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A Floridata Plant Profile #198 Ligustrum x vicaryi
Common Names: golden vicary privet, golden ligustrum
Family: Oleaceae (olive Family)
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tree  Shrub  Attracts Birds Drought Tolerant Has Unusual or Interesting Foliage
golden privet
golden privet

This lovely golden-leafed privet grows 8-12 ft (2.4-3.7 m) high by 6-8 ft (1.8-2.4 m) wide and has a vase-like or oval shape. Upright stems are covered with bright golden leaves in full sun, light green (sometimes described as "sickly" green!) in shade. Clusters of white flowers appear in spring, but the shrub is valued primarily for the golden leaves.

Ligustrum x vicaryi is a cross between L. ovalifolium 'Aureum' whose common name is California privet, although it is Japanese in origin, and L. vulgare (European privet). It was developed by Vicary Gibbs of Middlesex, England in the early 1900s.

Tolerates dry soil and looks its best when not pruned.
Light: Sun to partial shade; best appearance for leaf color in full sun.
Moisture: Slightly moist to dry.
Hardiness: USDA Zones 5-8. A variant, 'Storzinger', is more heat and cold tolerant, and grows in zones 4-9.
Propagation: Most effectively by cuttings.

golden privet
Golden privet can grow to more than 10 ft (3 m) in height but can be pruned to smaller sizes and shapes.

Use as a specimen shrub or small tree in a sunny spot to best display the golden foliage. This makes a handsome foil for darker green material planted in front. May be used as a hedge or border in zones where foliage is evergreen, although it probably would look better in a mixed border. Allow plenty of space around the shrub for its perfect shape to develop. Like other privets, bears berries which, while not cherished by birds, are nonetheless a reliable food source if more favored material is not available.

Golden foliage in sun; vase-like shape; berries.

hc 12/08/97; updated 9/13/14

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