Daphne odora ‘Aureomarginata’

variegated winter daphne

Outstanding Qualities

This evergreen daphne is wonderfully fragrant, with its sweetness carrying on the air in March and April. It's also a very pretty shrub, with long, narrow leaves edged in creamy gold. Its flowers are small and waxy-looking, and they emerge from attractive purple buds. Plant it with a winter-interest combination, such as Camellia x williamsii 'Donation', Cyclamen coum and Crocus tommasinianus. It does well under the shade of a small deciduous tree, such as a Japanese maple, where it provides foliage interest through the winter and gets protection from hot sun in summer. Although many daphnes are tricky to grow, this one is adaptable and easy to please.

Colors & Combos

Great Color Contrasts: dark green, black, gold

Great Color Partners: purple, cream

Culture Notes

Plant this shade loving daphne in a rich, well-drained or sandy soil with light to dappled shade. Avoid locations with hot afternoon sun to keep the foliage looking its best. Once established it only needs occasional watering during dry weather. These are generally short lived plants that maintain a nice habit for 10 to 20 years and then need replacement. Growing it with limited fertilizer and good drainage can prolong its life. After a severe cold snap it can drop all of its foliage, but it will fully leaf out again in the spring. Almost no pruning is required to maintain its loose, mounding shape.

© Richie Steffen / Great Plant Picks

Quick Facts

Plant Type: shrub

Foliage Type: evergreen

Plant Height: 4 ft. 0 in. (1.22 m.)

Plant Width/Spread: 6 ft. 0 in. (1.83 m.)

Hardiness: USDA Zones 7 to 9

Flower Color: pink

Sun/Light Exposure: light, open, or dappled shade

Water Requirements: occasional watering