revert to some solid green branches, but that can be pruned.  Good luck with your plant.  Variegated azaleas are not very common.
      Bob Kelly
      Aberdeen, MS
      ----- Original Message -----
      Sent: Tuesday, August 30, 2011 8:55 PM
      Subject: [AZ] Variegated branch on azalea


       [this is from the ASK US page, so please send me a CC]
      I found a variegated branch on my azalea today and I have some questions. If I root it will it grow into a plant with all of the leaves remaining variegated or will it revert back to green leaves? Most of the leaves are splashed with white, not the same amount on each leaf-some more and some with just a little and a few of the leaves are totally white. I understand that this can make the leaves easy to burn in the sun and the bush has been growing in a part shade area for the last 15 years. My variegated hydrangea also has some solid white leaves and it seems to do okay and keeps producing variegated leaves as the branch grows. Would this also be true of the azalea? Any info would be appreciated.
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